Time Management: The Pickle Jar Theory

by Jeremy Wright

111 Reader Comments

Back to the Article
  1. That was very interesting..and very wise. Will follow it from now on.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  2. You can fill up your day any way you wish, but in the long run, you’ll want to have spent your time on the important things in life (rocks), without ignoring the necessities that keep it ticking (small rocks, sand and water), rather than being caught up with the little things (small rocks, sand and water) and regretting that you didn’t do the things that you really wanted to (rocks).

    Rock ‘n’ Roll.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  3. Everyone seems full of admiration for this. Can’t see why. Time management is neccesary but there is no simple or one-size-fits-all solution. You have to figure out how you work and what, therefore, works for you when you plan your time. It ain’t that the Pickle jobbie won’t work, it may just not be right for you.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  4. Jeremy, I don’t break for lunch. Why? Well, I eat lunch each day at work but I do it whilst pounding the sand—maybe even the water—because I get absorbed and obsessed with the stuff early in the day. THANK YOU for the wake up call. I feel balanced in a Zen sort of way knowing Monday is not going to be like last Monday.

    I have honestly gone through much the same experience as you did in your “pre-pickle jar” days, but no more!

    Everyone I care about is going to get a link to this article. I hope they will improve themselves as I plan to improve myself. THANK YOU!

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  5. I stumbled across this great book called Getting Things Done by David Allen some months ago. Being a time management junkie I bought it. To my big surprise this book really contained useful stuff (compared to a lot of other grand theories that sound good but are not very practical)… Check out the website http://www.gettingthingsdone.com for more info.

    A warning though. It takes a little effort to implement this, but the rewards have been great!

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  6. Like I tell my kidz: if you have a frog to eat, eat it fast! If you have 2 frogs to swallow, eat the big one first.

    Keith

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  7. I am a first year student in college who has to rpoduce a time managent booklet by the 30th of november.
    I have been told to find as many theorists as possible to back up my underpinning knowledge. Does anyone have any ideas?
    Thanks
    desperate!

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  8. I will definitely use this for some of my essay, as factual / opinionated ideas that reflect upon my thesis and essay topic. THANKS FOR THE HELP!

    SCOTT B. WASCHER
    UNITED STATES NAVY

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  9. This theory sounds like just plain common sense to me. Like the “use your brain” theory. I’ve been practicing this for long years now, and I believe most time management techniques go down the same lane. The pickle jar analogy is a tasty one though. Although I would prefer a cookie jar myself. And instead of rocks, pebbles, sand, and water, I would fill it up with doughnuts, MMs, cocoa powder and milk (reminder to self: buy latest celebrity diet book).

    Seriously: why do we need such theorists to tell us what’s obvious?

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  10. Why? Because I talk to people every day who aren’t. If you are doing it then great. Personally I know I’ve tried dozens of systems in the past (as the article said), and finally settled on a few that work for me. I was simply sharing in case others were in the situation I was, and apparently they were.

    Anyways, it’s beena while since this was published, but it was definitely a worthwhile experience and article :)

    J

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  11. This was great! I’m writing a paper on time management and was getting a little bored with the norm. This was well written and displayed. It made me smile.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  12. I wanted to find some information on time management, but didn’t want the same old stuffy, boring (yawn), dry material. This was perfect! I, too, had heard the lesson of rocks, pebbles, and sand. I like the pickles, though. I’m guilty of it all—trying to cram as much into one day as I can, rarely crossing off everything on the list, and then feeling like I wasn’t productive. I love this perspective and will use it at home and at work. Thanks for such a well-written piece.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  13. well, when I think of all the rocks in my head, it’s good to know that there’s still some room for pebbles/sand/water.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  14. What a load of bollocks

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  15. Makes a lot of sense. At this point my jar gets filled with water first, no doubt. (wink)

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  16. Even as a highschool student, this article was extremely helpful for me. Some good ideas were stated, and it sounds like this system actually works. Time for pickles!

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  17. A little caffiene always helps me remember which rocks are mine…

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  18. Like everyone who takes a free breath or air, every second life happens. Sometimes it invades our day and sometimes it just hangs over us. I work in our own company, as well as from my home office most days, but I still have a hard time keeping my office time sacred. People think you work in an at home office so they run all over your day. I am better at knowing the difference between urgent and important, but there are very few emergency times in anyones day unless your are a firefighter or police. So thanks for a reminder to sort out the needs to been seen too, and the they would nice to get to issues. As long as the sun rises I have hope of improving my time management skills, so I shall keep on course and eventually write articles like this (smiley face goes here.)

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  19. I am sorry to say; I ve never tried a time management system in my life before….what I tried most; was not to work(hence had all the time I needed for anything!!)…all my life I ve managed not to but, pickles taste good and I’ll try this… green or not.

    Rock pickles…..hmmmmm!

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  20. I had a jar of pickles in the refrigerator and they accientally froze. It took hot water and a screwdriver to melt the ice and open the jar.
    Well it ruined the pickles but i now have an empty jar.
    Dont freeze pickles, give them to me instead, and i like this time managemant theory.
    Anyone have any chocolate covered strawberies?

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.
  21. that stuff was gr8. i mean it was put very succintly. i have been using many other things about time management but this one was too good.

    Copy & paste the code below to embed this comment.