In a busy life with kids running around, how do you find time to enjoy your hobbies? Pursuing my hobbies and interests has required a sacrifice of time.
One thing I get asked when I tell people of my love for Family History is: “How do you find time for Family History?” It’s true, our house seems to never sleep these days, but I seem to still find plenty of time to accomplish all that I want to each day.
How? By Prioritizing!
There are certain things in my life that have to be done first thing in the morning. If I don’t do these first, they are quickly lost in the shuffle of maintaining everything else in life.
My top priorities each morning are:
All these things MUST be done before breakfast to ensure the day runs smoothly.
My Secret Weapon: Nap time!
Nap time is a non-negotiable part of our lives. In the summer time, it is considered quiet time for the big kids, but I MUST have this time to take a break and hopefully gain my second wind to finish off the day strong. I could easily use (waste) this time on so many things, but again, I plan and prioritize this time to be the most effective.
Nap time is when I get most of my Family History done. I have set boundaries for myself that I am not on my computer, phone, or tv when the kids are awake, so nap time is when the bulk of my screen time happens. If I am in the middle of an extremely exciting Family History discovery, I will turn the computer off at 3 and come back to it after the kids are in bed for the night.
A Sacrifice of Time
To do Family History in many cases does require a sacrifice of time. President Russell M. Nelson said: “That means sacrificing time we normally spend on other activities. We need to be spending more time in the temple and in doing family history research which includes indexing.”
That’s how I started doing Family History work. I would sit down at the computer to work on various projects, and before I would get sucked into social media, I would index a few batches. Setting large goals and working to achieve them helped keep me on track and focused to accomplish the goal. I am also a fairly competitive person and was always trying to be one of the top indexers in my area…Whatever motivates you!
This Sacrifice Comes with A Blessing
I love that no sacrifice we make is in vain. There are plenty of other things that I could be doing with this 2 hour block of time. I could catch up on a plethora of shows, search to the end of the internet, shop online, etc. BUT, I have found that when I spend my time in ways that serve others, the outcome is so much better than if I were to focus on myself.
Sister Wendy Nelson promised that “However fabulous your life is right now or however discouraging and heartbreaking it may be, your involvement in family history and temple work will make it better…When we show the Lord we are serious about helping our ancestors, the heavens will open, and we will receive all that we need.”
I have totally found that to be true. I have never left a nap time that I spent completely absorbed in family history feeling like I didn’t have enough time to accomplish the tasks of the day. Instead, I leave that quiet time feeling renewed and refreshed. (Except those times I mentioned where I am finding family after family to add to my family tree, and I want to keep researching but the kids are waking up!)
President Nelson left us with a challenge: “I would like to extend a challenge to each one of us: I invite you prayerfully to consider what kind of sacrifice. Preferably a sacrifice of time you can make to do more family history and temple work this year.”
Look at your day. Find out when you can block out some time to do family history each month, week, or day. Here are some great ideas of ways to start doing your family history:
What are you willing to sacrifice to learn more about Family History?