When I have grown a foot or two…
Do you ever wonder how you can best prepare your children for a mission? How to build a level of resilience in them to be able to conquer the world on their own?… In this podcast episode, we explore how to best prepare for a mission and really, any unexpected challenge or unexpected experience that may arise.
You will learn that the key is mental and emotional resilience in this preparation process. To all parents…please consider how you can help your children develop these skills as they grow. But to all missionaries, return missionaries, and listeners, please listen up! You can benefit from these practices too.
It is essential for you to learn and understand these tools and strategies for yourself before you can effectively teach or support others in your journey. Listen in to learn five key concepts to start implementing today! Each of these concepts provide a different level and kind of self-confidence that you and/or your children will need.
Get the Full Show Notes HERE
Free Training for Preparing Missionaries: Change Your Mission with this One Tool
Free Video Series: 3 Tools to Help RMs in Their Transition Home
Free Guide: 5 Tips to Help Any Returning Missionary
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0:00 Hey everybody is Jennie Dildine, the LDS mission coach and you are listening to the LDS mission Podcast, episode number 115 When I have grown a foot or two. 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.
0:53 Hey, everybody, welcome to the podcast. I’m so happy you’re here. I’m so happy that you care about missionaries. I’m so happy that you are a missionary. I’m so glad and happy for you that you are prioritizing your mental and emotional well being in every aspect of the mission experience. Because here’s one thing that’s funny too, is I do hear a lot from missionary moms who are like, Oh my gosh, I got my son or daughter listening to the podcast. But it’s also really good tools for me too. So I’m hoping that you all you missionary moms, parents, grandparents are getting what you want out of this podcast, too. We got some fun sort of things coming down the pipeline at Jennie Dildine. Coaching and with our LDS mission coaching program, something I is going to be launching late September, early October. And you can picture it, sort of like a pre MTC. And we’re not going to call it that it’s actually going to be called Mission prep plus, and I am seriously so excited about it. Because we can think about it, I want you to think about it like a in addition to or a companion to the training that you’re getting at your mission prep course from college or the one that your steak is putting on, or even a little bit of a preparation. To go into the MTC, what we sometimes even see is that sometimes our missionaries go into the MTC, you guys go into the MTC, and then you already start to have some of these tendencies towards anxiety, overwhelm, feeling like you’re not good enough comparison, perfectionism, which totally makes sense, by the way, because that’s just what our brain does when we’re presented with a new sort of challenging situation. And so the idea with this program is, we actually are going to help you understand the tools and strategies to manage your mission from the beginning, from the time that you go to the MTC until the time that you get off the plane, and even months after. One of the really fun things about the preparing missionaries that have gone through my program is that their moms or their dads will email me right before they come home and say we’re going to need your help again, I know that transition after the mission is super hard. And in my mind, I know Oh, except for this person already knows the tools, because they’ve already been through my program. And what we find is not only do these tools help missionaries navigate the mission itself, but it becomes much easier for them to navigate that transition home. And without exception, every preparing missionary that’s gone through my course, through my program. They don’t actually end up needing my help after the mission because they already know what to do. I was on a strategy call today actually with a preparing missionary. And she was telling me can you just tell me what to expect about how long I’m going to be with my trainer? Can you tell me what to expect when I go into the MTC? Can you tell me what to expect when I meet with my mission president for the first time. And it just really dawned on me again, about why the tools that we teach here are so powerful is because even though our brain tries to tell us what it thinks is coming next, or tries to plan out our future so that we feel safe and secure. None of us really know what to expect. Okay, like none of us expected COVID None of us expected that Lahaina I don’t know if you guys have been following the news with that would just like burn up in in a matter of hours. Those people didn’t expect that they probably had a different expectation of what was going to happen that day. And it didn’t. And it was totally fine that they had that expectation. But the power of what we teach here and in this program this mission prep plus is, is you will learn to know what to expect from yourself. You’ll know how to manage your emotions, you’ll know how to manage your mental headspace, you’ll know how to deal with a difficult, difficult companion, you’ll know how to manage your manage failure, you’ll know how to create confidence, you’ll know how to keep your worth intact. And it’s all such important stuff from the moment that you step into the MTC, when your brain starts to freak out. Even in the home MTC, I had a mom reach out this week and be like, My son just started the home MTC and we need your help. And yes, his brain is freaking out. And I’m like, Yeah, that’s what happens. And it’s totally fine that it does that. But you’re gonna want some tools. And that’s why I’m so so excited for Michigan prep. Plus, you’re gonna love it, it’s going to be an amazing program. So stay tuned for that we’re already hiring our mentors for that. And it’s going to be awesome. So today, what I wanted to talk about actually is a few weeks ago, in my ward, we were having a fifth Sunday thing. And the bishop wanted to talk about emotional resilience, for preparing missionaries for our teenagers, even our young adult children. And he reached out to me the night before. Or maybe it was a couple nights before. But he said, Hey, your name came into my mind about talking about mental and emotional resilience. Could you take five minutes to share something with the adults in our ward, and it wasn’t for the youth, they’d done something with the youth before the week before. So it was just for the adults. And in my mind, I did send him a text. I was like, I have 114 podcasts about this. So I don’t know if five minutes is going to be enough. And he was like, Yeah, for sure. It’s going to be very quick. We’re going to have two missionaries returned missionaries talk about their experiences, and things like that. But if you could just share a couple thoughts about this, that would help parents right now. And that’s the way I started thinking about it is what can I tell in five minutes? These parents of preparing Missionaries of teenagers have young children primary age children, what could I tell them that they could start implementing right now today, that when they’ve they’re those kids have grown her foot or two, that they’ve been sort of preparing all along, in this mental and emotional sort of resilience. And so I wanted to share those things with you today, it was a good practice for me to think, how would I boil this down into just a few things. And so the reason I called the podcast when I have grown a foot or two is I was thinking about that song. I hope they call me on a mission when I have grown a foot or two I hope by then I will be ready. And so what are we doing as parents? What are we doing ourselves to prepare ourselves or to prepare our children when they have grown a foot or two to be ready. And I think we know that there’s a lot of stuff that we do. We send them to Fs y, we send them on HSP. We have them get jobs, we have them do sports, we have them do all kinds of things to hopefully prepare them. But I do feel like this mental and emotional piece is one that we’re not super sure about how to do. So if you’re a missionary listening to this, don’t just turn this off and be like, Oh, this is just for parents, this doesn’t apply to me or whatever. Or even if you’re returned missionary.
9:12 You don’t need to just turn it off now and say, Well, I don’t have kids, and I’m not going to have them for a while and why do I need to prepare them, I actually want us to be able to think about all of these concepts as something that you can work on for yourself as well. So even though I was talking to all the adults in that room and saying to them, like, Hey, this is a way that you could talk to your kid, this is a way you could help your kid. These are the skills and strategies that you could start to cultivate within your children. I was also talking to them. Because until we learn kind of these tools and strategies for ourselves and understand them for ourselves, it’s really hard to sort of do that for someone else or to teach someone else in that way. And so really, this podcast is for all of us and these same concepts that I’m going to share with you here in just a minute are the same concept See, that I’m always working on for myself. And then I’m always working on for when I grow up when I have grown a foot or two. Okay, so um, here’s the things that I kind of went over with them in the five minutes. And when I sat down, I asked my husband, I said, Did I only take five and he’s like, Well, it was closer to 10. But you still didn’t jump in. I’m like, even 10. That was That was fast. And if I had to boil it all down, this is what I would say. So let me share with you the concepts first, okay, number one is, normalize, validate repeat. Number two is untangle worth from doing number three is stop treating negative emotion, like it’s something we need to fix. Number four is prioritize rest. And number five, everybody is different. know some of these concepts you probably have heard on the podcast before. And you’ve probably heard me talk about them in a lot of different ways. And it is valid, that each of these topics could probably warrant several podcast episodes just on each topic. But for the sake of this podcast today, and for the sake of what I was sharing in that fifth Sunday, I want to kind of boil it down for you guys into just a quick bite size way that we can start to treat ourselves and talk to ourselves and skills we can develop within ourselves. And also skills that we can develop within our our children and our teens and our young adults. And our missionaries came. So number one, normalize, validate repeat. So when we’re talking to our kids, when we’re talking to our young adults, when we’re having our own internal mind chatter, the best thing that we can do is normalize it. And the way I like to normalize things is I like to say to myself, and that makes sense. So if, if my kid says to me, like, I’m so anxious about going to school tomorrow, and be like, yeah, that totally makes sense. Or if my return missionary comes home comes and tells, you know, says something to me, like, I just feel so like, unfulfilled right now. Like, yeah, that makes sense. Totally. That makes sense. 100%. Even when my kids say things that I really think are completely like not even true. Like, my one son today was like, I’m not good at math. What our tendency to do, right is to say, no, that’s not true. You’re good at math. But instead, normalized sounds like this, it makes so much sense that you think you’re not good at math. Not true. But it makes sense that you think that way. So that’s to normalize something validate is the sentence that says and it’s okay. It makes sense, is normalize and validate is it’s okay. So, if our Preparing missionary says, I’m just feeling so much doubt about going on the mission, I don’t even know if I can handle this. Then you say, oh my gosh, yes, that makes so much sense. Number two, validate. And it’s okay, that you feel this way. So, normalize, validate, repeat, what tends to happen, right is if we don’t normalize, validate, and repeat. Our kids tend to think that there’s something wrong with them, if they’re full of doubt, or wrong with them, if they’re full of anxiety. So here’s the other thing. Remember, we can apply this to ourselves. So if you notice yourself having doubt, if you notice yourself feeling anxious, if you notice yourself super irritated with your companion, if you notice yourself overwhelmed at the prospect of going back to school this semester. normalize it? Oh my gosh, that makes so much sense that I feel anxious about going back to school and validate yourself. And it’s okay, that I feel that way. Okay, let’s move on to number two untangle worth from doing we live in a society where we value work, where we value doing, where we value achievement, where we value. Just go go go we value not resting. And this tends to happen on the mission as well. Right. I talked to one sister missionary who just told me if you don’t have your schedule full from the morning until
15:00 Good evening, I think I talked about this on the podcast last week, then you’re doing it wrong. Okay. And so and I understand like there is value in doing. But our worth is not, we do not want our kids to believe that are their worthiness or their value comes from what they do. Okay? We see this sometimes with let’s say, there’s someone who was a really good soccer player, and they played soccer, in middle school and high school, and they were going to get a scholarship to play soccer at BYU or whatever. And then their junior year, they tear their ACL. Now, they’re not playing soccer anymore. And, and I think that’s going to be a challenging situation, any way you look at it. But if that person, if that girl or that guy, their worth was tied up in what they do, that’s going to be much harder to overcome. So I as often as possible with my kids, I untangle their worth from what they’re doing, I untangle it from their grades, I untangle it from their behavior, I untangle it from they’re coming home on time from their curfew. And I just make sure that they know that no matter what, they are worthy and valuable and hold that there is no way to earn worth, there is no way to earn love. They just have it already, it follows them wherever they go. One of the ways that we can just sort of do this is when someone comes in, they’re like, oh, my gosh, look what I did. You’re like, we compliment them on their intrinsic value on what they sort of what emotions they were willing to feel to get that thing, or to do that thing. But we can also at the same time, if they don’t aren’t doing. We and we help them understand that that’s okay, too. You don’t have to do the dishes. I love you either way. But will you still do the dishes? Does that make sense? So we just start practicing untangling those things, even grades, right? This isn’t a kid will come home and say I did so well on that test. And we’re like, that’s awesome. You are you would be an amazing person, whether you did well on that test or not. Kind of fun that you did. Isn’t it fun to see what you can do. But it doesn’t change your worth. And remember, we can apply this concept to ourselves, as well. So instead of being like, look what I did, look what I did, maybe compliment yourself and be proud of yourself for who you are for the value that you brought to the table to accomplish what you did for the things that you are willing to feel for the person that you showed up as not for what you do, and for what you don’t do. Okay, not putting your worth on an outcome. But just understanding that you have intrinsic worth just because you exist on this planet. And I’ve recorded a few podcasts about this. Okay, let’s move on to number three. Stop treating negative emotion like it’s something we need to fix. This is kind of a kick I’m on right now on social media and stuff is just talking a lot about how emotions are important, how they’re valid, valid, how they’re real, how they matter. And I think as parents, we tend to discount emotion. Not only do we tend to discount emotion, but we tend to think it’s something we need to change or fix. Like, if our kid says I just feel so sad or I feel so anxious. We say Don’t feel sad, don’t feel anxious, let’s feel happy, let’s be positive. And inherently when we say don’t be sad, don’t be anxious, just be positive what our kids hear, is there something wrong with me. And what we want them to start understanding is emotion is okay, every single emotion is okay to feel all of them. It’s okay to feel them. And so, my kids, the way I talk to them is like my daughter say I’m so angry. And I’m like, Yeah, makes sense. And it’s totally okay that you’re angry. Right? Normalize, validate and repeat. And then I also say you just be angry as long as you need to. I’m just gonna be here loving you while you’re angry. It’s okay. I think the reason we want to fix it is we
20:00 Has it so uncomfortable for us. But I remember, we went to Disney World a few years back with my daughter in law. She’s now my daughter in law. In fact, they’re pulling into town here just soon my eldest son and my daughter in law, as soon as I wrap up recording this. And she was just engaged my son. So it was interesting. Like, I’m sure for her to see like, the real family dynamic on a vacation of how it all goes. And I was talking to my son after I was like, what did she think? Or was she okay with everything, and he said, you know, what she was most impressive or impressed with is how everybody was just allowed to feel whatever they needed to feel like you’re allowed to be grumpy, you’re allowed to be sad. And everybody just gets to come as they are. And it wasn’t like, Hey, listen, we’re in Disney World, everyone better be happy. It wasn’t that it was like, No, it totally makes sense. We don’t need to fix negative emotion. I think the only reason that we want to is because it feels uncomfortable to us when other people experience it. Now, this is the trick, right is then starting to do that for yourself as well. Stop treating your negative emotion as something you need to fix. It’s not it’s just vibrations, chemicals, moving through your body. And most often tell us something, they give us some information about something that’s important to you something that you really care about something that’s going on for you. It’s just information, and it’s totally okay. We don’t need to fix them. In fact, the more that we accept them and embrace them, the more like mentally and emotionally resilient we think, I think we become, Okay, number four, prioritize rest. So with this one, if you see your kids lazing around after school, it’s Oh, K, it is okay. You can say, okay, when do you think you’re gonna get to your chores, that will be awesome, if you could, and I would love it if you did. But if you need to rest, I understand it was a stressful day, take a break. Or I was actually just talking to my daughter about her homework. She was getting a little, like worked up about fractions. And I was like, why don’t you just take a break, just take a walk, you need a break to reset your mind, and everything. And again, we live in this society where it’s like, put your shoulder to the wheel, doo, doo, doo doo. And I get it. Because that’s sort of how we can judge each other. Right, we can figure out how people fit into the hierarchy, right, quote, unquote, hierarchy, if by what they do, because then we can observe that that’s something we can observe from the outside. But just prioritizing rest, prioritizing that white space in your calendar, to not be booked from sunup to sundown, I think is so so important. I’ve seen too many missionaries burnout, get frazzled get anxious, because they have not prioritized rest, I cannot emphasize this enough. And then if we turn this inward to do that for yourself, as well, as soon as we let go, if we untangle our worth from doing, we’ve stopped treating them, like negative emotion, like something we need to fix, it becomes easier to prioritize rest. And to slow down. The rest that we’re not getting is at the cost of our mental and emotional well being. So let yourself rest. And it doesn’t even mean you have to take a nap. But prioritize rest for your kids and for yourself. And number five, we just need to remember that everybody is different. Everybody comes at life a different way, the way that my oldest son served his mission is different than the way that my next son served his mission. And it’s not only just very between those two options, we are all individuals, we’re all going to serve missions in a different way. We’re all going to approach High School in a different way, we’re all going to approach our chores in a different way. And that is amazing and valuable and good. And so understand that where you might push a kid a little bit more push them to like go on that camp out without you. One kid you might push and one, one kid, you might decide you want to go on that camp out with them so that they feel a little bit more comfortable. I think you only have to be a parent to know that how different all of your kids are right? It’s the same for missionaries. Every missionary is going to handle the stress and pressure a little bit differently. Different things are going to resonate with them different things are going to make sense to them, different ways of sort of taking care of themselves are going to be different for each person based on what they’ve brought to the table, the entire life that they’ve lived up until that point, as well as all of their sort of just natural personality and tendencies. And so just understand that just because your companion is a certain way doesn’t mean that you should be that way to just because your companion wants to go, go go doesn’t mean that’s the right way for you. And so I think it’s just important to realize that everybody is different. And that is a good thing. And then if you want to turn this inside for yourself, is don’t compare. I was working with return missionary on a strategy call this week, actually. And she was really worried and think it was bad, that she compares herself to everybody. And I said, Listen, that’s just something our brain does. Our brains compare ourselves to other people. The problem isn’t the comparison. The problem is actually, when we make it mean that someone else’s way is right, and our way is wrong. So when you notice yourself being like, Oh, maybe I should do the mission that way, or, Oh, maybe I should do post mission like that, or oh, you know, just kind of comparing and looking around, maybe I should handle it that way, maybe I should be handling it better. Maybe I should be feeling worse, whatever. Just realize it’s okay, that your brain does that. And you’re different. You’re different than that person. And that’s amazing and valuable, like our Heavenly Parents created you just the way that you were supposed to be. I promise that’s true. Okay, so we want to help our kids just start to trust that they are the authority on themselves that they know what’s best for them, and that they can trust that, okay. And if we’re turning it back on yourself, start to build that trust that you are the authority on your self. And that will get you a long, long ways in your mental and emotional resilience. So, just to repeat, number one, normalize, validate repeat. Number two, untangle your worth from doing number three, stop trading negative emotion like something we need to fix. Number four, prioritize rest. And number five, everyone is different. So I hope these concepts help you. I hope these concepts help someone that you love, and I hope you all have the most amazing week, take care.
27:40 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 of, 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.