Episode 67: Uncover the Instrument You Need to Help the People You Love

Aug 01, 2022
 

  

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As I have worked with women as a therapist over the past 16 years there is a common theme among their struggles. They feel a lot of stress and anxiety caused by their desire to help their loved ones. They feel compelled to be the person that listens, fixes, and heals everyone they love. 

I have seen many women have so much stress over a loved one that they can’t sleep, can’t eat ore even function in their daily tasks. I have seen women struggle to communicate to their loved ones about what they see is best for them but their loved one doesn’t see it that way or are unwilling to listen. I have seen women struggle to know how to help a loved one that was struggling because they just weren’t sure how to. I have even seen women agonize over being able to teach their loved ones what they need to in order to prepare them to enter this fallen world on their own.

Although women know they cannot fix everything it makes sense they are overwhelmed with those emotions because we are continually asked to help people and especially our loved ones. Even this past conference, President Nelson said  “We call upon people everywhere to pray for those in need, to do what they can to help the distressed.”  He obviously has great intentions with that counsel but we do feel a lot of pressure to help. 

As women come to see me and seek guidance on how to proceed I noticed one common theme the Lord teaches me every time. It is trusted instrument and I want to share it with you. But first, I want to tell you a quick story about myself and why I started using it.

About 10 years ago I was feeling enormous pressure to provide healing and care for the individuals that were seeing me for therapy. I had been helping people as a therapist for about 10 years at this point. People who were facing the biggest struggles of their lives. 

I was also working full-time, being a mom, a wife and fulfilling a calling. Even my kids were struggling with things that I, as a therapist, should know how to deal with but I didn’t. I was barely keeping my head above water. I had no idea how to help everyone in my life that needed my help and I had a masters degree in helping people so I felt like I should be capable of doing it all. I felt like no matter what I did I was unsure if it was the right thing. I questioned myself a lot and lost sleep as I agonized on what to do for everyone.

Then the breaking point came. I lost some patients and a coworker to suicide. I was broken. Who was I to help people? I felt unsure, inadequate, fearful and drained. How could I continue to help people if I didn’t even know what I needed, my family, or my patients needed?

As I reached out for my own mental health support I began implementing the same skills that I teach in the Removing Roadblocks and Revelation Program.  As I did, I began to see that the one person that knows exactly what every individual person needs is the Savior. I learned to connect with the Savior and “hear Him” to truly receive the revelation I needed to continue doing the important work He needs me to do.

I felt a massive load taken off of my shoulders. I no longer felt I needed to know what each individual person needed from me. I wasn't alone as I treated patients, helped my children and those I love. I had direct access to the Savior and He knows exactly what that person needs. All I need to do is stay connected to the Savior so I can provide them with what they need. That is when I realized that revelation is the instrument I needed to help the people I loved.

You might be thinking that is obvious but sometimes we discount revelation because it doesn’t seem like what is best. Or we try to push our own agenda because we think we know better. Or maybe we are unsure if we are even receiving revelation or if we are just experiencing anxiety. There are also times when we share something and the person we are trying to help doesn’t listen so we chalk that up to not receiving revelation. I would like to address each of those concerns specifically because they are valid points and can lead us to not relying on revelation as the instrument we need to help our loved ones. 

I already know what is best.

I can’t tell you how many countless times I have had revelation come to my mind when I am working with someone and I think to myself, “are you serious? You want me to say that? I don’t even know what that means." But I’ve done this enough to trust the process and move forward and almost every time someone says “that’s exactly what I needed to hear.”

However, I have also had times where I didn’t want to listen and I asserted my own will on the situation and it usually ended in conflict. Elder Anderson in the April 2022 conference said “remain confident in our faith, sharing our beliefs with conviction but always avoid of anger or malice.”

I notice when I am speaking from a place of receiving revelation it never has anger or malice in the tone at all. Usually when we are feeling that anger as we are trying to help loved ones it is because we want to assert our own will on the situation.

And I am not saying it’s easy to avoid asserting our own will. What I am saying is that if we want to receive information from a source that knows EXACTLY how your loved one feels and knows what will help them the very most, we must put down our idea of how the helping should go. We need to rely on the revelation we receive and proceed with the spiritual guidance we receive.

 Everyone has their agency.

 When we help our loved ones we will feel prompted to say or do certain things.  Those promptings from the Holy Ghost is guidance from our Heavenly Parents. That is revelation. Unfortunately, even if we feel prompted to share something and we do, that does not mean the person we are helping has to listen of head our advice. This can be frustrating and often times will make us question whether or not our advice was revelation. Remember, our loved one's response to our advice is not the indicator of revelation. 

I recently read a talk by Elder Anderson from the 2022 April General Conference and he brought up two principles we should remember when trying to be peacemakers. As I read his words I felt that they also apply to helping loved ones when receiving revelation. 

“Two important principles guide our desire to be peacemakers. First, our Heavenly Father has given each individual his or her moral agency, with the ability to choose one’s own path. This agency is one of the greatest gifts of God. Second, with this agency, our Heavenly Father allowed for 'opposition in all things.' We 'taste the bitter, that [we] may know to prize the good.' Opposition should not surprise us.”

I loved these two principles. Just because you act on revelation doesn’t mean things will turn out perfectly or the way you wanted. When we act on revelation we receive in helping someone it does not mean they will take it as such. Everyone has agency to choose. If you chalk that up to “well it must not have been revelation then,” you will be missing out on future opportunities to receive revelation.

We must also consider, as Elder Anderson taught, "opposition should not surprise us." When we receive revelation it doesn’t mean the path will be easy and without resistance. Our Heavenly Parents allow us to face opposition and difficulties for a myriad of reasons. One benefit to opposition can be that we are inclined to turn to the Savior for comfort and guidance, thus building a stronger relationship with Him. That relationship will help us receive revelation with clarity and trust. 

Is it anxiety or revelation?

Knowing the difference between the two is such a hard thing to do. Especially if anxiety rules our lives and drives a lot of our decision making. For example, if you often make decisions about things just to make the anxiety go away, you may develop a habit of relying on anxiety rather than revelation. It takes time and practice.

Learning tools to quiet your mind and receive better revelation is vital if this is the reason you can’t help your loved ones by receiving revelation. Anxiety can drown out the still small voice and cause you to not feel peace even if you are moving forward in the right direction.

The power of discernment is crucial. As I started to learn how to quiet my mind and tune into the frequency of revelation then I was better able to accomplish what I needed to do. I felt more calm, peaceful, clarity, confidence, and faith as I strived to help the people I love.

Our own personal thoughts will often keep us from receiving revelation. It can be very confusing at times. Those thoughts are roadblocks. As I have worked with many women over the years I have been able to teach them to remove mental barriers so they can be in tune with God and receive the revelation they need to help the ones they love.

In fact, I created a whole program around it because I saw so many women struggling with their thoughts and how they affect revelation. The program is called Removing Roadblocks to Revelation and I am opening up enrollment for the last time this year at the end of August. If you heard yourself having some of the same struggles as I talked about today in the podcast definitely jump on the waitlist so you can join us next time it opens.

 

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