Let me start with a great quote by LDS church President, Ezra Taft Benson:
"When we put God first, all other things fall into their proper place or drop out of our lives. Our love of the Lord will govern the claims for our affection, the demands on our time, the interests we pursue, and the order of our priorities."
Now that I was feeling more energetic (and could stay awake through my scripture study!), I knew that nothing else in my life could improve without first taking care of my spiritual needs.
- Pray morning and night- I've never been good at consistently remembering to pray in the morning. And sometimes I just want to crawl into bed at night. But it has been good. Really good, to try extra hard. And additionally, I tried to really mean it all and not just run through some of the standard, over used phrases, like "I'm grateful for this day...". I also kept myself from feeling like my prayers had to be, ya know, epic. Sometimes they are really short, and that's okay as long as it felt good.
- Family prayer morning & night, Family scripture study- For the first time ever, we have been very diligent and consistent with our scripture study together. I want our child(ren) to know the importance of doing these things together.
- Personal Scripture Study- Not only did I want to be sure to read my scriptures everyday, I wanted to make sure I actually got something out of it each time. Now, every time I read, I use a little journal to write down thoughts. I make sure I write something down. This has made me look at the words differently, because when you are looking for something that applies to your life or that will help you, then Oh! There it is! How did I not notice that before?
- Meditate Daily- this was well intended, but only happened a few times. If it didn't happen before the house was awake, it didn't happen. I will keep trying. I think it is important to take time to really listen.
- Write every day in 3 Word Journal- For Christmas 2010, my parents gave me and my siblings a 3 WordJournal . I'm betting some of them stuck it on a shelf somewhere, but I have actually been using mine and I really like it. I won't explain it in detail to you, but I would suggest you check out the link I gave and read the "15 Things..." on the main page. I'm already a regular journal write, but this month I also utilized this journal everyday (I've already been using it on and off). It has helped me remember past memories of my life that can help me realize why I am the way I am, spiritual experiences that were important that I have forgotten, and lots of other great things.
- Start attending temple at least 2x monthly- Before Atticus was born, I worked in the Boston temple every Wednesday for several hours. I miss it, and as many of you know, it's easy to neglect it when you have children. But there is no good excuse when I live 5 minutes away- closer than when I was in Utah! I did go twice, and I'm so glad. I will make sure to put it on the calendar at the beginning of every month. For those of you who are unfamiliar with LDS temples or why we believe it is so important to go often, check this out.