Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Some Thoughts...

This is just me journaling. :)

With school being back in session and my feelings of being overloaded, I have neglected writing here on this blog.  I know I don't have many followers, but the point is that I usually write here for ME.  And I tend to put myself last when it comes to "Things To Do".  Yes, I know that going to school is technically for me, but my reason for finishing my degree is to help other people.

I have a hard time saying no to things that are important for others, even if it makes me sacrifice time for things like eating or spending time with my husband.  I am working on this.  There needs to be balance in our lives in order for each of us to be successful.  It has been hard letting go of things that I want to do in exchange for things that are more vitally important right now.  As I have relied on the Spirit to guide me, I have made decisions that have drastically improved my situation and helped me to accomplish things I need to do for myself and still help those around me.  Even those these decisions are heartbreaking at times, I feel more at peace now, halfway into the semester, than I did at the beginning.  This helps me know I've made the right decision.

The General Women's Meeting at the end of last month was incredibly inspiring to me.  The very first talk, by Sis. Wixom, about our Divine Potential was beautiful.  It could have made me shut off, with the talk about giving birth at the beginning, but I can see such an amazing correlation between the act of birth and what our Spirits go through leaving Heavenly Father that I was fascinated.  No other mention about how each woman MUST give birth was even hinted at.  My favorite quote from that talk: "We have come to this earth to help build His kingdom and to prepare for the Second Coming of His Son, Jesus Christ."  NO generalization.  The fact that this quote allows for agency left me feeling happy and uplifted.  The meeting just got better as it went along.

I have enjoyed starting my journey into "ponderizing" the scriptures.  I feel that it is helping me keep them closer each day.  I usually read them twice a day, but I find myself revisiting the scripture I chose for the week to see if I can glean more inspiration from it.  I chose to take all of my ponderize scriptures from the New Testament because the later books are more difficult for me to understand.  It was been a wonderful experience.

I am excited to get to start on these new conference talks for my weekly study! :)  That's all for now.  I will hopefully be back again sometime soon.

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Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Need for Great Compassion

"A new commandment I give unto you,
That ye love one another; as I have loved you,
that ye also love one another."
John 13:34

I think that we can all agree that life is never what we hope it will be.  Sometimes it is infinitely more beautiful than we could ever dream.  Other times, it is more of a disappointment that we think we can bear.  This is the reason that our world is in such great need of more compassion and charity.

"And of some have compassion, making a difference..."
Jude 1:22

Some may see being kind as a sign of weakness.  Or, perhaps a sign of condoning sin.  There are even those we feel that compassion makes those around us dependent instead of independent.  I would say that when we show genuine Christ-like compassion and charity to those around us, it not only will make the world a kinder place, but it will lift those who would otherwise stay in the squalor of everyday life to a higher plane.

"Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord,
and he shall lift you up."
James 4: 10

In order to help those around us and to show genuine charity, there are many things that we have to do.  It is impossible for us to share love that we do not feel or have for God and for ourselves.  As we strive to strengthen our relationship with God and come to understand our divine potential as His children, we feel of the comfort and assurance that this life will be ok, no matter the circumstances we find ourselves in.  

"Love is the healing balm that repairs family relationships."
Dieter F. Uchtdorf

After we find greater love for God and ourselves, we are more capable of sharing that love in our families.  So many families in our world are filled with hatred, abuse, unkindness towards those we should show the most love to.  Resentment is a feeling that can be common in such close relationships.  Anger and disappointment will come to all.  These are failings of the flesh.  God can make them into feelings of greater love and kindness for those we are in contact with on a daily basis.  There are many people in the world who abandon family relationships as unfixable because of words said in a fit of rage or due to the inattention of personal feelings.  We turn to those who are not related to us for the comfort we should find in our homes.  

If we want peace in this world, I truly feel it must start in our homes.  This is one of the most difficult, yet rewarding, things that can ever be accomplished on this earth.  To create a heaven within our homes is to bring God's love into our lives each and every day.  It truly is as simple as forgiving and acting in the best interest of those we claim to love the most.  When all in the home participate in these acts, all are uplifted and all feel safe and cared for.

"Oh, how we need each other."
Marjorie P. Hinkley

As our homes become more divine places, the next step in sharing compassion and charity will be to reach out to those around us.  God will shine His mercy and wisdom into our hearts and show us those of His children that we can more greatly enrich and succor.  The more you serve, the greater your capacity for service will be.  The more you listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, the more God will speak to your heart and mind.  This is how the world is changed--in small, simple daily acts and not in the large gestures that come less frequently.  A phone call, a letter sent, a smile, an offer to help--these are the actions that will create peace on this earth.

"Many things are good, many are important,
but only a few are essential."
D. Todd Christofferson

Each step towards greater compassion can only happen successfully if the previous stepping stones are securely in place.  It might mean that we devote more time to family or to self when our foundation is not as firm as we need it to be.  To know this and to step back and work on what is essential in our individual circumstances will be what makes us a perfected soul.  Sometimes the two steps back will help us to realize that there are things of a more important nature that are being neglected.  

Never feel that following the promptings of the Spirit to take time for yourself or your family are selfish.  This is God teaching us what is most important in our lives.  Each of us is under a vitally important charge to do the best in our individual situations, and the choices we make are incredibly important not only to ourselves, but those around us.  No other man on earth can tell you what is most important for you in your life--these promptings will only come from a loving Heavenly Father who knows and loves you perfectly.  It is my prayer that we will ever be near to Him so that His Spirit can teach us what these essential things are each and every day, and that we will be seen as compassionate and kind in all we do and say.  I leave these thoughts with you in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, amen.  

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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sunday Sustenance

This week, I've really been trying to find things that will help me become a better person and help me overcome my shortcomings.  We all have them, none of us are perfect.  I suffer from severe self doubt, depression, anxiety, and general fear of life a lot of times.  I will strike out to do something new when it's comfortable enough.  The last few months, I've been changing this.  It's hard.  It's scary.  It's worth it.  Here are a few things that have helped me along the way.  

Note:  These are all talks given by Brene Brown, a therapist and researcher who has been working on learning about living a full life. There is cussing in some of these videos.  It's ok.  It's nothing so bad that it detracts from the message.  If any sort of cussing offends you, make the choice not to watch them.

The Power Of Vulnerability:  The only way to make connections is to bring those walls down, folks, even though it is PAINFUL.

Why Your Critics Aren't The Ones Who Count:  LOTS of gems in this one, but my favorite is, "There’s an ideal of what you're supposed to be. And what a lot of us end up doing is we orphan the parts of ourselves that don’t fit what that ideal is supposed to be. And what it leaves - when we orphan those parts of ourselves - is the critic."  Deep, true, scary.  I'm finding out that scary can be good, though!

Listening to Shame: Why we need shame in our lives, and how it can make us great.  This one is magnificent!

Blame: Learning to take responsibility so that you can be your best self.  I love her story about blame because I think it definitely relates to all of us!

Empathy vs. Sympathy:  This is actually the first thing of hers I found and loved.  It has completely changed how I am trying to interact with others.  If you won't watch any of the others, you NEED to watch this one.  No cussing, just truth.  Scary good truth.

One last note about this week's list--I know that they aren't at all "religious", but as I've read my scriptures, prayed for guidance, and sought answers, these videos literally are what I was led to as answers.  I love how God allows us to learn from each other, even if we don't all agree with things all the time.  Have a wonderful Sabbath and a fabulous week! :)

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Sunday, June 21, 2015

Sunday Sustenance

Those of you who follow me on Facebook (my real profile, not this blog's page) know that I have been going through some health issues.  As I write this, they still haven't been resolved, but I do know that the health issues I've had over the past years have strengthened my testimony of the Savior.  It ties into this week's Sunday Sustenance, so let's get to it!

The Living Christ: In my living room, there is a framed copy of this document with a painting of the Savior next to it.  As I have pondered my situation the past few weeks, I have seriously thought about the Savior and what He went through for us.  I realized that there was no one here on earth that He could truly count on.  He was surrounded by mortal men who did not fully understand what He was going through.  His only true support was the Father.  No wonder our Father was anguished as the Savior bled for us in Gethsemane and the Spirit had to leave for a time.  As I've sat in the chair in my living room, often in pain, often tired and weary, I see the painting of my Savior.  I am so grateful that He will never leave me, that the Father will never leave me, that my Savior has suffered in the exact same way that I have.  Knowing that there is someone who literally knows what I am going through and will not judge me, but will only show compassion towards me, has saved me many times.  The only times that our Savior and our Father leave us are when we do the walking away.  The only way that the Savior and our Father can help us is through the hands of those around us.  I have been very blessed with good friends who have done this the past few weeks.

True Faith: This meme really helped me get through some of the issues I've had to decide this week.  I am confident that I can do what the Lord asks of me, even if it's not my plan for me.

The Lesson of the Saggy Burrito in My Pants: Okay, this isn't so much "uplifting" as it was needed to help me know that there are others in the world that semi-know what I'm going through.  Needless to say, my issues do deal with bleeding and hemorrhaging, so this article came through and gave me a good chuckle, and a feeling that perhaps the internet can teach people something. ;)  I apologize now if there is any profanity in the article, I wasn't paying that much attention as I read it, I just needed to do so and am glad I did.

Mrs. Dalloway @ Aunt Peaches: Aunt Peaches is one of my favorite blogs.  I don't always agree with her opinions, but I DO always learn something when I visit her.  This post was eye opening, and led me to be more open about the health issues I have quite frequently, as well as try to resolve issues that have been left to fester.  It also helped me to love Aunt Peaches even more as a person and as my sister, whether I agree with her all the time or not.  We can't always agree with everything everyone says...that would be boring!  Perhaps I'll do a 5 Things I'm Afraid To Tell You someday, but that day is not today.

I think that's all for this week.  I know only one is "religious" so to speak, but I do know that God's hand is in my life and led me this week to the things I needed so I could have the sustenance to make it through.  I'll be back next week (hopefully) with more links for you! :)  Have a peaceful Sabbath and a Spirit filled week, all!

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Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sunday Sustenance

Yep, two weeks in a row! ;)  Let's get to this week's list of good news.

The Hope of God's Light: This simple story, told by a fallible human like me, strengthened my testimony that God lives and loves each of His children.  This man's journey to know God is amazing.

Matthew 11:30: A reminder of the willingness of our Savior to carry burdens too heavy for our shoulders.

How Far Can You Get On Kindness: This story has restored my faith in humanity.

I'll be back (fingers crossed) next week with more inspiration! :)

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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sunday Sustenance

I've decided, yet again, to be more proactive about my journaling here. ;)  So, I'm attempting something new, and I'm calling it "Sunday Sustenance".  I will make a list of things I have found that have uplifted me through the week and add them each week.  Who know how long each list will be, it is a mystery to even myself!  Enjoy!

The Comforter: A talk from the past General Conference by President Eyring that made me feel like someone understood.  It is like he looked into my heart and spoke the words found there about why it is IMPERATIVE that we serve those around us.

Students Recoginze That ALL Have Worth: Even the school janitor likes to be recognized as important.  Each job is important--the amount of money you make is not.  Without each other, the world would go nuts!

Going back to the first one: This story about a police officer who went FAR above and beyond the call of duty...or did he?  Love this one!

I'm sure there are more, these are just ones that impacted me to the point of remembrance.  I'll (fingers crossed) be back next week with more! :)

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

His Grace: 2 in 1 Post

Hello again.  Here is a pair of prints for you all--the same print, but with two different POPS of color.  This is one of my favorite quotes from the past April 2015 General Conference.

Which do you like better?  Orange, or pink?  Please feel free to print this and use it for PERSONAL USE only.  If you'd like a watermark free version, please email me and we can work something out.  For more copyright and disclaimer information, see the tab up top!  Enjoy!

Shake The World

Those who know me, or who have visited regularly, know that I am all about making a difference.  I found this quote and I KNEW I needed to make a print to hang in my home.

Please feel free to print this and use it for PERSONAL USE only.  If you'd like a watermark free version, please email me and we can work something out.  For more copyright and disclaimer information, see the tab up top!  Enjoy!

A Memorial Day Print

I've been working on some new prints for my home decor needs, and I thought I'd pass them on to you, as well!  This one is for Memorial Day and/or The Fourth of July.

Please feel free to print this and use it for PERSONAL USE only.  If you'd like a watermark free version, please email me and we can work something out.  For more copyright and disclaimer information, see the tab up top!  Enjoy!

Monday, April 27, 2015

The Side of Self Reliance We Don't Talk About

I'm back.  I know, it's always a long time in between posts.  Not many of them get read, anyway, so I don't really feel that guilty about it. ;)  I've had a lot of time to think about some things that have been bothering me, and yesterday constituted the "last straw", if you will.  I think it's time we get nitty gritty about the side of self reliance we don't want to talk about.  It probably isn't at all what you're it goes.

Merriam Webster defines self reliance as "reliance on one's own efforts and abilities."  This definition is preached from the pulpit, used to guilt people into shame for not being perfect, spoken in derision to those who have less that others and are considered "lazy".  This is NOT the side of self reliance that I want to talk about.  I think we all get that.

The side of self reliance that I would like to discuss is the side that involves covenants.  When you are baptized, you are making a covenant with God that you will do what Jesus would do. We covenant that we "are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort" (Mosiah 18:9).  Basically, this means that part of being self reliant, aka keeping covenants, is to help others as they struggle to do the same.  We cannot just sit and look down on those who are having a hard time and do nothing.  We cannot expect for them to just lift themselves up with absolutely no help.  

WE are the Savior's hands on the Earth.  We COVENANTED to be so.  If we won't help, nobody will help.  This means that the Atonement is not able to be fully utilized in the lives of those who are struggling.  That will be counted against us, especially if we have ignored promptings from the Spirit.

Now, some may say that people should tell us when they need help, and tell us specifics.  I reject that assumption.  If we are keeping our covenants, aka being self reliant, then we have the Spirit to guide us.  Following the Spirit's promptings is part of being self reliant.  When we expect others to tell us what to do, then we are NOT being self reliant.  Doctrine & Covenants 58:26 states, "For behold, it is not meet that I should command in all things; for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore he receiveth no reward."  When we do nothing, we gain nothing.

Again, some may say that their service is not wanted or appreciated.  I say, so what?  Neither was the Savior's service.  Even His greatest gift, the Atonement, goes unwanted and unappreciated on a daily basis.  Are we any better than He?  Absolutely not.  ANYTIME we do good, it is counted for our good with God.  Anytime we do nothing, especially after we are prompted, it will be counted against us.  

One last excuse I have heard is the time thing.  You know, the "I don't have time to do my own thing, let alone help others do theirs!" thing.  I reject this, as well.  There is plenty of time to do what God expects of us.  He makes it possible.  If we don't ever seem to have time, it is a priorities issue, not a time issue.

I'm not saying that any of us will be 100% perfect about acting on promptings, especially when it's towards someone we know will take it the wrong way, I'm just saying that's not really an excuse to do nothing.  Same with the time excuse.  When we trust God, there will be time and there will be good will.  I hold myself responsible for this, as well.  It's my motivation to ACT when prompted, even when it's hard.  I'm not perfect at this, but I am trying.

Well, those are my thoughts for today.  I leave you with a question--how self reliant are you really?  I know that I will be thinking about this and changing my life accordingly.  It will be specific for each of us, but I invite you to join me!  

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Act Now, or Forever Hold Your Peace

Okay, so looking at the title, just know I was trying to be clever and it probably failed.  But, there you have it! ;)  I have had some major life changing events happen over the past few months and so I wanted to share what I have learned.  I won't be going into detail about what led me to the knowledge, just let this sink in and think about it.

I think that in a world where uncertainty is a common feeling, we lack the courage to act.  I'm talking on a daily basis.  Raise your hand if you've ever thought or felt one of these things:

  1. If I go and talk to that person, they might think I'm crazy.
  2. I should call them, but what if they take it the wrong way?
  3. It's easier to do nothing, then there will be no conflict.
  4. I'll just ignore it.  It will go away.
  5. If I decide to say what I really think, what will others think about me?
Okay, so how many things?  If it's even just one, I hope to inspire you to change your though process today!  Even if you don't believe everything I write, I hope that you learn something that changes your perspective and helps you grow.  Let's break these down one by one.  Here are my arguments for action:
  1. You're not crazy, right?  Or, aren't we all a little crazy?!  What if they truly needed someone to just recognize and notice that they were there?  We all need to be seen.  Go and connect!
  2. Are your intentions good?  Is it your desire to do good?  Then even if they take your service the wrong way, it will be counted to your benefit.  God can only bless those who act.  Bless yourself as you bless others?
  3. Without conflict, there is not growth.  Moving forward means embracing the conflict and finding a resolution.  If both parties do nothing, nothing changes.  You're right--if you're the only one willing to change, the relationship does not change.  But you do.  Be willing to change yourself--you can't make a difference without starting with you!
  4. Ignoring things don't make them disappear.  Unkind feelings, that mess in your room, the feeling that you aren't well--those do not just disappear because you ignore it.  They can get worse.  Doing nothing is the antithesis of growth.  Stagnant water, it's not drinkable.  Be the water that cleanses--cleanse your life!
  5. Who cares?  Honestly.  I'm not being trite, but who cares?  What if there was one, just ONE, person who needed to hear your opinion.  Your life matters.  Your opinion matters.  We live in a world where we need diversity, yet it isn't truly tolerated or valued.  Be the one and only you--the right person/people will benefit!
And that's all for now.  I'm sorry that I'm still up in the air about posting.  I am trying to fit it all in and so my thoughts blog gets the brunt of it.  I do make lists of topics that I want to write about, so stay tuned!  One day they'll be here for you to read. ;)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

False Prophets, Sometimes Known as Friends

There was an interesting conversation going on recently about false prophets and our need to stay away from them.  I understand that many people in leadership positions can lead people astray, but I think that in order to avoid false prophets, we need to know what the term really means.  I believe it's more than those in power leading their followers astray.  I think it happens on a daily basis in our lives if we are not careful.

I find the verse I used in my header very insightful.  It comes from The Book of Mormon in 3 Nephi 14:15.  The full verse reads, "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves." If we think about this verse, a false prophet is just someone who really doesn't want what is best for you.  Do you let these people into your life?  Are you one of these people?

There are a few ways that people act as false prophets in our lives and we allow it, as well as ways we act as false prophets to others.  This is something that I am working on now ever since I had this thought.  Here are some ways I believe we or other people act as false prophets that we might not consider:

  1. Supporting each other in unkind feelings.
  2. Telling someone they would be justified in abusive acts, whether emotional, verbal, or physical.
  3. Laughing at actions that are not funny.  I'm not talking about someone tripping and they start the laughing, I'm talking laughing at a sarcastic comment that was made after someone tried to bear their soul.  Or laughing at a joke that was told in bad taste.  You get the drift.
  4. Expressing blanket statements as if they are truth for everyone.  We all have our own journey, worry about yours more than others.
  5. Refusing to see the other side of a story.
I could go on, but these are the things I've been thinking of lately.  There is a reason why these constitute actions of false prophets.  It's because they are perpetuating false doctrines and are not Christlike.  False prophets speak false principles.

Now, I'm not sitting here judging others from some castle where I feel that I am better than others.  I fall into these same issues at times in my life as well.  The question is, what can we do about it?  I think the answer is simple to state, but hard to truly put into action.  The answer is this: Love One Another.

That's all for me today.  I've disabled comments again because this post is meant for reflection.  If you'd like to email me your thoughts, you may do so.  I'll be back soon with another post!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Love & Loyalty

I'm a pretty visual learner.  Sometimes things are told to me, and I just forget them.  When I see something, though, it usually sticks.  There are times when I'm scrolling through social media and something screams to me, "PAY ATTENTION TO ME!  I'M IMPORTANT!"  That's what happened with the graphic below.  Read it and then think about it for just a little bit.  Then read my feelings about this quote...

Loyalty is a tricky thing to accomplish sometimes.  Sometimes someone we are loyal towards has disappointed us. OUCH.  That really hurts, doesn't it?  But I think that loyalty overcomes that disappointment.  I want to break down loyalty that should occur in our daily lives.  Hopefully I say something that makes you think! :)

Firstly, we should be loyal to God. This means keeping all covenants that we have made with Him.  It also means trusting His wisdom as we go through life.  This is difficult at times due to the fact that life is HARD.  Now, don't tell me you're life is all lollipops and rainbows.  I will not believe you.  Life is HARD.  Life is MESSY.  Life throws MAJOR curve-balls at us.  But, if we are working on becoming our best selves and keeping the commandments, we should be loyal to God and His plan for us.

Next, we should be loyal to ourselves.  This can be the hardest thing to do, especially for us women.  The truth of the matter, though, is that you cannot truly love someone and be loyal to them unless you love yourself and are loyal to yourself first.  You have to know that, as you are keeping commandments and trying your best, you will be guided in your life.  Nobody should make you question your motives if you know they are done for good.  Nobody can make you feel worthless without your permission.  DO NOT GIVE IT TO THEM.

Third of all, let's talk about loyalty to our spouse.  It is very tempting at times to complain about what your significant other does.  I believe that if you share a concern with your spouse, it strengthens the relationship.  Sometimes your spouse is not willing to work on the issue.  Give them time.  Continually lift them up and speak kindly about them to others.  If the issue at hand is vitally important, seek guidance from one confidential source.  Do not spread your heartbreak and disappointment around.  This can lead to so many more problems.  When you were married, you made promises.  Be the person who keeps them, even when it is hard.  

In addition to our spouse, we should be loyal to our entire family.  You carry a name that has been passed down for generations.  What do other people think about that name?  Do your actions make them want to be a part of your family?  Does your behavior set a good example for others?  Do you speak kindly about and to your children?  Your parents?  Your siblings?  Your other family members?  If not, consider making a change.  Families are meant to help and lift each other.  If you don't have this in your family, YOU be the change you want to see!  As you become more loyal to your family name, others in your family will follow suit.

Our friends are also people who deserve our loyalty.  A true friendship is a rare find.  It's like tripping over a giant diamond when you were out for your daily walking of the dog.  If you want to build friendships that are based in loyalty, they have to begin with positive ground.  You cannot have a genuine friendship over a mutual dislike of something or someone.  When you show your negative side first, that is what will stick in the mind of the person with whom you are acquainting yourself.  They will remember this the first time they do something remotely annoying and flee in fear that your judgment will turn on them.  Don't be that person.  Be the person who is kind and loving, who sees the good in all.  Be loyal to those you call friend.  Do not allow others to speak unkindly about them.  Stand up for them and be true.

Finally, I want to talk about something that you may not have thought of.  If you work, it is necessary to be loyal to your employer.  This doesn't mean you have to agree with everything they do, but it does mean keeping your commitments.  Being on time, only taking time off when it is necessary, having a good attitude, and being a good follower are ways to be loyal to your employer.  When you hear someone complaining about the boss, either walk away or say something positive!  Don't get dragged down by the office gossip that happens all too frequently.  Be loyal to the person you work for.  It always pays off!

I know that we could spend time talking about each and every relationship that we have and the role that loyalty plays, but we won't take that time today.  I know that I'll be spending more time pondering this topic and I hope you will, too!  Leave me a comment to let me know your thoughts--I love to learn and grow from you all! Until next time, please remember that:





Saturday, February 28, 2015

Spiritual Awakening: Taking Back My Blog

Hi, everyone. I'm not sure how many people this post will reach, but that's ok because this post is for me.  I've been on a journey of self-discovery the past few months since I had my last miscarriage last summer.  We won't go there, I am in a place where rehashing would undo everything good that I've worked through.  But as I contemplated how far I've come in the last few months and the blessings I've received, I realized that I haven't been true to myself.  This spiritual awakening came to me in a few ways.  Let me go into detail...

Firstly, I realized that I was putting far too much weight on the opinions and actions of people that do not have my best interests at heart.  That was toxic.  I ended many connections because of this.  These people are not bad people, I just had to get away from certain ideals and ways of thinking that were not helping me grow.  I believe that when a person can see that it's time to move on, they should do so or else they will be stunted in their personal growth.  I have never really been one of those people.  I have a few amazing friends that I have had my whole life, but usually I don't keep many people close to me.  That only ends up bringing more misery because large groups tend to be competing with each other and I have never felt the need to compete in order to prove that I am worthy of being and of love.  I also feel that you should never buy into that way of thinking, too.

Secondly, I have an amazing husband.  He is forever trying to better himself to reach his full potential.  I am extremely lucky that I am the beneficiary of this desire a lot of the time.  He recently received two awards at work because of his training and I am so proud of him.  I am so grateful that he takes the time to share what he learns with me.  This is where we truly connect in our homes--learning and growing together and not just separately.  He shared with me some TED talks that changed my life.  Watch these in order for the biggest impact.

Here's the first video.~

Here's the second video.~

And here's one that's not a TED talk, 
but I found on my own at a time I truly needed to hear this information.~

Thirdly, as all this was going on, I increased my daily scripture study.  The more time I spend in God's word, the more I feel His influence in His life.  All answers I have needed have come from reading the scriptures, especially in The Book Of Mormon.  I have come to learn more about my Savior and His true character as I've read The New Testament.  I feel that He is a person, that He loves me, and that He is our perfect example.  Reading along with daily prayer has made me realize that I can do hard things.  But I don't always want to do them.

This is what my day usually looks like, can you relate?~

For some of you, just doing the dishes right now be a "hard thing", so please fill out your own mental "TO DO" list and follow along with me as I give myself, and YOU, a pep talk.  We know that our Savior suffered for us.  We know that He took upon Himself our pains, sorrows, and griefs as well.  He knows us perfectly.  Unfortunately, there is another who knows us from the beginning, too.  That is Satan.  He knew us before we came to Earth, just as the Savior did.  While the Savior uses this information to tell us that in spite of our weaknesses, hard things are possible, Satan would have us believe that because of our weakness, hard things are not possible.  Who gets to choose which is the truth?  We do.  Who will we listen to?

"I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." ~John 14:18

"Yea, verily I say unto you,
if ye will 
come unto me ye shall have eternal life.
Behold, mine 
arm of mercy is extended towards you,
and whosoever will come, him will I receive;
and blessed are those who come unto me." ~3 Nephi 9:14

"Behold, the kingdom is yours.
And behold, and lo, I am 
with the faithful always.
Even so. Amen." ~Doctrine & Covenants 62:9

God has given us all gifts.  He expects us to use them for good.  Today, I am pledging to do more hard things each day.  You can do this, too!  Just make a choice, and let's work together.  The more hard things we do, the easier it will become.  I can promise this, because the Savior promised it first, and He keeps His promises.

And so, with that, I declare that I am taking back THIS blog.  It will be my place to journal my journey.  I will share things and be open and vulnerable.  The one thing I will not do at this time is allow comments.  If you would like to share with me, please feel free to email me.  If the reason for emailing me is to tell me that you disagree, please know that I will not engage.  I am taking back my blog, I am taking back the power to say "no" when things are inappropriate in my life.  I hope that you can respect that wish.  Until next time, please remember that: