What fits in 168 hours

photo-100I’ve had a good week. I usually do during my “birthday weeks” because I’m good about planning in fun stuff in both my work and personal life. I’m also good about not planning stuff I don’t want to do. There’s a lesson there.

Maybe I should do this more often.

It turns out you can fit a lot of cool things into 168 hours. Starting the Friday after Thanksgiving and going to the end of yesterday I…

… flew to Miami to give a speech
… got to sit by the pool in Miami and work on my novel
… drank mojitos while out on the town in Miami Beach
… went to the Y with the family twice, and went swimming there once
… ran solo 3 times
… had a column published in USA Today (on eating what you hunt — thanks to everyone who helped with that!)
… reported and wrote 3 Fast Company pieces
… got a massage — my birthday treat
… went shopping at Costco all by myself (also a birthday treat, though perhaps a less obviously fun one than the massage. To each her own — I found a pair of jeans that fit for only $25!)
… went to the Philadelphia Museum of Art and saw their special exhibit on artists in the 1920s in Paris. There were some cool mash-ups — poets teaming up with painters to make limited edition illustrated bits of verse. I think that would be fun to pull off sometime.
… found about 2 dozen new beta readers for the novel. Thank you to everyone who responded! I already knew that this blog had wonderful readers, and your emails just added more evidence to the pile.
… took my kids out to dinner, solo, and had a reasonable time. Milkshakes help.
… decorated the Christmas tree and only lost a few ornaments to little hands
… finally got around to scheduling some playdates for the kids

It was a full week, but didn’t feel rushed or harried. In the late Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he talks about “big rocks” and “small rocks.” If you’re trying to fill a jar with rocks and you put the little rocks in first, the big rocks won’t fit. But if you put the big rocks in first, the small rocks will fill in around them. The metaphor for life — because there’s always a metaphor for life — is that we should fill our lives with the important stuff first. Then we can trust that the emails, the errands, the little stuff will fill in around the weightier or joyous matters.

Which is true. But it’s also cool, sometimes, to only put the big rocks in and skip as many small rocks as possible. This was a week of mostly big rocks. Eventually I’ll have to catch up on the small rocks, I guess.

Or not.

Have you ever planned a “big rocks” kind of week?



4 Responses to What fits in 168 hours


  1. Katherine says:

    Ha! This week is purely, exclusively a “big rocks” week. Nothing else has mattered a lick.

    Your birthday week sounds awesome! Love the balance of getting things done (solo trip to Costco) and taking care of yourself (mojitos!).

  2. oldmdgirl says:

    I have too many big rocks. The only thing that helps is making them into sand.

  3. Big rock weeks are awesome! But I bet you’ve got a pile of laundry waiting for you this weekend. Can’t put off the small rocks forever, sadly. Although a really nice clean kitchen makes me so happy (and is so nice to cook in!), maybe I should reconsider what my big & small rocks are!

  4. Brittany says:

    I also have a lot of big and small rocks both… If only I were building a stone house! But hey, at least the laundry is done!