12 March 2012

Speaking in Church: "Stress and the Gospel of Jesus Christ"

The Balm of Gilead.

Two weeks ago, I was asked if I would be a guest speaker in church. I obliged, but I struggled to find a good topic. Finally, since a lot of my friends and I are going through a lot of hard times and since I love the practical application of the gospel, I decided to go through all sorts of sources looking for every thing one can do to deal with stress in a healthy manner. I loved to see that the suggestions given by secular sources can be found in the scriptures or in good talks given by Church leaders. As I worked on the talk, the list of advice for stress reduction/increasing happiness grew ridiculously long. However, I didn't feel like I wanted to give a list that wasn't complete though, so I forged on.

By the time I had to give the talk (yesterday), the list was up to 44 items. Since then, I have added one more.

Sunday morning, I knew I was going to have to cut out a lot of material, so I went through and changed everything to bullet points, and then I put asterisks next to the items I most wanted to share. Then, I waited and waited for my ride to come get me to take me to church, which was to start at 11:30. Minutes ticked by as I stood on the porch, talk, jacket, and scripture bag in hand, waiting for the right car to come down the street. Each time I started to feel anxious, I thought of everything I had just put into a 15-page talk and tried to calm myself down. I asked, "Is it really going to matter in a year that I was late to church on the day I was supposed to speak?" and then assured myself, "This is going to be a funny story to tell."

Everything did turn out okay even though I raced through the talk. Sure, it was super-long, but I really feel like what I gathered is a good resource, so I decided to share it with anyone who wants it.

Open it here: "Stress and the Gospel of Jesus Christ." Enjoy. And you're welcome to share the link to this page with anyone you think the 45 tips might help. (Just please don't expect me to exemplify everything in there all in one fell swoop--I'm as imperfect as anyone else.)


  1. That was a wonderful talk, with lots of great of information! You are amazing =)

  2. Great list! Well thought out! I think you could use it as an outline for a book. I'll be watching for it at Deseret Book.

  3. Nice job, Michelle! It left me wanting to research more about all the counsel we've received on the different topics.

    In the mood to write a book? This would be a good one!

  4. Wow! What a marvelous result of inspired research. Thank you so much for sharing your hard work for the benefit of others.