the purge: a cleansing and renewing of my way of thought.

A week ago I made the decision to go speak to my bishop concerning the confusion and frustration that I had been feeling for the past week or so. I explained to him that I had felt the need to  come up here to Provo, for some reason unknown to myself, but now I was doubting my decision to move away for the summer. I had many unrealistic expectations that weren't met, so I was frustrated with my situation to say the least. With all this unnecessary pressure building up we decided that I needed to axe a few things in my life.

First on my "purge" list was social media. I would like to freely admit that I spend WAY too much time on my phone, bouncing between Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr, there were so many things I could be doing with that wasted time. So with the determination to relieve myself of inessential burdens, I deleted all three apps from my phone. Okay, so I know I probably should have completely deactivated my accounts, but I wanted to see if I could manage to live without them for just a week, then I would see where to go from there.

The second thing that I was set on removing from my life was negativity, in all it's forms. I wanted to get rid of negative thoughts, actions, but mostly people. Without notice I had slowly started to surround myself with people who were having a very negative impact on my life and ultimately my self worth. So with hesitation and a heavy heart I let the axe fall and cut the bands that kept me to tied to them. To put it lightly, it was the hardest thing I have ever done. But I knew that to help MYSELF I needed to focus more love and attention on myself.

The third thing on my list wasn't something that I was planning on getting rid of, quite the opposite, I realized I needed to incorporate more gratitude into way of life. Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, said in the April 2014 General Conference, 
"This is not a gratitude of the lips but of the soul. It is a gratitude that heals the heart and expands the mind.
Being grateful in our circumstances is an act of faith in God. It requires that we trust God and hope for things we may not see but which are true. By being grateful, we follow the example of our beloved Savior, who said, “Not my will, but thine, be done.”
True gratitude is an expression of hope and testimony. It comes from acknowledging that we do not always understand the trials of life but trusting that one day we will."
Boom. Suddenly my petty problems seemed incredibly insignificant compared to the whole scheme of things. Sure my life felt like it sucked, but it certainly didn't even brush close to it. So with a renewed sense of determination I created yet another list. This one was in a scrappy old composition notebook, and on the front page it's titled "Hailey's 2014 Thankfuls and Happys". It's a simple bullet pointed list of everything that I adore about my life and all of the little things that make me incredibly and irreversibly happy. As of right now sunshine and dandelions are crowning in at the top of the page.
With all of that said (well typed...) I have come to the conclusion that I need to focus on bettering myself and improving my attitude of gratitude, and to stop focusing on all of my so called "shortcomings", because in all actuality I'm pretty dang blessed.

~hk

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