Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Better Than Our Best

(Michael Phelps image courtesy google search... source not found to accredit to)

A couple weeks ago I was called to be 2nd counselor in our Primary. I had the privilege of doing a couple fun months as Relief Society Meeting Coordinator (whew... mouthful) where we sang karaoke at a rest home, did a taste of world cuisine progressive activity (instead of dinner, tasters... bless you Costco) and I was hoping to get a star gazing/ astronomy class in there- but I was then called to teach the Valiant 8 and 9 year olds. Talk about exceptional children, even though we only had 2 months together!! (We're having a Old Testament party that I'll post details on later.)

Babble some more Sofia. Long winded, anyone.. anyone?

Point: I am the first to admit I have so much to learn. I have to do so much better than my best.

I was reading and came across a couple quotes I wanted to share in regards to learning and life:

"Thomas Edison was a lifelong learner. He is reported to have said, "I have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeed in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."

"We spend our lives doing better than our best! Our best today is not our best tomorrow. Our best today is never our best tomorrow, for what we learn and do today changes our capacity. Our progress depends upon doing better today, even though yeterday's "better" seemed all that was possible at that time." (quoted from Return by Elder Robert D. Hales)

He then goes on (of course more eloquently) to talk about Michael Phelps and how he set records one year and then broke them the next. How his records shattered those who had swam multiple years before him. We get to this point where we do our best and then ask, what now?

"As we stand atop any peak, let us enjoy the moment of satisfaction in the present. Look at the remarkable view and the progress we have made. Then turn around to see what new peaks are now in sight and set a course to climb higher in the future. When we do this, we see clearly how the achievement of one goal paves the way to higher achievement in the future. Looking back and contemplating the sacrifice and hard work that were required to achieve past goals, we gain confidence and determination that we can do more and climb even higher. The real meaning of lifelong learning takes shape in the cycle of past, present, and future-with each old step becoming a foundation for the new." (again quoting from Return by Elder Robert D.Hales)

I'm excited to being going on my 8th year in primary. I know that I have sooooooo many things to do better and I'm just grateful that through Christ, anything is possible if I put my trust in Him. One thing I'm really going to be better at is consistently fellowshipping inactive primary children and eating less chocolate.

I gobbled up Return and feasted upon a true buffet of doctrine and soul satisfying goodness! Now it's time to cash in my points at Deseret Book and share the love with those I love most!!! YOU!!! (Well, first Heavenly Father and Jesus, then my family and then you... please don't be disgruntled, I don't downplay my love for you but feel I should clarify)


Post a comment with something you plan to do in your life to be better than your best and a way to contact you. I'll choose a winner November 1 through one of those random number generator thingies.

26 comments :

Sofia's Primary Ideas said...

I'll be the first to post, because really... when have you ever seen number 1 chosen to be a winner?

Tara L. said...

I love your blog. Thanks for sharing those quotes. I needed them today. I am the Primary Chorister in my ward and each week I try to make it better than the week before. This week I am really going to try to help the kids learn to lead music, and we are going to work on reverence. tspendlove@hotmail.com

Brittney said...

Like Tara, I love your blog and really appreciated the quotes in this post. I think some of the best experiences are when I evaluate my life and find the places that need improvement or just a little dusting! In primary there is so much to do, so much energy involved! I have a crazy busy life, as we all do, and my constant goal is to find the right balance between school, work, family, calling, and...ME! Thanks for all of your great ideas, and for motivating us all to do a little better :)

-Brittney
afprimarysingingtime.blogspot.com

Hifam said...

I love your blog. You have such amazing ideas. Awhile ago we did the Reader's Theater that you created. The kids loved it. One 11 year old boy read his part and then continued reading out loud "hold up picture". The kids all got a kick out of that and everyone had a great time.
I really like your thoughts and quotes from this book. We all have different strengths and talents. I can improve by looking at some of the things I find difficult in my calling and making a plan to get them done. Thanks!
hickenfam at hotmail dot com

the W* family said...

I LOVE your blog! Thanks so much for your wonderful ideas! I especially loved this post... perfect motivation to be better than my best!

I want to be better than my best at listening to the Spirit when I am preparing sharing time. I want to be better than my best at showing the children love and patience, and caring for each individual child in Primary.

Henckel House said...

I want to be better than my best when it comes to eliminating anger from my life. I think of this every time my voice starts to rise and become shrill. So much work to do on that one.
Your blog is a fantastic resource and just so much fun to read
henckelhouse[at]yahoo[dot]com

melissa said...

I love the ideas you come up with. I will have to use them for my FHE .
One thing I want to do better is motivate my 2 boys in learning all they can when they are at home at school and at church. Learning happens everyday in more ways then they know

mechan26@yahoo.com

Cyndi said...

Thank you so much for all of your ideas! I'm new to my calling and have really found your blog helpful. Since accepting my calling I have been trying to be "better than my best" at recognizing and responding to the Holy Ghost. Cyndilou_llama@yahoo.com

Eileen said...

Thank you for your ideas for primary! I want to be better at accentuating the positive things my kids do. matthfam at gmail dot com

Sarah said...

I am a fairly new Primary President in our ward and I often feel inadequate. I enjoyed this post (as I do your blog very often!) and ironically, I have recently decided I need to be better in order to receive more of the blessings Heavenly Father has in store for me. And I know that being a "better than my best" me includes eliminating things that don't invite the spirit...even if doing so seems hard. Guilty pleasure: Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice, Modern Family and...(my list goes on). But thinking over the last few days, I realize that my life isn't going to end by not knowing the comings and goings of McDreamy :) And the blessings that will come by not allowing those kinds of negative media in my home will be worth any bit of hard it might be. And more of the spirit in my home leads to happier children and a more inviting space for the Holy Ghost to dwell. Seems pretty worldly actually writing this, but it's what I am going to do to be a better me. thanks for your beautiful blog...

Sarah said...

oops...forgot to leave my email

sjrvan@gmail.com

Camille English said...

I need to keep president Monson's General Relief Society talk in my heart and remember to stop judging. And to stop listening to gossip.

Camille English said...

camilleenglish@gmail.com

sorry i forgot.

Mary said...

Your blog has been a tremendous help to me when I find I need help filling in gaps as I plan for Sharing Time.

My latest project for becoming better is planning more home-cooked meals ahead of time- (I'm not Martha Stewart!)

marymem@hotmail.com

snbjork said...

Your blog posts always cheer me up! One of many things I plan to work extra hard on right now is to speak more lovingly to my children when I really don't feel like it. Like those times that they are fussing and pouting about everything, not obeying, etc. During those times I usually want to be grumpy and frustrated and my children can definitely tell by my tone of voice. I don't want them to always know that I am frustrated (because it usually makes their mood worse). So, I will work on trying to be more cheerful and to speak kind words even when I don't feel like it! =)

snbjork@gmail.com

Kayrena said...

I love your ideas and have linked some of them to my own singing time blog so I hope that is okay. Thank you for all your amazing ideas and creative effort.

Shane and Kim said...

My computer battery died when I was leaving a comment and it deleted it. I wasn't trying to leave more then one comment. So I have been a follower of your blog for 2 years now. I have used your ideas for FHE,primary, or just to teach my children a concept. Recently you talked about how children are moroni's and we need to listen to the little moroni's. I have totally changed how I look at my children. So now I am working on being a better mother. My children are smart so thanks for helping me slow down and really listen.

theamazingjohnsons said...

I have really been wanting to get up earlier so that I can take care of myself by exercising and reading the scriptures. I think by doing that I will be better able to take care of my family and everyone will be happier.

Thank you so much for all you do! I appreciate your blog so much.

Heather said...

I want to be better at putting first things first. Doing the most important things first even if they aren't the most urgent. heather@hosac.com

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your inspiring comments, month after month! I really appreciate your fresh view of teaching children. As for me, I plan to get off sugar! God has given me a body, and I am not taking care of it if I am always shoving sugar inside. I am also changing my ways so that my kids won't have the same struggle! kmkaspen@hotmail.com

The Children Sing said...

Sofia, I always feel better after I visit your blog! I just love the way you put things in perspective. Because the phrase "Making the Best Better" is the motto for 4-H, and because I've been a leader in 4-H for 20 years, I've pondered this phrase a lot! I've had to answer many a child who has challenged that phrase by saying, "But if something is your best, how do you make it better?" I think the answer rests in our attitude toward what is our best. When President Hinckley said "just do your best," I'm sure he didn't mean to simply rest on your laurels, even if you are pretty good at something. There is always something MORE one can do, even if you are at the top of the game. (See, I can be long winded too!) Anyway...I need to be better than my best at managing frustration. I continue to work on that. Thanks for all your encouragement.

Melissa (Wallick) Larson said...

Your blog has been very entertaining and inspiring to read. I just got put in as Primary President of our ward a week ago while my husband got put in as Scout Master and 2nd counselor of the young men organinzation. Both these callings as well as raising our five children and working and continuing to work on staying in love with each other, needless to say have made me feel a little overwhelmed with what we have both been asked to do.

I want to work on having more faith. I believe we would never have been asked to do all this if it was not in our capablities. I am excited to receive all the blessings that will come our way by serving others and giving 100% to our callings. Wish us luck!

melissalarson20@yahoo.com

Dormommy said...

I am still striving to learn the names of all the children I am called to love. I am trying to be better than my best by getting to know them as individuals, not just as classes, or as "the loud one", the "smart one." I am getting better. Thank you for your blog, it is an inspiration.

Kacey said...

Am I too late to post? I LOVE your blog and I LOVE to read. I am beginning my third year as a Primary president and I love it (although I think Primary chorister is the best calling in the whole church)
kaceyhamilton@msn.com

carol said...

I hope I am not too late. I am new in my ward and in the primary presidency. I am going to try to learn all the kids names and then call them by name every time I see them.
carolcramerdesign@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your post!! I must admit as one who has recently been called into the primary presidency, your blog has given me the reassurance that I needed this week!!! Your words are heaven sent ♥♥♥!!!
Thank you, thank you, thank you...and may you continue to be an instrument in the Lord's hands!!!

♥ CC's 1st Counsellor.