Dear Sensitive Soul,

As you may remember, I'm off on my sabbatical now, through the beginning of April 2008. I wrote this article for you before I began my time off, to get you thinking about what you want to do with all that great New Year's Resolution energy that comes up with the turn of the calendar. Enjoy it.

Even though I'll be away, keep an eye out for the e-zine -- it will continue while I'm away.

And I'll be looking forward to reconnecting with you when I'm back at my desk in 2008.


Feature Article
Three Big Rocks

When I work with my clients in Phase III of my Embrace Your Essential Self program, I talk to them about selecting their "Three Big Rocks." This concept has been spread by Stephen Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. I've heard this story told a number of different ways. Here's an abridged form of a version I found on the web:

A time management expert places a large wide-mouthed jar on the table, and then puts several large rocks carefully into the jar. When the jar is packed to the top, he asks, "Is this jar full?"

Everyone watching says, "Yes." Then he says, "Really?" He begins to add pebbles into the jar and the group watches as they work themselves down into the spaces between the big rocks.

Then he asks again, "Is this jar full?" By this time, the group is skeptical. "Maybe not," they say. "Good!" he answers. He then adds sand to the jar and it fills in the spaces left between the rocks and the pebbles.

Once more, he asks, "Is this jar full?"

"No!" they shout. Once again, he says, "Good!"

Then he takes a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar is full to the brim. He then looks at the group and asks, "What do you think is the point of this Illustration?"

One eager beaver raises her hand and says, "The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard you can always fit more things in."

"No," the speaker replies, "that’s not my point. The Truth is: If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you will never get them in at all."

The way I've learned to look at this is that we have to pick out what our "Big Rocks" are first, organize our priorities around those, and only then look at what else we want to add into the remaining interstitial spaces of our lives.

Similarly, when my intuitive development teacher, Sonia Choquette, leads her "Creating Your Heart's Desire" workshop, she talks about the importance of focusing our manifestation efforts on no more than three things in any given year. If we try to do more than that, she says, our efforts have little chance of manifesting into reality because they are too watered down.

Therefore, when I work with my clients, I have them choose their "Three Big Rocks" to focus on developing. Then we go on to crafting Intention Statements that we use to guide their visioning and planning for the year to come.

As we move into the beginning of 2008, I invite you to carefully consider your Three Big Rocks. When I work with my clients through my coaching program, I ask them to first "cast a wide net" in their explorations. Often, our greatest dreams and intuitive next steps get buried by our mind's "good ideas" and our internalized "shoulds" about what's most important. But deep down, our inner guidance can lead us in the proper direction if we allow it to do so.

Powerful questions to ask:

  • What do I really, really want?
  • Where am I being called to focus my energy right now?
  • If I didn’t have to worry about time, money, or anyone else, what would I do?
  • What really matters to me in terms of how I spend my time?

Enjoy your holidays!


Copyright 2007, Jennifer K. Avery

For more articles like this one, see Jenna's Articles or her E-zine Archives online.

This article may be published on your website or in your e-zine as long as the copyright notice and this complete note are included:

Jenna Avery, the Life Coach for Sensitive Souls, offers an original coaching program designed to guide highly sensitive souls to a deep sense of inner rightness, so they are inspired to step forward and shine. You're invited to visit her website at to take her free online assessment, "Is Your Sensitivity Working For You?"

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The Art of
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December 2007

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