Monday, December 15, 2008

New year, new goals...

My family: Thanksgiving 2008

This has been the best year of my life. I was blessed to be able to do and see so many things. I have the greatest friends and the best family. The only thing I worry about is that next year won't be as great. I'm sure I will find some more adventure along the way, I always do!

As I look back on the past year and the lessons I learned, I decided that this year I would make a list of things I want to learn next year. That way, I can actively pursue my future, rather than passively accept what comes my way. Life is too short to be passive.

I had a friend about a year ago who died this last summer in a boating accident. He was amazing. He knew more about love, charity, and humility than any other person I have become acquainted with. He wrote a list of rules that he decided to live by after losing his hand when a firework exploded in it. I want to share them with you. These are the things that I want to learn this next year. I have also added a few of my own. 

The Rules

  • People are always more important
  • When I am about to get mad about something, be it a dirty dish, or a rude comment, I will try my hardest to remember that the person is always more important. By saying something about it or reacting harshly, it only makes the situation worse. More feelings get hurt, and contention increases. 
  • Do what you need to do when you need to do it whether you want to or not.
  • I should get paid for how amazing I am at procrastinating. I save everything until the last minute. I have been getting better but I have a lot of room for improvement. Think of how less stressed we would all be if we just took a little extra time to get things done early. 
  • I am not a victim, ever.
  • Playing the victim never solves anything. Sympathy gets you nowhere.  We make our own choices and must accept the consequences. We each have the power to recognize the need for change in our own behavior. There are always people that are hurting worse than us. Life is great. 
  • Purity is power.
  • We will be blessed if we are true and faithful in everything we do. Power comes from
    harnessing our desires. We will be blessed for keeping ourselves un-spotted from the world. Bro. Bott says never to do anything that can jeopardize our eternal rewards. 
  • Leave it better than when you found it.
  • No matter where we go, we can see room for improvement. Why not pitch in and help in the smallest ways to make this world as beautiful as it was intended to be. Not only places need beautifying, but also people. We can leave people better than we found them by making sure they know how important they are to us and to our Father in Heaven. It takes little effort to make someones day brighter. 
  • Life is a joy, a journey in becoming like my Heavenly Father.
  • Elder Wirthlin taught, "Come what may, and love it." That really is the only thing we can do sometimes. There is no sense in getting angry over the little things.  We can lift one another up by doing that, and our burdens will seem lighter. Life will throw curve balls, but many home-runs have been hit off of those same pitches. I will not be defeated by the unexpected events that transpire over this next year and beyond. I will love them, and thank my Heavenly Father for continuing to test my spiritual strength so that I might be prepared for any other trials that I will experience.
  • Live with purpose.
  • We all have a purpose here on Earth. Instead of finding our purpose, we can make our purpose. One of my favorite quotes is "Life is not about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself."  We decide what we become. We have the power. What a chance we take when we let others decide who and what we are.  
  • Be a Nobel servant, not a self-serving Nobel
  • This counsel came from President Uchtdorf in this last conference. What a powerful statement and phrase to live by. When we are constantly seeking what others can do for us, it will never be enough. If we do things for people, expecting nothing in return, we will be blessed greatly with humility and joy. When we receive something in return, we are happy and elated to have been thanked so warmly. The opposite would be a dreadfully pessimistic view at life. Life is not a zero-sum game.
  • Take every chance to learn something new                                                           Learning is one of my favorite things to do. I love to pick up a book and look at the cover and imagine what is inside. To think that when I am done reading the book the information lives on in my head, to be used in the future, is amazing! I never go anywhere without a book. I love to read and hope to be able to read a lot over the next year. 

  • Theses rules are great reminders of what we are on this Earth to do. I hope you all have a great end of the year. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

    Me and Avery

    Love this girl!!!

    She did this to herself...