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Becoming More: Three Ways to Overcome Discontentment

Our God-given desires to improve, learn, and grow are deeper than any wish we may have to “keep up.” How will you act in faith to become more?

Often, we have the tendency to feel that we need to be more—that there is a gap between who we are now and who we want to be. Academically, we want to be accepted to the best universities and achieve the highest grades. Socially, we want to be invited to all the events, go on all the dates, and have a high number of followers on all of our social media platforms. Professionally, we want to have well-paying and personally fulfilling jobs. Throughout our lives, we are constantly seeking success. Why? 

In her general conference talk “Divine Discontent,” Sister Michelle D. Craig teaches, “We yearn for greater personal capacity. We have these feelings because we are daughters and sons of God, born with the Light of Christ yet living in a fallen world.” She calls these feelings “divine discontent.”

"We yearn for greater personal capacity. We have these feelings because we are sons and daughters of God, born with the Light of Christ yet living in a fallen world." –Michelle D. Craig

Photo by Ivana Cajina

Sometimes, though, our feelings of discontentment leave us feeling less divine and more incapable. It is easy to feel that we will never be enough—to collapse on ourselves in pity and frustration. If our desire for greater capacity is indeed divinely given, how do we avoid this trap of inaction? 

Sister Craig teaches that there are three ways to keep our discontent divine and prevent it from becoming destructive: act in faith, do good, and rely on grace. Acting in faith is the first step. Like the Book of Mormon prophet Nephi, we must “go and do” when we seek direction from God, like reaching out to that friend that you haven’t talked to in years, or quitting that job for a new (albeit riskier) opportunity. Second, serving others not only helps us do good in this world, but also helps us to turn outward and focus less on ourselves Finally, in order to become more than we are now, we must rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ. He is the one who can refine our desires, multiply our efforts, and make us more than we knew we could be. When we follow this pattern, we will be able to avoid destructive discontent and instead focus our efforts on taking ourselves from where we are to where we want to be.

Find more on how to make your discontent divine by reading “Divine Discontent” by Sister Michelle D. Craig. 

Source: General Conference 

—Emma Saavedra, Latter-day Saint Insights

FEATURE IMAGE BY JACOB DYER

Find more insights

To learn more about how to move forward through divine discontent, read “Becoming a Disciple” by Elder Neal A. Maxwell 

Take a look at Oakli Van Meter’s article “How to Prioritize and Accomplish What Matters Most” for three tips on how to make the most of your time. 

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