There are so many things that I learned during my mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that I have let slide since I returned home 6 years ago. It makes me sad to have regressed, but I know I have progressed in so many different ways since then that I try not to beat myself up about letting a few things go.
One thing that has been on my mind a lot, in part because of this blog, is the spiritual concept of accountability. A few wise words from Preach My Gospel:
“The principle of accountability is fundamental in God’s eternal plan. We will all stand before the Lord at the last judgment and give an accounting for what we have done with the opportunities He has given us (see Alma 5:15-19; D&C 137:9).” (p. 150)
When I am wasting time on the computer to avoid doing household chores, it usually doesn’t occur to me that I am not being accountable to the Lord, but the whole root of accountability is that at some point I will have to account for my time and gifts and talents and opportunities to the Lord, and I would like to be able to say that I used and developed all of those things for the benefit of myself, my family, and those around me. So I have started setting daily goals for my household projects on my house blog, posting my long-term goals in a visible place so that I remember them, and talking about my goals with my husband and others so that they can support and encourage me in them. Just last night my husband said that he was stealing my mouse until I got everything else done that I wanted to get done before bed. And he did it in a sincere, loving, and helpful way, and it really did help me to meet my goal.
There are myriad books and websites about how to set and achieve goals, but here is a little more doctrinal advice from Preach My Gospel:
“Accountability does not come only at the end of your mission [your life, etc.]. It is a principle that influences how you begin, how you think and feel about the responsibility the Lord has given you, how you approach your work, and how well you endure. The attitude you have toward your [current] experience is a reflection of your love toward your Heavenly Father and His Son…” (p. 151)
Here’s to being accountable and making life better!