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General Relief Society Presidency Counsels LDS Women to Do Less: "You Don't Have to Do It All and You Can Be Okay with That"

During the BYU Women's Conference on May 3, Sisters Sharon Eubank and Reyna Aburto, counselors in the general Relief Society presidency, discussed ways we can overcome our differences in the Church and better minister to one another. These acts of love and reaching can be simple, they taught, and more creative than we might realize.

Sister Aburto shared a touching story of a 5-year-old who ministered to her. Shortly before she delivered her first talk in general conference, Sister Aburto was understandably nervous, but one young boy in her ward came up to her and said, "I know who is going to speak at this next general conference. You are Sister Aburto, and I am praying for you."

Even a thoughtful comment or a short prayer can be a way to minister to one another if we follow the promptings of the Spirit.

In fact, Sister Eubank set a goal for herself to follow the promptings of the Spirit once a day, and she shared, "I had no idea how creative the Spirit could be." Among the things she was prompted to do was teach kids to play Yahtzee, listen to a forgetful friend retell a story she had heard before, and even take a nap. It's incredible how seeking to do the Lord's will often aligns with what we need most.

About her goal to follow the Spirit, Sister Eubank shared this relatable experience: "Sometimes I am so pressed with everything that I have to do that I don't even know what the priority is. I've started asking the Lord every morning when I wake up, 'What is one thing you want me to do today?' I am a maximizer, so I tend to think if one is good, five is better, and ten is best, and then I am completely overwhelmed. But I have calculated if I do one thing that comes from inspiration and I do it 365 days of the year for 50 years, that would be a total of 18,250 things that the Lord wanted done. So He has counted on me 18,250 times, and I have tried to respond. That is no small thing."

But Sister Eubank realizes that even one thing a day would be an impossible feat without the strengthening power of our Savior. She said, "One of the greatest feelings is to go to bed at night and to know that you did the best you could and offer it to the Lord and say, 'I have done my best, but will you please augment my offerings with the grace of Jesus Christ?'"

Sister Aburto also spoke of simplifying our lives to focus on a few things that are right. She said, "I want to assure you the Lord accepts all your efforts. The announcements in general conference were not necessarily asking us to do more, because our lists are already full, but maybe we can do the right things, the simple things, the things the Lord Himself wants done."

Sharing an example from her personal life, Sister Aburto spoke of how she always created long lists for herself on the weekends that never managed to get done. But a "major milestone" came in her life when she learned to simplify and focus her efforts on spending time with her family. 

Her advice to the sisters of the Church is: "Just pick two or three things that are realistic and let the other things go. Spend time having fun. Enjoy your family. Do fun things with them."

About the pressures to do more and live up to expectations, Sister Aburto said, "I felt that I was never done. . . . One day I realized that I will never be done. My lists will never be finished. It is impossible. I want to tell every woman what I have learned. You don't have to do it all, and you are never done, and you can be okay with that. You can accept that. Do what you can each day, ask the Lord to fill in the gaps, and then a  new day starts and you begin again. I think that is part of the beauty of being disciples of Jesus Christ. That we are never done, that there is always something else to do, and that there is always room for improvement."

As Sister Eubank and Sister Aburto emphatically shared, "My sisters, you are doing great." But there is always room to refocus, simplify, and make revelation and the grace of our Savior a pivotal part of our lives.

Watch a video broadcast of their BYU Women's Conference address below:

Lead image a screenshot from the video above.
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