Saturday, July 31, 2010
In the wee hours of the morning before I was fully awake, I heard or I just had this thought; "Love conquers all." It was incredibly distinct and powerful enough that I knew it wasn't really my own thought but one that was purposefully planted. I have come to realize that I have been guilty of using unproductive and admittedly manipulative tools to change or control those that I love the most. I have recently discovered that feeling sorry for myself, anger, and the silent treatment are methods of trying to get someone to do or feel what I want, and that they are really destructive, if not immediately but in the long run. Control is Satan's method and anything that reeks of trying to control instead of love can destroy a relationship.
The only effective and building tool in a relationship is love. Love motivates better listening and understanding. Love motivates forgiveness. Love motivates kindness. Love compels me to take responsibility and look to only changing myself. Sometimes love will drive me to take a stand to defend righteousness but only with pure motives and real intent. but not to control.
Love is healing, builds trust and confidence, and encourages closeness. Love does conquer all and is the prevention and the cure for the social ills of our day. I am committed to pray to love in the way that God loves the people in my life.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Not only is it important to draw closer to God but to make sure that everything I do is for his glory and not mine. Wow, that means that I give up pride and realize that when and if I ever find that I have a talent, that I realize He gets the credit.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
It is tempting to become a people pleaser but I am finding that I would do better to only try and please my Heavenly Father. When I draw closer to Him and I seek to please Him then I will also automatically please the people that really matter in the way that is truly best.
Posted by Tanya at 6:14 AM
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
I have come to realize that one of the powerful messages of the Book of Mormon is the danger of being held captive. The commandments are a loving protection of any form of captivity or addiction. Our free agency was so important that our Savior was willing to be sacrificed in order for is to have the opportunity to choose and to fail. Today Satan is still trying to take away our free agency by temptations that lead to addictions. I want to always remember that the commandments are a loving offering to protect me from addictions and that if I ever feel punished for bad choices, that the punishment comes from the natural consequences of sin and not from my Heavenly Father that is only trying to protect me from pain and from captivity.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Besides having a sugar addiction, I have discovered that I can sometimes be addicted to negative emotions. When withdrawal sets it then I seem to interpret an experience in a way that will feed my addiction to those negative emotions. For example, I think I sometimes crave feeling sorry for myself (because by golly, no one else will! Boo hoo!) and so then I will read into a situation a reason to start feeling that emotion. I know it's weird but it is the honest truth but now that I know that I will focus on getting more kudos from positive emotions so that I will start seeing everything in a more joyful way. I want to become addicted to joy instead.
Posted by Tanya at 9:07 PM
Monday, July 26, 2010
In my first college life I was a marketing major and I learned about the illegal marketing tool of "bait and switch." For those who don't know what that means (and frankly don't really care) it is when a store will advertise a special price on an item to bait a customer into the store and then purposely not have it available and then proceed to offer another similar item at a higher price.
That is somewhat what happens when we date and then get married. We do a great job "advertising" or "baiting" by trying to look our best and being on our best behavior. Then we get married and "switch" and let our appearances go and turn into nags. It should be illegal and if it were, being the rule keeper that I am, I might have been more cautious about being the kind of person I portrayed myself to be while dating. Instead there was a certain metamorphous on our wedding day, but instead of a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, I was funny girl that turned into a Joan Crowford.
Posted by Tanya at 6:23 AM
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Sometimes I get out of some of my healthy habits. By sometimes, I mean all the time! One healthy habit I have neglected for some time is my morning herbal tea. Some of my favorites are licorice, peppermint, or detox. Trust me, because I drink them without a sweetener, they aren't really that tasty at first but I have learned to really like them. I especially like the yogi tea brand because on the tea bag is always a little thought that is usually quite insightful. It's a great way to start the day.
Posted by Tanya at 6:37 AM
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Friday, July 23, 2010
Thursday, July 22, 2010
I sometimes think that hardcore addicts have an advantage over the rest of us who just have addictions but can still qualify for a temple recommend. Addictions such as chocolate, shopping, gossiping, judging, nose picking, etc., don't seem to qualify for the big guns. Since I am duped into thinking that my addiction isn't that serious, then I don't often realize the need to "turn it over to a higher power," as documented in the 12-step program. I am then led to believe that it isn't that bad and that certainly with a little will power, I can overcome it on my own. I then can go years being "insane" and "doing the same thing and expecting different results," because that is the definition of insanity.
An addiction, however, that is less accepted in our culture becomes more obvious that extra help is needed and therefore, those addicts might come to know the necessity and benefits of drawing on the powers of heaven. I am committed to recognizing that any change I want to make will depend on the power of prayer and drawing on the powers from heaven.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
After realizing that I need to change and having a strong desire to change, the next step is to have a strong belief in my ability to change. I feel like this is a form of faith in my ability to get out of my comfort zone and giving myself permission to feel deserving of the positive changes that I know would be good for me and that my Heavenly Father wants for me. I know that I will subconsciously resist change if I don't really believe I can achieve it or that I don't actually believe I deserve it. I will talk about the next step tomorrow because to end here is really believing that I have the power to change on my own and thus would be denying Christ. Here again is a great example of "enduring to the end"--the end being Christ. The means to that end is having the belief and faith in myself to know that He can work through me.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
After accepting that change is okay and even desirable, then the next step for me is to have a strong desire to change. I have found with some events in my life, that Heavenly Father allows difficulties to provide a greater incentive to want to change. I realize that one of the purposes of adversity is to feel pain and thus give me a chance to take a hard look at my life, and specifically myself, in order to discover what needs to change. It is sometimes pain that is my greatest motivator to have a magnified desire to change.
Monday, July 19, 2010
I was watching "What Not To Wear" the other day and it came to me how difficult change can be, even positive change. I guess an inability to change something becomes most evident in how someone dresses. It is easy to get stuck in the styles from my younger years and cluelessly thinking that I am still in style while I am strutting around in bell-bottom pants. One thing that cracks me up is when my hair gets wet and goes naturally curly, and someone invariable asks me if I have a permanent. I then ask them if they really think I would pay good money for that out-of-date style. Of course they are probably thinking that the hair is only consistent with the style of clothes.
I love watching "What Not To Wear" because it is exciting to watch how someone changes on the outside and how it changes them on the inside also. It helps remind me that I must constantly be changing my style as a symbolic reminder of changing the inside of me also.
Posted by Tanya at 9:56 AM
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Recently I was visiting my mom in the hospital while she was recovering from back surgery. Across from her room was this room labeled "Nutrition Services." The only thing I could see inside through the window was this pop machine. If hospitals consider soda pop nutritious, no wonder we have a health care crisis.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
I have learned that there can be a childhood programming that needs to be reprogrammed. My programming pattern became one of pessimism or negativity BUT I still have a choice to change and the God-given power to do so. It takes practice and help from above to change my mind set of seeing the glass half full instead of half empty. I now choose to consciously think about the blessing or benefit of anything that I see or that happens to me. I know that the start of the Book of Mormon has that profound lesson in it in comparing Nephi's positive, faithful attitude with his brothers' whining and complaining. Heavenly Father put that lesson in the beginning of the book as opposed to the end because He knew that I would start reading the Book of Mormon over and over again and not often get to the end because I needed that repetitive message. I am grateful for the scriptures and how they can change how I see myself and what I need to do differently. I am committed to seeing the goodness, blessing, and benefit of anything I encounter.
Posted by Tanya at 5:30 AM
Friday, July 16, 2010
I talked about breathing when I first started this blog, but I have realized over and over again the value of a deep, cleansing breath. It is a great energizer, relaxant, stress and anxiety reducer, and way to truly become connected to my spirit and Heavenly Father's. I have often underestimated it's power. Once again, it's the simple things...
Posted by Tanya at 8:00 AM
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Seriously, sometimes I underestimate the power of the simple things like smiling. What I do on the outside can so change how I feel on the inside. I am committed to wearing a smile. It feels so good and takes such little effort, and it not only changes how I feel but can do so much for others. It's the little things in life...
Posted by Tanya at 6:29 AM
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
I loved in this book how this group of women were given an assignment to plan a stake relief society meeting. Instead of just getting together to plan invitations and refreshments, they decided to put into practice having a heart like our Heavenly Father and then coming back together to report on their experience. Novel idea. I know that I have often been so caught up on the frivolous stuff in a church assignment that I forget what the real purpose is. I am committed to putting more energy in trying to have a heart like His rather than finding the perfect tablecloth or cookie recipe or (for my family's benefit) having everything match.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
I realized another meaning for me in enduring to the end. The other day when I was at the park with my grandchildren, we played a game of tag in and around the playground equipment. I was grateful that I have continued my habit of exercising each morning because I enjoyed running around and flying down the slide as I tried to catch them or run away from them. It came to me that all my exercising was more than just checking it off the list and getting it done. It has a greater purpose or end result in keeping me in good physical shape so that I can play with my grandkids. I even did under dog as I pushed them on the swing; even though I tripped on the mat and went flying and rolled in the bark. At least they got a great laugh and I didn't get hurt.
Posted by Tanya at 11:21 PM
Monday, July 12, 2010
Everything good points to the glory of God. I can't take any credit for anything that I have or have done because everything is a gift from Him and all the glory goes to Him. There isn't anything that I should be proud of because I don't deserve the credit. Heavenly Father does.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
I want to clarify what I am going to say. I believe that we are all entitled to our own personal revelation especially about scripture, and with that said, I also believe that what is a right interpretation for me isn't necessarily what is right for someone else. I want anyone reading this to be clear about that pertaining to what I am about to say. I am certainly not someone else's authority when it comes to interpreting scriptures.
Christ said that the law of Moses has an end in Him. I believe that we still have performance based laws that are our means to coming unto Christ. Christ said He is the beginning and the end. I know that it is important for me to realize that the laws and ordinances aren't an end in and of themselves but they are designed to end in Chirst. They are a vehicle to bring me closer to my Savior. For me "endure to the end" has taken on a whole other meaning in that I have to make sure I don't just stop at checking off the performance but that I make certain that the performance is actually helping me feel more love for God and others. If my performance is making me feel proud or judging someone else's performance or lack thereof, then I am not enduring to Christ and His love. I am committed to making certain that what I do is actually bringing me closer to my Savior.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
There is a book with this title that opened my eyes to the possibility that artificial rewards take the focus off of the inherit or natural reward and people eventually loose interest in an activity that has a unrelated reward attached. There is a study that found that between two groups of children, the ones that were rewarded for using magic markers lost interest in using them as opposed to the other group without a reward attached. The group that wasn't given a reward remained interested in coloring with magic markers suggesting that they benefitted from the natural pleasure from using the markers. So I guess I had better stop rewarding myself with sweets for a job well done and instead just savor the good feeling of a clean house. Drat. But I guess getting "full" on a job well done is less fattening than ice cream.
Posted by Tanya at 9:00 PM
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Sometimes I have to pretend I am a tape player. I is a good idea for me to rewind and figure out what is the root of a problem. For example, if I get sick then I go backwards to try and figure out what I have done that might have contributed to my susceptibility to illness to prevent it in the future.
Other times I need to fast forward and anticipate what the consequences are going to be of a present decision. Like when I see a tempting dessert, I should stop and push the fast forward button and appreciate how yucky I will feel after the sugar has past my taste buds. It is the same thing if I was tempted to have gages (spelling ?) put in my ears. I would want to look forward and picture my grandchild saying, "Grandma, my what big ear holes you have."
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Monday, July 5, 2010
It is so nice to be older and now figure out that I don't have to seek validation by proving myself to others. I can wear my depends inside or outside of my pants and not care what people think. I don't really have to justify myself or please someone else, I just need to have my heart in the right place and act accordingly. It feels good to work at being true to myself and true to what my Heavenly Father created me to be.
Posted by Tanya at 10:03 PM
Sunday, July 4, 2010
I use to be like a pez dispenser willingly and freely giving out advice, opinions, etc. Notice I said use to be. I am avoiding saying I am because I am changing. I am no longer claiming that I am something when it is something I don't want to be.
Today I had the rare experience of someone actually specifically seeking me out for advice (I had to miss Sunday School but hey, a girl has to make sacrifices, right?). That was weird because people usually don't need to ask for advice since I have always been willing to automatically flip back the top of my head and push out the advice just like pez candy. Once again I am reminded of what John Lund taught; there are only three things we can effectively do in a relationship, love, be an example, and teach only when invited. I am working at keeping my pez dispenser shut even though it seems to have a defective spring that tends to flip open so easily.
Posted by Tanya at 9:20 PM
Saturday, July 3, 2010
The interesting thing about doing this self improvement blog is that I am realizing so much I need to improve. I asked what I need to work on and I am receiving all kinds of answers. It is pretty painful actually, and now I know even more so how much repenting and improving I need to do.
To help with this change, I decided while hiking the other day that I need to do the same thing for all the other dimensions of my life that I did years ago to program myself to exercise everyday. My positive addiction to exercise came after walking and saying to myself, "I am doing this every day for the rest of my life."
Now I will take each point and while I walk say a positive "I am" statement in order to develop positive thoughts and beliefs about my spiritual, mental, emotional, and social self just like I did with my physical self. Because I have experienced the fact that my body believes every word I say especially when I say "I am...", I know this will be beneficial. (I just won't be doing it into a mirror like that guy on Saturday Night Live, just so you know) I am what I think and say I am. I am not addicted to sugar.
Posted by Tanya at 10:47 PM
Friday, July 2, 2010
One of my favorite indulgences is to relax in a bathtub. The main reason I love it so much is that I receive some great ideas and inspiration when I am enveloped in water. Even though it is very therapeutic and enlightening, I have discovered that sometimes I have attached a negative connotation to the word indulge and believe it is always a bad thing. Having that Puritan attitude and belief that something that feels great must be evil then I resist being good to myself. However, the dictionary has two kinds of definitions for indulge--one is positive and one is negative. It is possible for me to "indulge" and still be a goody little two shoes. (Where did that saying come from?) In fact, I have discovered that unless I am good to myself then I can't really be genuinely good to someone else without eventually resenting them.
Posted by Tanya at 9:01 PM
Thursday, July 1, 2010
I just went and watched the movie Eclipse. I loved the graduation speech about making mistakes. If I accept the fact that I am going to make mistakes then I can be more open to learning from my mistakes. That doesn't mean that I want to ever plan to do something wrong and intentionally sin; but after the fact, it is nice to know that there can be something good that comes from it. I am just grateful for the Atonement that makes it possible that I don't have to continue to suffer for my errors but gives me an opportunity to be cleansed and healed, and the freedom to make it into a great life lesson. If the number of mistakes indicates the level of growth, then I am a redwood tree; and I guess I can count the purpose of my life is to teach other people what not to do.
Posted by Tanya at 10:38 PM