Will Call

April 30th, 2009

While sitting next to my roommate, attempting to think of a personal philosophy, I began to take an introspective look at my life.

Sure that’s probably not the most masculine thing I could say, but hey, it beats taking eight whipped cream pies to the face.

In the near future, we will all be forced to make major decisions; ones that will affect the rest of our lives and lead us to an uncertain future known as the “real world.”

So before I enter I wanted to take the time to establish my personal philosophy, something I recommend everyone do.

I look at my life in comparison to an empty jar of mayonnaise and two cans of beer.

Imagine the empty jar. Now fill that jar with golf balls and ask yourself if the jar is full. Some might say yes, but then take a bag of pebbles and fill the spaces that the golf balls didn’t.

Ask yourself again if the jar is now full. And once again some might say yes. But now empty a bag of sand into the jar. The tiny grains take up the remaining space that the pebbles missed.

Although the jar may seem full at this point, take two cans of beer, or some other drink, and dump them into the jar.

Think of the jar as your life, and the golf balls, pebbles, sand and beer as your priorities.

Golf balls stand for the most important things in your life: Family, friends and kids, if you have them. Pebbles represent secondary priorities such as school, work and so forth. The sand refers to the lowest of your priorities.

If you try to fill the jar any other way, it would be nearly impossible. Putting the pebbles in first would not allow you to fit the golf balls in, and the same is true of the sand.

The only way to fit all the priorities in the jar would be golf balls (family) first, then pebbles (school) and finally sand (lowest priorities). As far as the two cans of beer, you always have time for a couple drinks with your friends.

It’s imperative to keep priorities straight, especially in times when people are wrapped up in post graduation and what their futures are going to look like once they leave college.

I’m not an expert, but I often find myself consumed by things that have no bearing on my life in the long run. In the end is it going to matter if you missed one assignment or passed up on the chance to hang out with friends?

Earlier this year I found myself so wrapped up in achieving a perfect GPA, I missed opportunities with family and friends that are far more important than a couple of numbers and a decimal point.

Don’t make that mistake.

Savor this experience because college is about making bad decisions and getting away with them; because one day we won’t be able to.

For you graduating seniors, remember the jar of mayonnaise and two cans of beer because you may find yourself lost in the confusion of the real world. Stay true to your personal philosophy and life will be enjoyable and worthwhile.

A philosophy teacher once told me, “Don’t wait for the storm to pass, but learn to dance in the rain.”

Good luck.