First things first – do you agree? When it comes to time management, Stephen Covey recommends first anchoring the “big rocks” into your schedule, then filling in the remaining space with the less important pebbles, and then sand. He shares that you will then have room left for plenty of water, even when your container is full of rocks, pebbles and sand. The key, according to Covey, is to decide what your big rocks are and put those first things first.

For me, the big rocks always were, and will be, family.  I learned my lesson when I missed a family event, and I vowed to never let that happen again. Think about what comes first in your own life; what matters most?  What message are you sending – at work, at home, in relationships, and wherever it matters most? In the big picture we know as life, placement of our rocks does matter. My own rocks are in the form of work, family, relationships, and health. They all matter, but work will wait (yes, even with deadlines), and family will wait (but perhaps unhappily). Are you willing to re-organize your rocks, your priorities, to put first things first, and to do what it takes to balance your work and your life?  My missed event in life opened my eyes to the possibility of balance. Balance does require adjustment; consider the adjustments needed when you are riding a bike. We all experience a new mishaps or falls. We look back on those experiences and wonder, “What if…I had done it differently?”  Do you look back on how you spend your time, on your priorities with a smile or a frown? In the words of Lucille Ball, “I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done.”

Now is the time to put first things first!