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Improving the World through Self-Improvement

Updated on December 13, 2011
Painted in PhotoShop by the author
Painted in PhotoShop by the author

There's a reason why you are here on this earth: You have something to contribute to society, or to someone's well-being. As Curly on City Slickers would say, all you have to do is to find "that one thing" - the one secret that is the key to that special you. As you dedicate yourself to finding the noble mission that best fulfills your special dreams, you will eventually find it, and as you develop and use it, you will feel great satisfaction and peace in life.

You may claim that you don't have any gifts, talents, or abilities, or the means to carry off your dreams; you've tried it all. Well, did you persist?

When I first attempted to see a Magic Eye image, I couldn't do it. Furthermore, the crossing of my eyes, or the act of trying to diverge them, made me nauseous. But I continued to practice during the next few days, until it became second nature, and until I no longer felt queasy.

If you take a ride in a fighter jet, and undergo a few G's while the pilot banks the aircraft, you'll most likely black out, unless you've undergone extensive conditioning.

Everyone who is good at anything usually didn't get there by default. It takes dedication, repetitive exercises, and practice.

Heber J. Grant, seventh president of the LDS church, is an example of someone who knew how to train himself in areas that originally were foreign to him. When he was a young boy, his friends made fun of him for his lack of baseball skills. So he shined enough shoes to buy a baseball, and practiced throwing it until his arm ached. Ultimately, he helped his team to win an interstate championship.

His next goal in life was to work as an accountant at a bank. One requirement was to have good penmanship. But his friends reported that his writing looked like chicken scratches. He practiced penmanship until he had the best job, and accolades from the experts.

Heber loved to sing, but couldn't carry a tune. His teacher, after trying hard to teach him to sing, gave up and said it was okay for him to sing, but added, "I would like to be at least forty miles away while you are doing it."

President Grant wrote: "Upon my recent trip to Arizona, I asked Elders Rudger Clawson and J. Golden Kimball if they had any objections to my singing one hundred hymns that day. They took it as a joke and assured me that they would be delighted. We were on the way from Holbrook to St. Johns, a distance of about sixty miles. After I had sung about forty tunes, they assured me that if I sang the remaining sixty they would be sure to have nervous prostration. I paid no attention whatever to their appeal, but held them to their bargain and sang the full one hundred. One hundred and fifteen songs in one day, and four hundred in four days, is the largest amount of practicing I ever did.

“Today [1900] my musical deafness is disappearing, and by sitting down to a piano and playing the lead notes, I can learn a song in less than one-tenth the time required when I first commenced to practice" (see

Learning a talent or discovering your special abilities may take some time, but in the end, it will be worth it. The raised eyebrows you get from others will raise your self-esteem, and when you share your time or services with - or for - others, the admiration in their eyes will give you peace and make your day.

I began by making pencil sketches when I was around five years old. The sketches weren’t too good, but the encouragement from others kept me going. Then, my brother John gave me the idea to write stories in comic book form. Sometimes I paid more attention to the story than I did the drawings, but I slowly gained more experience both in story-telling, and in drawing. (You can see what my earliest drawings looked like here:)

There is a comparison of what my artwork looked like then, and what I’ve done most recently (also, most of the art for these hubs are done by me on my computer).

When I tried to answer math questions in school, all I could do was stutter. But with practice, I learned to do math easily in my head (see next link).

My brother taught me how to play a tune on the piano when I was young. Since then, I’ve had piano lessons, took theory classes, and have written music that was used in church meetings and a local road show production (follow this link).

One of the personal missions I found in life was using my guitar to sing to old folks in their rest homes, and to retarded people. This is one of the things that brought me the most joy and satisfaction. Another mission is to write in my YahooGroups, answering questions of a spiritual, Christian, or LDS nature.

The link below can help you with self-improvement. There are many places on the internet that can help you find your gifts and your life’s noble work. I hope you find it soon and help to make the world a better place.


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    • AnnaCia profile image

      AnnaCia 5 years ago

      This is very nice. I enjoyed the reading. Thank you.

    • sunkentreasure profile image



      Look for the beauty

      in everything you see.

      Walk in peace

      showing kindness


      The secrets of success

      are motivation

      and dedication

      Happiness is

      what you make happen

      for yourself.

      Caring is

      going to the ends of the world

      for a stranger.

      Be useful with your life.

      Whatever you are doing

      put your whole

      being into it 100%

      Loving is

      pleasing your loved one everyday

      in a 1000 different ways.

      Control your mind

      you are its master

      Be in control.

      Live your life

      without hurting or


      Believe in yourself.

      Have respect for yourself.

      Walk through life

      always with a song.

      © Bernard Levine

    • SamboRambo profile image

      Samuel E. Richardson 6 years ago from Salt Lake City, Utah

      Yes, Coach, I would be honored to be linked to your hub.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      A beautiful message and a great read! I just wrote a hub entitled "Reaching your true potential" and would like to link this hub. Please let me know if I have your permission. I enjoyed the inspirational story of Heber J. Grant. And being a vocal/piano teacher also loved your "100 hymns" story.

      Blessings to you and yours. I look forward to reading more by you. Voted UP!