I have been doing the One Little Word thing for years now. Some years with  more success than others. I’ve been through Imperturbable, Remember, Breathe, Selfless, Lift, Today and His

This year I hadn’t really given it much thought, until a good friend gave a talk in church based on a suggestion for new year’s resolutions by Thomas S. Monson. He gave the talk in Norwegian, and had translated them, so I made a note of the 4 words: Lytte, Lære, Arbeide og Elske – and translated them back to English.  Listen, Learn, Work and Love. And the more I thought about it, the more I liked them. So I decided they would be my words for 2016.

Then I found out that the original was of course a list of words that all started with the same letter:  Listen, Learn, LABOR and Love, taken from a BYU Devotional address given in 1973, called Four words to guide you. Duh…!


four words


So much easier to remember. 😀

So, in brief:

I will LISTEN more than I speak. Listen and silent are spelled with the same letters. No coincidence. I have two ears, and one mouth. No coincidence there either. Also, I will be more selective in what I listen to, and quicker to turn off or change from music or podcasts or other things that do not uplift and inspire.

I will LEARN this year. I am teaching the Gospel Doctrine class this year, and it is forcing me to study more in depth than I normally would. I can’t just read superficially, I really have to ponder and dig and take notes  – and I know that I will be the one learning most – not the class. I also want to learn a few other things. Like more code. And knitting more complicated things than just squares. And maybe even how to bake bread. (It’s about time..!)

I will LABOR. Nothing new there. But I can tend to be a little lazy, and I sometimes need to be reminded that anything worth having costs something. I’m not afraid of hard work, I usually just have to get started, and I find it fairly enjoyable – whether it’s at work, at home, in the garden or in church. I just have to keep it up, I guess. ‘What E’er Thou art, act well thy part’.

I will LOVE. This one is hard for me. I’m not very loving, or lovable by nature. And love is a verb, not a feeling.(I tend to get the two mixed up…) So the labor part and the love part are somewhat interconnected. I quite often think everybody would be better off, (myself included) – if I could just live alone in a little cabin with a cat and a large library. But then loving would be kind of difficult, right? Loving means showing gratitude by serving. It also means being vulnerable and selfless and patient and forgiving and caring. Hard. Which is why one of my ponderize scriptures has been Moroni 7:48. I can’t do it on my own. I need help.

Happy New Year!