One year I decided to take a different approach. I decided to open myself to a different way of thinking and experience for myself what everyone around me seemed to be in on. I decided to take notes.
So my preparation for Conference that year was to find a suitable notepad and pen.
I felt uneasy, though, because I still believed in the futility of writing down what speakers were saying. So I decided to take a slightly different approach. Instead of noting what they said, I would note what actions the speakers’ words inspired me to take. I would note the improvements that I needed to make in myself.
This would leave me with a list of things to work on over the next six months. I couldn’t wait for Conference to start so that I could begin.
How my experiment played out
Eventually that time came, and I began my experiment. I’ve been a walking construction zone for many years, so generating a list of imperfections came rather easily. And I actually felt good about what I was doing.
That is, I felt good until I examined my list.
The list was six full pages long! These were standard 8-1/2"x11" sheets with very little white space on each page. I felt completely overwhelmed. How was I even to begin working on the list let alone complete it in the next six months? I didn’t even want to start.
And I determined I would never do that again.
A new approach
Of course, a few months later as Conference approached again, the question I'd been avoiding confronted me. What would I do now?
I knew repeating the past would be insane. But I still felt like my previous idea was not without some merit. Why shouldn’t I be looking to prophets and apostles to learn time-pertinent action I need to take?
In time, I determined I'd simply look for the one or two items that most need my attention. That list is a lot less intimidating. And I would be focusing on those actions I most need to take given my current position in life.
That approach has worked extremely well for me. It's now my standard practice. When Conference time rolls around, I begin to think about that question: What are the one or two areas that I most need to work on during the next six months?
President Uchtdorf chimes in
President Uchtdorf had some similar thoughts on preparing for Conference that he offered back in 2011. In addition, he advocates thinking about present questions you have in preparation for receiving answers on how to proceed. But he also suggests not discounting anything you may think you've heard before and instead acting on the prompting you receive. If you have a few minutes to read his remarks, I highly recommend it.
How do you prepare for Conference? What have you done that has worked particularly well for you? Please leave a comment and share that goodness with everyone else!
Howdy! I'm Lance, host of Joy in the Journey Radio. I've been blogging about LDS singles life since 2012, and since 2018 I've been producing a weekly radio show to help LDS singles have more joy in their journey and bring all Latter-day Saints together. Let's engage a conversation that will increase the faith of LDS singles and bring singles and marrieds together in a true unity of the faith.
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