Here are three inspirational stories filled with wisdom. Coincidentally, all involve Professors
Story # 1: Weight of half glass of water
Professor came to the class, and, without saying anything filled a glass half full with water.
Students, all expectant to hear the eternal question about 'Glass half filled or half empty?' braced themselves.
'How much does this glass weigh?' asked the Prof.
How much does a glass half filled with water weigh? 'Two ounces' came one answer, 'five' piped another student.
'The weight of this glass depends on how much time you are going to hold the glass' said the wise Professor, 'You might not feel any weight if you hold this for a few minutes. But if you hold it for an hour, it will feel slightly heavy, and if you hold it for a day, it will be very heavy. Hold it for five days, and your hands will start aching and you will find it difficult to hold the glass.'
'Situations that create hurt and stress are like this half filled glass. If you keep it for a few moments, they will not hurt, but if you carry them with you throughout, they will start hurting you severely, making you ineffective'.
'So', said the professor throwing out the water through the window, 'throw out those stress inducing feelings and emotions before they can hurt you'.
Story # 2: Glass filled with Stones
Professor comes to the class, picks up a glass and fills it with some stones.
'Is this glass full?', he asks the class
'Yes', responds the class unanimously
Then he pours in a few small pebbles. The pebbles occupy the space between the stones.
'Do you think the glass is full now?', he queried
'Yes', answers the class a bit dubiously
The Professor goes on to fill the glass with sand. The small grains of sand fills the gap between the pebbles.
'Is the glass full now?', asks the Prof.
'Yes', the class is absolutely sure.
The Prof. goes on to pour a cup of coffee in the glass.
'You see', says the Professor, 'this glass is an analogy for your life. The stones represent the things that are very important to you, like Values, Goals, Family, Friends, Work Life Balance, Hobbies etc. The pebbles represent those that are not as important as stones, but important nevertheless like your job, money etc. The sand represent the stuff that are the least important to you like checking the mail, updating face book status etc'.
'If you fill your life with lots of sand, you will not have any space for things that are important to you. So it is important for you to fill your life with 'Stones' and a few 'Pebbles', with minimal space for 'Sand'.
'What does 'Coffee' mean?', wondered the class.
'Oh, no matter how full your life is, there is always space for a cup of Coffee with your friends', the Professor replied.
Story # 3: Glasses of different colours
A group of friends met up for their 25th Class Reunion. Hearing that their venerated Professor lived nearby, they decided to pay him a courtesy visit.
The professor warmly welcomed them and all sat in the lounge over cups of coffee.
There were a number of cups set on the table. A few of them were beautiful cups, brightly coloured with very good designs and a few were bland white cups.
They all took the bright coloured cups and filled coffee and started drinking.
'Do you notice something?', said the Professor, 'all of you have chosen bright, designer cups to drink your coffee. None of you have taken the bland, white cups.'
'However, what you are drinking, coffee, is what matters to you. The colour of the cups is just peripheral to the task of drinking coffee. But you instinctively chose the designer cups'.
'This is what happens in our lives too', Professor continued, 'What matters to us is the values we develop, the happiness that we earn as we progress in life, the strength of our families, the respect that we demonstrate to our parents, number of friends that we have, the valuable time that we spend with our kids as they grow up...'
'These are all important stuff', the Professor paused to let it sink in.
'But what do we focus on? We focus on making money, we focus on building beautiful bungalows, we focus on owning large amounts of property, we focus on our jobs...'
'These are all peripherals'.
'We focus on the peripherals, while missing the 'Coffee'. We work late at the office, on the latest deadline, while we miss our daughter's performance in the school play. We travel on 'Business' and miss our Spouses Birthday. We focus on finding faults with our near and dear while taking for granted the good things that they do for us day after day.'
'We pull our bed sheet tightly around us and miss the brilliant Sunrise that is welcoming us just outside our window'.
'It is important to identify the 'Coffee' in our lives and focus on them and the 'Designer Cups' in our lives and defocus on them', finished the Professor.