7 Habits to Help You Become a Better Mormon

Habits. We all have them. Some of them endear us to others, and some drive us crazy, but all of them somehow work their way into our subconscious and make us who we are. Latter-day Saint Stephen R. Covey understood the power of creating good habits and wrote a book about some of the best habits we can cultivate. This list of habits to help Latter-day Saints become closer to the Savior is based off of that model.

All highlight quotes from Stephen R. Covey’s website.

1. The habit of study and preparation.

I know, I know. Everyone knows this one. It’s one of those “little things” we always hear about, but we can’t let our testimony ride on our parents’ testimonies. We need to ask questions. We need to have habits of consistent study and practice being in tune with the Spirit so we can answer questions from others and faithfully deal with trials. Consider this story, shared by Sheri Dew in her newest book, Worth the Wrestle.

“Several years ago, a marvelous young woman who had just graduated with honors from BYU called me, distraught. Through sobs she blurted, ‘Sister Dew, I’m not sure I believe the Church is true, and I’m scared. What if my family isn’t going to be together forever? What if what I’ve been taught my whole life isn’t true?’

“I listened to her attempt to explain her distress and finally asked, ‘Do you want to have a testimony?’

“‘Yes,’ she said.

“‘Are you willing to work for it?’

“Again she answered, ‘Yes.’

“And was she ever! . . . She took me at my word and brought one thorny question after another. She asked question after question that I’d never considered—good, intelligent, probing questions. During one of our study sessions together, as she threw a steady stream of questions at me, I asked her if she was asking questions against a backdrop of faith or one of doubt. ‘In other words, are you saying, “Here’s something I don’t understand, so the gospel must not be true,” or are you willing to say, “Here’s something I don’t understand, but I wonder what the Lord or His prophets will teach us about this?” Are your questions asked with the assumption that there are answers? Are you willing to trust the Lord and give Him the benefit of the doubt?’ . . . 

“Her testimony slowly began to grow, our study sessions tapered off, and a couple of years passed. One Sunday evening she called to say: ‘I want you to be one of the first to know that I am holding in my hand a temple recommend. Will you come when I receive my endowment?’ She added her thanks for the time we’d spent together and then said, ‘Do you know what you said that helped me the most? You told me to bring every question I had because questions are good. That simple statement allowed me to see myself as a seeker rather than as a doubter.’”

Successful Latter-day Saints, like this sister, take charge of their own testimonies and work hard to build them, influencing those around them for the better.

Seven Habits highlight: "Instead of reacting to or worrying about conditions over which they have little or no control, proactive people focus their time and energy on things they can control. The problems, challenges, and opportunities we face fall into two areas—Circle of Concern and Circle of Influence."

► You'll also like: Sheri Dew: Why Wrestling With Our Questions Is a Good Thing

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