The Happiness Project is in full swing, and I am excited to report on my September resolutions.
Spirituality: Study everything you can about prayer and communication with God
This was a fantastic exercise to spur my personal scripture study, which has fallen short. I noticed that when I wasn't reading the scriptures faithfully, that life seemed a little harder - that I was more prone to get frustrated and mean. For the first week or so, I did a prayer search on lds.org and recorded my thoughts in the blog post: Prayer: Generates Understanding. For the second week, I decided to experiment on what I learned, and wrote about my experience in the blog post: Answers to Prayers, Miracles, and Becoming a Better Person. Needless to say, I feel happier when I study and read the scriptures, and have it marked as a goal for next month - and this time I am inviting my sweetheart to join me.
Marriage: Be more playful
I asked my sweetheart if I have been more playful with him. He responded that I have certainly improved, but I am still a little too serious. As an example of something I have done to be more playful: I took pictures of our stuffed animals in their different welcome home positions. It's true, my sweetheart and I have two stuffed animals on our bed: Trevor and Stewart (referred to affectionately as Stewey). Every morning when my sweetheart makes the bed, he always does something with the stuffed animals to surprise me. Once, they were found sword fighting with toilet paper tubes. I have since started looking forward to coming home to see what Trevor and Stewey will be doing next. I then take pictures of these delightful creatures and intend on making a book: The Adventures of Trevor and Stewey.
Finances: Learn how to budget better
My sweetheart and I started attending Financial Peace University, a class put on by volunteers, but ultimately created from the Dave Ramsey curriculum. We just finished a one month budget and are tracking our spending....something neither one of us have done before. While the process of figuring this out together has not been super joyful, knowing what we are doing with our limited income has certainly made me happy.
Family/Friends: Call the people I care about when I actually THINK about them
I have been able to catch up with so many people...I am sure it is driving my sweetheart crazy. It has even been fun to shoot someone a quick email or note telling them that I am thinking about them because of something I saw. For example, my sweetheart showed me this super bizarre and insanely funny youtube video about toast. We were laughing so hard and I immediately thought of my brother Brendon as being someone who would appreciate it. I sent it to him and he laughed his butt off. The next time I talk to him I can't wait to scream "French Toast!"
Intellect: Learn More About Behavioral Disorders
As mentioned in some of my posts, I want to understand more about ADHD. I wrote more about it in my blog post: Letting People in on My Mourning. In addition to my studies about ADHD, I also started studying depression. I went online to some blogs and reviewed some articles, and found the book I wanted to read on the topic. I ended up purchasing two books on the topic including Undoing Depression: What Therapy Doesn't Teach You and Medication Can't Give You
and Falling Into the Fire: A Psychiatrist's Encounters with the Mind in Crisis. I actually wrote a little something about the last book on my company blog: Kablaucommunications.com: Minds in Crisis. I haven't started reading these books yet, but I am excited to expand my mind about something that is becoming more common.
Side note: I also read this interesting article about men and women in Japan called Hikikomori who are younger adults who refuse to leave their rooms because they are living a life of fear, contentment with not going out and moving on with their lives, and depression - which is becoming more and more prevalent in their society. The article also highlights that this may not be just a problem in Japan. It is a pretty interesting read from BBC news called Hikikomori: Why are so many Japanese men refusing to leave their rooms?
Health: Develop Healthy Eating Patterns
I wrote about this experience in an earlier blog post: Never Give Up. Needless to say, I am back to cooking and I love it! I need to ease up the sugar though.
Time: Spend more time finishing projects: spirituality booklet/album
It is complete! I had so much fun finally going through all those quotes and scriptures I have been hanging on to since I was in my youth program at church. Now I have one centralized place for all those little dew-dads, and ended up getting rid of so many pieces of paper. I don't know why I hang on to this stuff. I was so enthused by the success of the booklet that I already started my Time project for October, which includes a scanner!
Passion: Blog on your personal and company blog. Visit Washington DC monuments and take photos
I have done a pretty good job at keeping up with both blogs...and you know, it makes me super happy. I started going through the news feeds for things that peak my interest. I look for articles that back up my opinion and feelings. Not only do I feel more informed on what is going on in the world around me, but I feel like I am learning a lot about what I am interested in...something that makes me VERY happy! You can read all about my other interests at Kablaucommunications.com including: PR, Education, and the Job Search.
Here is a little peak at the second Passion goal.
Admittedly, I had unhappy moments during the month of September. In fact, looking back, I had more unhappy moments than I did the month prior. Something to keep in mind is that change is tough, particularly when it comes to changing in order to be happy. But I keep pushing through because I know in the end, all the stumbling along the way will be worth it!