Wednesday, April 23, 2014

5 Steps for Getting More from a Conference or Devotional Talk, Part 2

Go here for Part 1.

Here's how the five steps worked for me today.

I just studied a recent conference talk "Protection from Pornography -- A Christ-Focused Home" by Linda S. Reeves.  Here's how I used the five steps. 

1. I printed the talk on paper to read and mark. 

Since this is a topic I feel passionate about, and since I loved the talk, I knew this talk would be one I would keep in my file and refer to later, so it's worth printing it. 

2. I marked my favorite parts. 

3. I boxed in three favorite quotes.
  • "I must testify of the blessings of daily scripture study and prayer and weekly family home evening. These are the very practices that help take away stress, give direction to our lives, and add protection to our homes." (I even wrote in the margin by this quote, "I felt the Spirit :)" 
  • "Filters are useful tools, but the greatest filter in the world, the only one that will ultimately work, is the personal internal filter that comes from a deep and abiding testimony of our Heavenly Father's love and our Savior's atoning sacrifice for each one of us." 
  • "It is OK if the house is a mess and the children are still in their pajamas and some responsibilities are left undone. The only things that really need to be accomplished in the home are daily scripture study and prayer and weekly family home evening." 

4. I wrote this summary phrase at the top. 

5. Here are the action items I wrote at the end of the talk.

It was a good reminder of goals I've set before. I'm recommitting to doing better with them. 

 Here is what action I took immediately. 

I called my kiddos together to have a mid-afternoon family devotional. We had slept in, and missed our normal 6:30 AM family scripture study. So after writing down these action items, I took action right away. We sang a hymn, said a family prayer, and for the scripture part, I shared things about this talk -- my favorite quotes, summary, and action list.

Just like happens sometimes with family scripture study, there was grumbling and resistance at the beginning. But by the end, the Spirit was there and everyone was peaceful and participating. Aahhhh. I love that transformation. Touches my heart every time. 

The icing on the cake happened at the end of family devotional. My 12 year-old son said: 

"Mom, thank you for being strong with your rules... I'm glad you are." 

The reward.

Now this conference talk is imprinted in my heart. I know it. I remember it. I can tell you the main principles, the summary, and how I am applying it. I know it is truth because as I studied it the Spirit witnessed its truthfulness to me.  Was it worth investing some extra time to study this talk more deeply? 



Jeniece said...

Love this. Thank you.
Just curious what your acronym "PETSL" stands for in your action list. I've been trying to set boundaries for media use for myself...I have incorporated chores and PWR actions into my "must dos" but I noticed your acronym and wondered what else you strive to complete before you allow media for yourself. Thanks for sharing.

Becky Edwards said...

Hi Jeniece,
Thank you for your nice message. PETSL is an acronym I've been using lately to help me touch bases with several tasks I want to do each day (if I'm home) that if I don't touch base with them, they can build up and get pretty overwhelming. Sometimes I set my watch timer for 5 minutes and see how much I can get done of one task. They are:

P- Papers: Quickly sort and put away the pile of papers on my desk
E- Emails: Quickly triage and dejunk the emails that came in that day. Five minutes isn't enough time to process and respond to a day's emails, but it helps me touch base and whittle it down to just the ones I need.
T- Tasks. Check my task list for today. I don't have the best memory, so sometimes I'll write a task (to-do) list the night before, and then totally forget to look at it the next day! This reminds me to check it.
S- Decide what I need to be studying currently, or start my study for the day.
L- Logs. I have a goal log where I track how I'm doing on goals and habits I'm working on. This little log reminds me of the little things that make a big difference. So this reminds me to check the log and fill it in.

I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions!

Becky Edwards said...

I forgot to explain PWR habits.

P- Pray
W- Write in journal
R- Read scriptures or general conference talk