September 3, 2011 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm #599120Wondering…Member
What are you doing about Elul? Are we meant to trying to better generally, or taking on one specific thing to improve on? Or doing extra things just for Elul?? Please share….. Thanks!September 4, 2011 1:17 am at 1:17 am #805463WIYMember
I think the best thing is to work on something that we personally have a problem with be it loshon hora haves yisroel not learning enough Torah….whatever it may be and learn a safer about that topic daily and try to implement what we learn into our lives to become changed and better people.September 4, 2011 1:27 am at 1:27 am #805464YW BandMember
Well one thing is that nobody is perfect. We have to look into ourselves & see what we need to work on. The wrong thing to do is make huge kabalos which we know we cant fulfill. Small kabalos like getting up on time in the morning (huge for me lol), more kavanah in davening, smiling when people greet you (instead of texting) etc. The list is long, but a step-by-step process is the best approach. May Hashem grant us with a year of simcha, nachas, refuahos, yeshuaos & nechamos! Kesiva V’chasima Tova to all!September 4, 2011 8:02 am at 8:02 am #805465HummingbirdParticipant
Here is a copy of an E-mail on this topic which I received recently from someone I know that I’d like to share w/ you:
Focusing on Doing Good During Elul
What things should you do during Elul to make this month a productive and accomplishing month, so that you can look back at the end of the month and say, “Wow! I really changed!”?
The thing to focus on now is asay tov – doing good things before you focus on the sur may’ra – refraining from doing bad. This means that you should concentrate on doing all the good things you are doing each day and just add a little something to make it even better.
(From: Leket Reshimos on Elul – R’ Nosson Meir Vachtfogel)
Here are some suggestions:
When it comes to davening, you can try to daven with a little bit more Kavannah than usual. Look into your siddur. Say the words a drop slower than usual. Say them loud enough so that you can hear each word that you say. Sing a song that will inspire you before you start the next part.
If you are walking down the street or in the grocery store, look out for opportunities to help other people. Hold the door open for others on your way in and out. Offer to help someone find a specific item. Smile at the woman ringing up your purchases. Help someone carry their bags to the car. Put your shopping cart back where it belongs. Do these things with a smile.
Help your mother out cheerfully. Ask her what she needs before she asks you. Or better yet, do it without being asked. Be extra kind to your siblings. Speak softly even when they are getting you annoyed.
Walk into work every day for the next week (or more, if that’s possible) with a smile. Say good morning with a happy tone of voice and facial expression to your coworkers. Try to be extra pleasant when talking on the phone to clients and take the extra moment to think about them and what you can do to help them in the best way possible.
Before you eat a meal, be it breakfast, lunch or supper, look at the food you are about to eat and thank Hashem in your heart for giving you so much bounty-so many choices of foods, so many colors and tastes. Then, after you thought about it for a minute, go ahead and make the proper bracha.
Putting those extra seconds of thought into it just before you eat your meal can help you have real kavannah when you make a bracha.
On your way out of the bathroom, think for a minute about how lucky you are to be able to go by yourself, without the help of anyone, without needing machines hooked up to your body. The fact that your body works so well on it’s own is a real, true miracle! So take those extra 20 seconds to say the words of asher yatzar slowly and carefully!!
Before you leave your house in the morning, look in the mirror and ask yourself do I look good? What does good mean? YOU and only you can define that word.
Are you neat and put together? Are you walking outside and making a kiddush Hashem with the way you dress, the way you walk and the way you talk?
Throughout your day, look out for ways to do little things – little things that will make a big difference in the lives of other people and in your own life. Now that we are in Elul, it is time for you to focus on being proactive, on doing as many positive mitzvos as possible so that you can tip the scales in your favor. Hashem is here! He is close to us! He wants to give us all the brachos and good things!
It’s up to you to make it happen. By concentrating on how you can improve the things you are doing one little notch, one level higher, you can make this year a good one.
Hatzlacha Rabba to one & all!!!!!!September 4, 2011 8:15 am at 8:15 am #805466smilenowMember
wow thank you for sharing that. I love how it gave all those examples, sometimes you know there are things you need to work on but your mind is just blank—
Also, i just heard a shuir today that spoke about a similar idea yet stressed the point that during elul we should focus on both sur meirah and asei tov- the speaker said we should take on something little each day- one sur meirah and one asei tov. i think its a good idea too…September 4, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am #805467welldressed007Participant
H-shem is asking us to wake up. So many calls to this effect. Start your cheshbon hanefesh early this year. The rest will be easy. Take nothing for granted and do something oh so simple and beautiful. Greet people every day without them greeting you first. We need to show resepect after all people are created be’tzelem Elokim are we not? The second Bais Hamikdash was destroyed because of sinas chinam. So why do we perpetuate it?
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