108. The Power of Awareness

The power of awareness is real. In this episode, we explore the concept of awareness and its impact on personal growth and change.

As you know, our Heavenly Parents created us with two brains – one that is constantly seeking problems and protecting us from pain, and another that can reason, plan, and imagine the future. Using our higher brain, we can observe and bring awareness to our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.

At times, we can feel consumed by intense thoughts, feelings, and experiences…almost like we’re trapped in a tornado. In this episode, I teach you how to step outside the tornado and observe your inner world from a higher, metacognitive perspective. That’s the way we can gain clarity, understanding, and the ability to make intentional changes in our lives.

Just becoming aware of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors can automatically bring about a shift in our way of thinking, feeling, and showing up in the world. Massive change that you are looking for starts by becoming aware. Becoming that type of missionary, that kind of mom, that kind of student, is possible.

Tune in to this podcast to explore the ways in which awareness can help us understand ourselves better and make positive changes in our lives.

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0:00 Hey everybody, it’s Jennie Dildine, the LDS mission coach and you are listening to the LDS mission Podcast, episode number 108. The Power of Awareness. I’m Jennie, the LDS mission coach. And whether you’re preparing to serve a mission, currently serving a returned missionary or a missionary mama like me, I created this podcast just for you. Are you searching for epic confidence? Ready to love yourself and to learn the how of doing hard things? Then let’s go. I will help you step powerfully into your potential and never question your purpose. Again, it’s time to embrace yourself, embrace your mission, embrace your life, and embrace what’s next. Hey, everybody, welcome to the podcast. Thanks for being here. I love the time that I get to hang out with you each week. And talk about all of these concepts and tools to help you have more mental and emotional health as well as some awareness, mental and emotional awareness, which is what we’re going to be talking about today. And how much power it has just to become aware. So that is why it’s so important that we just kind of learn about this stuff. And I would love it, if you could just on the podcast for this podcast, just share it with one person. So if you’re listening, and you’re a missionary, just share it with one companion. Or if you’re listening, and you’re a missionary Mom, just share it with one of your friends. If you’re preparing to go on your mission, and you just are like, Oh my gosh, I feel like these tools have helped me so much. Just share it with another one of your preparing missionary friends. Okay, or if you’re an RM, just share with one of your roommates or whatever. Because I really believe that if we can get more tools out mental and emotional tools, that we can change the entire mission experience, that we can actually eliminate all of the suffering that’s happening. And so that would be a huge favor. And I would be so grateful if you could just tell one person about this podcast, and that’s how the word is going to spread. I was actually working with a client who returned earlier than he was expecting this was our second session. And he said to me, he’s like, Oh, my gosh, I wish I would have known this stuff before I left. And I said, I know. Please tell everyone you know, and he said, Yeah, that’s so true. I’ve got a couple companions are not companions, but but some friends that are out struggling on the mission right now. And I’m like, Why don’t they have the podcast? Do noise, send it to them via Google Drive, like, they just need to be made aware. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today is just how this awareness again can create so much power. But I would be so grateful. If you would join in with me on this journey to create more missionaries that have these tools, more RMS, that don’t have to judge themselves and hate themselves when they come home and think they’re doing it all wrong. I just would love to get more of these tools out. So thank you so much as always, for sharing and for spreading the word about this, I think it’s super important work that we’re doing here, which I think it’s been a couple of podcasts since I’ve mentioned this. And so I want to mention it again here, which is we have some really cool big stuff happening this fall that I can’t wait to share with you, particularly for preparing missionaries, but we’re going to uplevel everything that we’re doing in my business so that we can be equipped to help more people, more missionaries, people who are going through this LDS mission experience and I cannot wait to share that with you. One of the aspects of that is that we are going to be hiring our M returned missionary mentors. And some people were a little confused about that, like, are they mentors for RMS or are they RM mentors? And the idea is is that these return to missionary mentors would help preparing missionaries and in some cases returned missionaries. Yeah, I just think it’s gonna be awesome. And we’re all gonna rise together. We’re gonna rise together and I can’t wait. It’s gonna be awesome. So if you’re interested in being an RM mentor, Please reach out Jennie at Jennie dildine.com, or find me on Instagram and send me a message and we can get you all of the information. So you get on that interest list when we’re ready to hire. All right, now back to this power of awareness. This is, one thing that is super important to understand is awareness is so powerful, that it can create massive change, just by being aware. So we’re going to talk about what awareness means and why it can create such change. But before we do that, let’s talk about that we have this higher brain and this lower brain. And when our Heavenly Parents created us, they gave us two brains, right? There’s this brain that’s always looking for problems always comparing, always trying out trying to protect us from pain, conserve energy. And that part of our brain is actually very important to the plan of salvation, like we couldn’t grow a progress if we didn’t have that part of our brain. But we also have this higher brain that can reason plan, it can also this is kind of where our imagination is where we can think about the future and all of that good stuff. And so the way I like to think about awareness is we use one part of our brain to observe a different part of our brain, or a different part of our experience. And we’re gonna use a higher kind of people call it like a meta, sort of part of our brain to bring awareness to what’s going on. Now, if this sounds a little bit like cuckoo, or weird, let me give you an analogy. So sometimes I’ll get on with my clients. And I can tell they’re in the middle of a tornado. So picture kind of like that Tasmanian devil from the old cartoons that we used to watch when I was a kid. Like, there was the Road Runner, and there’s Bugs Bunny, and the Tasmanian devil, okay, and he would just like spin. And so what I picture is some of my clients, they’re in the middle of their tornado. And they have all of these feelings, all of these thoughts, all of these experiences, all of these things that they’re doing that they just can’t see out of, because the tornado is so thick, and it’s spinning. And it’s sort of like they reach their hands out for help. But they can’t really access the help, because they’re in the middle of it. So it’s actually one of my jobs that I feel like as a coach, that I helped my client come out of the tornado, so that they can see it for what it is. So there’s a difference between being on the inside of the tornado, and not being able to see your way out of it, versus pulling yourself out of the tornado, and observing the tornado from the outside. Now sometimes that tornado is not just your circumstances, sometimes that tornado is you. But we’re going to observe you with your brain. We’re gonna observe you being you. It’s called metacognition. It’s the ability that we have as humans on this planet to think about our thinking, to observe our emotions, and to observe our behaviors and not just be in the middle of them. Okay, so let’s talk about the different ways that we can bring awareness. Well, first, let’s talk about this, like, why does it even matter that we create awareness and why does it make change? I’m not sure exactly why, but for some reason, just getting outta sight of that tornado automatically brings change. So let’s think about this. This is an analogy. I just thought it was like, if we were inside the house, and we were observing what the weather did. That would automatically change the way that we’re thinking feeling. And the way that we’re planning to show up, maybe we were gonna go on a picnic, or maybe we were going to swim, or maybe we were going to go tracting or maybe we were going to

9:58 I don’t know, maybe we were Gonna go to the July 24 parade or I don’t remember what the days of 47 What did they call that now? Anyway, maybe we had a plan. But when we’re observing, it’s not like we physically even in our minds have to say, Okay, it’s raining, I noticed that it’s raining. And so I am going to change the way I’m thinking and feeling and behaving. It’s just the awareness of the surroundings of what’s going on, that automatically shifts, our way of being that awareness alone has so much power. So here’s another example of this is like if we were in a new city that we’d never been in before, and we were walking down streets and talking to people, maybe we’re a missionary, maybe we’re just an RM, and we’re hanging out with friends in a different city that we’ve never visited before. And we’re showing up in a certain way, we’re having certain thoughts like this is really awesome. And the way that we’re feeling, you know, is really good. And that’s driving a certain set of actions, then all of a sudden, we become aware that maybe this certain city we were in or this certain street that we were on, had some sort of historical, there was an event occurred that occurred there, and had some sort of historical ramifications. Like, I don’t know, maybe a civil rights movement, or maybe when I think of is like the Boston Massacre, I went to see that site a couple of years ago, all of a sudden, like, if I had just been walking down that street, I would be having one experience, but all of a sudden, creating a different awareness, becoming aware of what is happening in the surroundings, and my experience and the experiences that had occurred there changes my way of being of thinking of feeling and showing up without me having to purposely decide that. So that is why just awareness alone can create massive change. Okay. So let’s talk about a few of the ways that this happens is we can create awareness, like I said, around what we’re thinking. And again, we do this with our higher brain. And a sentence that you might say to yourself is, oh, I noticed that I keep having the thought, that I’m a bad missionary. Or I noticed that I keep having the thought that none of the girls in my ward are gonna like me. Or I noticed that I keep having the thought that I am not a good teacher. Okay, so this is totally different than just believing all on its own, like, none of the girls are gonna like me, I’m not a good teacher. It’s, I noticed that I keep having this thought, one of the ways that you can create so much awareness around your thoughts is by doing a thought download, which I teach you about how to do that really, thoroughly, in episode, Episode 82. So you can go check that out if you’re interested. But it’s basically a brain dump. So you can see the thoughts that you’re thinking, okay, so instead of just believing everything your brain says and being in the tornado, have your thoughts step outside and observe the tornado of thoughts. Just that awareness alone, sometimes has the ability to shift it. Because maybe we just think I noticed the thought I keep having the thought that I’m not a good mom. And I’m like, huh, do I want to think that? I mean, it’s okay that I do. But is that something I want to change? I don’t know. So that awareness is enough sometimes just to bring awareness to it. Okay, we can also bring awareness to feelings that we’re having. So instead of being in the middle of the tornado, feeling anxious, feeling overwhelmed, feeling worried, feeling inadequate, whatever it is, we get out of the tornado, we observe the tornado. Like, oh, I noticed that every time I go to teach a lesson on my mission, I start to feel All inadequate. Okay, hmm, that’s interesting. That’s good to know. I wonder what that’s about. Or maybe we’re in the middle of the lesson and we notice all of that inadequacy start to fill in fill up inside our bodies. And just bringing awareness to it alone, like, I noticed, I’m feeling the emotion of inadequacy. Just that awareness alone can cause the emotion to start to dissipate. That’s why when I talk about allowing emotions and processing emotions, I always teach my clients, one of the first things is you just give the emotion a name. So last night, for some reason, I was feeling particularly anxious. And I didn’t actually have to get into any sort of like, giving it a name or describing it in my body. All I actually had to do is be like, I noticed, I’m feeling anxious. And just that awareness alone, pause the emotion to calm down, and to start to dissipate and move through. And maybe it needs to sound like I noticed, I’m feeling anxious, and that’s okay. All right. So another thing that you can bring awareness to is your behavior and the actions that you’re taking. It’s that I notice that every time there’s a district meeting, and I have something planned, and the district leader starts to kind of take over and acts like he’s going to skip over the part that I have planned, that I don’t speak up. Okay, I notice that every time my companion gives me any sort of like, constructive feedback, that I get defensive, and I want to kind of fight back. Okay, just getting out of that tornado, where we’re doing the thing and kind of spinning like that Tasmanian devil, if we get out of it and observe it, it automatically shifts just because we brought awareness to it. Now, this concept of awareness, like can have so much more 10x power, if you do these three things. Number one, if you can drop all of the judgment number two, if you don’t add any meaning to any of it. And number three, offer yourself, compassion. Okay? So again, drop all of the judgment. This means it’s okay, that I’m thinking the way I’m thinking it’s okay that I’m feeling the way I’m feeling. And it’s okay. And it makes sense that sometimes they show up in the way that I show up, and it’s okay, it’s all good. It’s called being human. Number two, don’t add any meaning. I get this a lot, right. It’s like, I don’t know why I’m thinking that way. I don’t know why I’m feeling this way. As if there has to be like some deep seated like, dark hidden, I don’t know. Cause for what’s going on in the way that we’re feeling. I don’t recommend that at all. I don’t recommend adding meaning to any of it. So like, don’t we don’t have to add meaning like, I don’t know why I’m thinking like that. I got to figure that out. Because if I’m thinking that that must mean I don’t love myself, no, don’t don’t get into any of that. It’s like a rabbit hole. And we really know why is because we have this lower brain or don’t add any meaning to the way that you’re feeling. Sometimes you don’t even get to be in charge of that. Sometimes we’re just gonna have an emotional wave and, and it is what it is. We don’t have to be like, Why am I feeling so frustrated with my companion I shouldn’t be feeling frustrated. And that means I’m a bad missionary don’t give any meaning to it and don’t give any meaning to your behaviors. Like if I if I snap at my companion or if I am short with my family on the phone or if I you know, snap at my boss or something like that. Just bring awareness to it. We don’t have to add any meaning. That means I’m in grateful or that means I’m the worst just don’t do any of that. Okay? Just create awareness and number three, offer yourself compassion

19:42 which is when you’re having thoughts, no matter what they are, offer yourself compassion and be like, Oh my gosh, yes, it’s okay self. Like we get out of the tornado and then we offer that tornado that we’re in compassion when we’re absorbed Being from the outside. And oh my gosh, self, it’s really hard to feel frustrated. It’s okay, though. I got you are Oh my goodness self. Man, we sure didn’t, you know, show up the way we wanted to with our siblings or with our boss, and that’s okay. Like, it’s okay, you’re human, maybe you will want to do it different next time, maybe not, it’s all totally fine. Okay, so maybe just practice this week, getting out of the tornado, where you are thinking thoughts, feeling feelings, and having all these behaviors and actions that you’re taking. And see if you can create a little bit of separation, a little bit of awareness, by stepping outside of it, and observing you. You will be amazed at how much power that has just all by itself, when you can separate from you, from your own thoughts, feelings and behaviors just a little bit, that awareness has the ability to create massive change. And even if it’s not massive change, right at first, this is the first step to creating massive change is first awareness. All right. And by the way, we can do this for other people too. We can observe their thoughts not that we know them, just by reading their mind, we would know someone’s thoughts because they would say them to us, they would tell us how, what they’re thinking. We can also do this for other people observe their feelings and observe their behaviors. But then also, it’s so powerful, right? If we use these three steps for them to drop the judgment for them, drop the meaning that we add and offer compassion to them as well. Okay, so just play with it. create awareness for you. See if you can step out of that tornado that you have with someone else, and observe it from the outside. And that just creates so much power and so much change. Okay? Everyone have the most amazing week, sending love to the missionaries all over the world, I think about you every single day, take care. Serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints can present a unique set of challenges. And many of those challenges you might not even see coming. So you’re gonna want a unique set of solutions. It’s easier than you think to overcome worry and anxiety, serve the successful mission you’ve always dreamed up and navigate your post mission experience with confidence. That is why I created some amazing free goodies that I’m sharing in my show notes. Maybe you want to grab the free training for preparing missionaries, my video course for RMS or maybe you and I should hop on a free strategy call. If you’re ready to take your preparedness to serve or your preparedness to come home to the next level. Then go grab one of those freebies. And in the meantime, no matter which part of the mission experience you are involved in. Just know that Jenny, the LDS mission coach is thinking about you every single day

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Hey! I'm Jennie - The LDS Mission Coach.

Preparing for, serving and coming home from an LDS Mission can present countless changes and transitions. I’ve seen these changes put missionaries at the mercy of their emotions and questioning their abilities. With the tools I teach, young adults empower themselves to navigate every moment of the mission experience with epic, unwavering confidence.

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