Things I wish I knew before my mission:
I’ve been asked this question multiple times while serving my mission. Here is some insight, hope it helps!
The Atonement. Christ is with you every step of the way. You are on His errand and you are entitled to His help. Utilize the enabling power of His Atonement.
Talk to everyone. Open your Mouth. Even if you literally just open your mouth, you will feel ridiculous therefore, forcing yourself to say something. The only time you fail at contacting is when you don’t contact anyone at all.
Learn to adapt. Every day is something new. Let go of the unimportant and learn to stretch.
Moroni's promise works. It took me way too long to have a true conviction of that. When you believe in it, your investigators will too.
Eat, breathe, and sleep Preach my Gospel. "Preach my gospel" is my best friend. I can’t get enough of it. It is inspired and helps us be the best missionaries we can be.
Companions are inspired. Think about the billions of people God created and He put you with one specific person. That was not a mistake.
Pray, pray, pray. The most spiritual experiences can come through the power of prayer.
Be creative. There are so many fun ways to share and teach the gospel. Think outside the box.
Submit your ALL. Yep, that means everything, even your image. Your ideal body image goes right out the door. Forget it though. Members will feed you and feed you AND feed you. You might not get the best work outs in, but trust me, don’t focus on it. If you let it go and focus on God, He will take care of you.
IT IS HARD. Physically, mentally, & emotionally. Each day is a roller-coaster, but it is 100% worth it.
Memorize scripture mastery. All those times in seminary when I didn’t think I would need them…Memorize scriptures!
Forget yourself. Every problem, challenge, & frustration happened primarily when I was focused more on myself than others.
Serve your companion.
Repent. I have learned to love to repent. You will be more effective as you have a repentant heart.
Be real. With yourself, investigators, and members. You’re not always going to be 100%, and that is okay. Just because you are a missionary doesn’t mean you aren’t human.
Document & journal every day. Take Pictures! Remember the little moments and adventures. They go by way too fast.
Missionary Library Yes, it takes up a lot of room and feel inconvenient at times (unless you're an iPad mission), but bring it. They are amazing resources.
Companionship Inventory. Use it and don’t be awkward about it. This can be some of the most inspired time of the week.
Lock your heart. Enough said.
Take notes. Write down your inspiration & revelation from meetings. You’ll forget if you don’t.
Charity never EVER fails. Every time, it works! My favorite quote, “Never let a problem to be solved be more important than a person to be loved.” -President Monson
No regrets. My trainer told me that regrets are straight from Satan. It’s true. Don’t listen to him. Strive your hardest each day and the Lord will make up the rest.
God called you to be YOU. He wants you to use your specific talents. You are enough! And if you let Him, God will make you a much better you.
And a few other things...
Prepare for the Uncomfortable. Everyday something uncomfortable happens. Learn to embrace the awkwardness. You all always laugh about it later.
Find joy in the journey! You are not doing missionary work right if you aren’t having fun.
Piano. Remember when your mom and piano teacher told you you’d thank them later? It’s later.
Bring easy, healthy recipes. You are what you eat and you can control it- most of the time. Choose to eat healthy.
The most successful missionaries act out of love, are obedient, and listen to the promptings of the spirit.