One of the favorite things I have done this year is to ask more questions about a persons' history. Simple questions. Listening questions. I wanted to learn a story or two about who they are how their lives were shaped. Just yesterday I learned from an uncle how a vacuum came crashing into their bedroom window when they were first married. I have giggled and giggled just thinking about how startled my aunt would be and what the upstairs neighbor must have been thinking trying to swing her vacuum down to the parking lot. It's such a simple story, and I can see it all in my mind, and I will smile thinking about it for years to come.
It left me thinking about all the stories in my life that I have written down in my journal and those forgotten. No one is going to want to go a reread what I have written within those pages, although I will continue to write. It reminded me again why I started this blog. I started it for my children to come back and read the stories not only of their lives but mine. An easy place to share a simple story. The last few years I have forgotten that purpose or made it a priority with all the other demands on my time, but we are all pressing commitments, deadlines, and projects. I need to practice what I preach: 10 minutes a day. Everyone has 10 minutes a day for one story or memory.
Today I am committing to writing those stories here. If you want to join along find a medium that you can be consistent with. I wasn't consistent in my handwritten journal. I only have so much time to handwrite, and I am so much faster at typing, so I am changing the format. Here are a few ideas that might help:
- Create a quick post on your Facebook or Instagram account or start a new account that only you can read.
- Record yourself while you talk about your story, sometimes that is easier than writing Load the FamilySearch Memories app to your phone and record the prompt directly to your FamilySearch profile for a quick.
- Write in a journal or word document if typing is easier.
- Start with a photo and include that with your story.
Find what works for you and if you have to try a few things that is okay. Paul Nauta, a wonderful man, wrote about creating a New Year's resolution of writing and sharing your stories for FamilySearch. You can read it here for added motivation.
Rather than just looking at this as goals with starting and stopping points, I am looking to change or refine some habits using goals. A habit is an acquired behavior followed until it has become almost involuntary.
“The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.” ― Samuel Johnson
I have good habits, and I have not so good habits. I want to change the weaker habits into strengths. I want to rewire my brain in certain areas so that I am stronger physically, mentally and spiritually. I loved President Monson's encouragement, " We need to bear in mind that people can change. They can put behind them bad habits." (Thomas S. Monson, "See Others As They May Become," General Conference, October 2012). Sometimes as I work on a goal year after year with seemingly little success I wonder if I am can change, but I can and I will. I am going to work on the habits to help me be successful.
1. I want to make sure I make God a priority every single day this year, no matter what happens. I wrote more about this yesterday in this post. I am trying to focus on the essential things that bring me peace.
2. I want to lose the weight I put back on this past year. I only went up one pant size, so I'm still maintaining muscle mass, but I want to continue my health journey with a more concerted effort now that I am healthy once again.
3. I want to be more consistent in sharing our stories here. As I look back on what I have written in the past, I find a treasure. I want to continue this once again.
4. I want to learn to enjoy fasting. I want to learn to look forward to fasting. There is great spiritual power in a fast and this year I am going to fast at least one day a week.
5. I want to draw or paint something every day. It doesn't have to be big, just something. I still have a goal to be an artist. I don't know what that looks like, but I want to continue learning. Consistency is going to be the key.
6. I want to learn to manage my money better. I'm terrible with a budget and savings is a foreign word, so I'm going to do better this year.
7. I want to finish projects. I have so many unfinished quilts that I would love to clean out the cupboards and see people wrapped up in them. For Christmas, I helped finish a quilt my mother started many years ago, and it helped me remember how much I love to quilt, and I want to get back into working with fabric.
8. I want to dejunk the house. It's not necessarily junk, but we have too much stuff. We don't need all this stuff. So I'm going to go from room to room and purge. Keep only the essential and donate the rest.
It seems like a big list, but I have an entire year to work on things. A little bit every day.