12. When You Don’t Know

Feeling stuck, have a big decision to make, or not sure what to do next?  Join me on the podcast today where you will learn the sentence that your brain loves to offer you, that only keeps you stuck.  Listen in to understand:

  • how to stop being confused
  • how to tap into your very best wisdom for decision making

0:00 Hey, what’s up everybody? It’s Jennie the LDS mission coach and you are listening to the LDS mission Podcast, episode number 12. When you don’t know. I’m Jennie the LDS mission coach. And whether you are 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. Hello, everybody. Welcome to the podcast. I’m excited to be with you. How has your week been my week has been awesome. My son came home from his mission last week. And that was an awesome reunion. Also some very tender moments as we went to the state president for him to get released lots of tears, hard to close that chapter, I think for all of us, but in the meantime, we have really enjoyed just hanging out together as a family, getting caught up on music and movies, all of the things. It’s really a beautiful time when a missionary comes home from the mission i i have really treasured this time that we have with my whole family under one roof just for a couple of weeks here before all of them go off to school. Speaking of school, my younger kids start school a week from today. So that will be exciting. We will. We are all looking forward to that. My one daughter starting high school. So that’s a whole new stage for her. Just lots of good times happening around here. I hope things are going well. For you, too. I wanted to mention that at the end of my podcast, I always say if you want to learn more about what I do, go to Jennie dildine.com. And I wanted to just put it on here right here at the beginning of what I do. I’m a certified life coach with advanced certification and faith based coaching tools, which means I am an expert at helping preparing missionaries currently serving missionaries and return missionaries show up powerfully in their lives, create epic, unwavering confidence, step powerfully into their potential and never question their purpose. Again, it’s some of the most fun and rewarding work that I do. And if you’re interested in maybe hopping on a strategy, call with me, I would love to talk to you and meet you, you can go to my website, Jennie dildine.com. There’s also a link on my Instagram page where we can have a strategy session together. It’s a free session where we can talk about specifically what is going on for you if you are having a lot of anxiety about going on your mission. If you’re on your mission, you’re having some difficulties with a companion. If you’re a returned missionary, and you’re terrified to jump back into dating, or back into school, or whatever is going on for you. I am here to help you. And I can help you very, very effectively on that strategy call. So I invite you to hop on with me, I would love love to meet you. Also just one quick reminder about the webinar that I have coming up in September, which will be for missionary mamas, which will be awesome. And it will be all about how to help your struggling missionary. When our kids are around or just at college, it seems like we have a little bit more access to them. So it seems like we can help more effectively because we can have interaction with them every day on the mission. As I know, well, as a mom, it can be more challenging when we only have that touch point every week or so. And so I’m going to give you guys some tools about how to really help your missionary how to show up powerfully as the mom with love instead of feeling like we need to fix them or change them. I’m going to empower you to be the best version of you that you can be as a missionary mom, so that’s awesome. So that’s just on the horizon. Keep a lookout for that. Today we are talking about what to do when you don’t know.

4:54 I coach many young adults just like you who are often can fused, they’re confused about what school to attend whether to serve a mission or not, which apartment complex to live in which major to choose? Which job offer to accept. Many of you are asking questions like, should I go home for the summer? Should I do summer sales? Should I take a semester off? should I date or even marry this certain person? What should I do after I graduate? There’s a lot of questions that we have in this stage of your lives. Even every day activities sometimes can seem to get us stuck sometimes, right? Like, what should we do this weekend? What should I write my essay on? Where should we meet for lunch? Even just as simple as what do we want to do? Now I’ve talked a lot about our human brains. And they’re really tricky. They have three objectives. And that is to seek pleasure, avoid pain and conserve energy, our brain would just love it. If we would just watch Netflix and nap all day. Any yummy food, okay? It wants to conserve energy. And so our brains love the phrase, I don’t know. Because if we don’t know what to do, if we don’t know where to go to lunch, or what to major in or who to date, then we don’t have to do anything at all. Right, our brains get to conserve energy, it’s much more challenging for our brains to get out and do something. If we choose a major, we got to take steps towards completing that major. So it’s much easier for us to just stay in I don’t know. But here’s what you need to know about. I don’t know. It’s a thought. And what I teach is that thoughts create feelings. When you think the thought I don’t know, you will most likely feel confused. I’ve observed this phenomenon of thinking that that I don’t know and then being confused. In my daughter’s a couple years ago, one of my daughters needed to write an essay on why she wanted to join the yearbook staff. And why I asked her why she wanted to join the yearbook staff and what she was going to write about, all she could say was, I don’t know, I don’t know what to write. And I observed this almost every day and one of my other daughters, my youngest daughter who doesn’t know what to eat for lunch, she will come to me regularly and say, I don’t know what to eat for lunch. And I say the pantry is full, the fridge is full. And she’s like I know, but I still don’t know. I’ve observed this phenomenon of I don’t know and being confused in myself almost daily. Over the last four years, I’ve been writing letters to my missionaries, the first one left and came home and then the second one left and came home. And every single Sunday, my brain would be like I just don’t know what to write, I don’t know what to say. Or even my weekly Tuesday tidbit, which is my email that goes out to give you helpful tools and strategies and inspiration if you’re currently serving. Or if you’re preparing or if you’re returned missionary or missionary mama. Every week I sit down to write my Tuesday tidbit. And my brain tells me I don’t know what to say, I don’t know what to write. I don’t know what people need to hear. Or even before I recorded this podcast, I kind of wrestled with myself all week long about I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to put on the podcast. Our brains love, I don’t know. Because when we are confused, then we don’t have to get going on solutions, or writing your book essays, or crafting podcasts or writing emails. For our brains hanging out in I don’t know being confused, is so much easier. And I don’t know is not useful. Typically, when we think I don’t know and feel confused, we actually close ourselves off to figuring out the answer.

9:18 It just seems logical, right? Like, I don’t know how to do that. I don’t know what to do next. And yet, when we think that it’s like we put up a wall in our brain that blocks us from figuring out the solution we just become more stuck. And as long as we keep believing this thought that we don’t know. We won’t take action and we won’t move forward I think of confusion as what I call an indulgent emotion. And what I mean by this is it kind of feels good to stay in confusion because then we don’t have to do anything. A couple other indulgent and Emotions are worry, maybe overwhelm. And these feel good to our brain. Because we’re not moving forward or we’re not moving backward, we just get to stay stuck, right where we are. Some of you might be thinking, Well, I’m just bad at making decisions, I really don’t know what to do. And here I want to offer you, there’s three reasons why. And maybe there’s more of it, I came up with these three reasons why your brain doesn’t want to decide. Our brains think that our choices that we make are forever. Our brain, like I’ve talked about before earlier, is that it doesn’t want to take action or get going, it wants to be lazy. And the third thing is, our brain thinks that if we make one decision, that decision will provide only positive emotion. And the opposite decision will provide only negative emotion. So let’s talk about each of these things really quick. Number one brain thinks that your decision is forever, we know this is not true, right? We can make a decision and change our minds tomorrow, even or 10 minutes from now. It’s not forever, it’s not set in stone, even things that we think are set in stone aren’t always set in stone. So second reason that your brain doesn’t want to decide it doesn’t want to get moving or start taking action. So the solution to this is we just start moving and taking action. Don’t wait until you know, just start going. And the third one is that our brain thinks one decision will provide only positive emotion. And the other one will provide only negative emotion. And so it doesn’t want to decide it just wants to stay there and not have to open yourself up to negative emotion, it just would rather not choose and stay stuck and confused. Your brain does not want you to decide it doesn’t want you to start moving forward. It doesn’t want you to make a forever decision. And it doesn’t want to step into negative emotion. But if we believe our brain, we would never decide anything. So this is what I suggest. You just need to pick something and start taking action. And what’s funny is it doesn’t even really matter which course of action you take, because you can change your mind later if you want to just start practicing the skill of making a decision. And moving forward. Every day when I start writing content for my Instagram feed, or for my podcast, or for my email, I just tell myself, Jenny, just start writing. I like to offer my clients this analogy. So picture yourself like you’re in the middle of a lake on a boat. And you’ve got these different shores different options of things that you can do. Let’s say one shore is a dance major. One shore is a music major one short is a physics major. And one short is a statistics major. Well, as soon as you think, I don’t know which shore to row to, a fog rolls in and envelops that boat that you’re sitting in.

13:44 And the fog is thick enough that you block yourself from trying to figure out which direction to row. Now remember, your brain loves to conserve that energy. And so it loves the fog. Because as long as it’s foggy, we don’t have to pick up those oars and start rowing. But a little brain hack that I’ve learned is this instead of thinking, I don’t know, I always tell myself, I know exactly what to do here. Now, you may not believe that thought at first, but you will be amazed at the clarity that comes just by switching out that one thought that one sneaky tiny thought I don’t know, which causes confusion when we switch it to. I know exactly what to do here will create confidence and allow you to get rowing that boat to another shore. I always tell myself I don’t know is a lie. I actually do know and you actually know to most of the time. It’s just your own wisdom that you can draw from No, I’m not suggesting that we don’t research our options and decide which major we want to choose and figure out what kind of salary maybe we could have. I’m not suggesting that we just put our heads in the sand, and blindly pointed ashore and start rowing? No. What I’m suggesting is that we don’t paralyze ourselves and block ourselves from the answer by thinking the thought, I don’t know. So here’s a couple other brain hacks for you. Instead of thinking, I don’t know, think, I don’t know, yet. Just add that little yet at the end, and it changes the whole feeling. Another thought you can think is, I am figuring this out. Another thought you can think is, of course, I’ll know what to do. Everything and I just don’t know what’s gonna happen in the future, I don’t know what I’m going to do. Tell yourself instead, of course, I’ll know what to do. When your brain goes to, I don’t know, just kind of see it as a little flag waving in the air, a little cue to you that your brain is trying to trick you tricky brain into being stuck in the middle of that, like, not going anywhere. So when you notice that you’re thinking, I don’t know, instead of thinking, I don’t know, if I’m ready for my mission, try thinking instead, I’m figuring out how to be ready for my mission. Do you feel the difference there? Instead of thinking, I don’t know what I want my major to be. Think. I’m not sure what my major is just yet. See how we just added yet on to the end of it. And it changes the way it feels, it opens us up to possibility. Instead of thinking, when I get home from my mission, I won’t know how to jump back into dating. Instead of thinking that, try thinking, of course, I will know how to jump back into dating, it might not feel super believable to you. But at least that thought will propel you forward, it’ll get you rolling in the direction that you want to go. Instead of thinking, I don’t know how to get along with this companion, they’re so different than me. Try thinking instead, of course, I’ll figure out how to get along with this companion like, of course, that opens your brain up to other solutions, other possibilities of how to tackle the problem you’re trying to figure out. Now, sometimes what we do is we start moving in a direction, we start rowing towards a certain shore on that lake. And then we second guess ourselves, and we start rowing one direction, and then we turn around and go back to the middle of the lake.

18:04 And then we think, again, I don’t know what to do, maybe that wasn’t right. And then the fog comes in. I’ve coached my husband on this actually quite a bit is because he feels like he has a hard time making decisions. And I said, Honey, what you’re doing is you’re starting down one path and then coming back to the middle, and starting one down one path and coming back to the middle and starting down one route on the lake and then coming back to the middle. And in the meantime, he hasn’t figured anything out. Because once you start taking action and you land on a shore, it’s true that you might end up on a shore that you hadn’t planned on. But that’s totally fine. It’s actually awesome. Because guess what you’ve learned in the meantime, in the rowing, and the arriving at the shore is maybe I don’t want to be a dance major. Okay, try that. Maybe I don’t want to be a statistics major. Maybe I don’t want to do this as a career. Maybe I don’t want to date this person. But we never know. Until we get in that boat and we start rowing and we land on the short, don’t worry, you will learn so many things in your journey there. And you will gain so much insight on how to chart your next course to your next destination. Don’t buy into the lie that your brain is telling you don’t waste any more time thinking I don’t know. You totally know what to do here. When you’re sitting in that lake with all of these decisions in front of you, and you start to think I don’t know. And that fog comes in and you feel like you’re stuck and you can’t see your way out of it. Just change your thought from I don’t know, to something different. Like I don’t know yet. I’m figuring this out. Or of course I’ll know What to do? Listen guys, inspiration never happens while you’re sitting in that boat in the middle of the lake surrounded by fog. Inspiration always comes in the doing when you take action is when the inspiration comes when your brain is able to problem solve and figure out what it’s trying to figure out. So pick up those oars, and just start rowing. Thank you so much for listening to the podcast today. If you want to learn more about what I do, you can go to Jennie dildine.com. Or just come hang out with me on Instagram at Jennie dot the LDS mission coach and Jennie is spelled with an IE. Remember, no matter which part of the mission experience that you’re involved in, just know that Jennie 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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