Self-acceptance is accepting ourselves, our “good” and “bad”, accepting our past, our present and our future.
A lack of self-acceptance is refusing and rejecting who we are and what we do, denying and repressing our negative thoughts and emotions; all leading to self rejection.
Everyone wants to reinvent certain aspects of their life. We want to change our behavior, our characters, our choices, even our bodies.
We wish we were richer, thinner, healthier, calmer, or more generous. We also long for another job, another partner, another house, another car…
All those feelings, along with these areas in our life, are hidden inside us, buried for a certain time, and this is what makes us disintegrated.
What really matters is the self-awareness that something wrong might be happening, the conscious knowledge of the feelings and emotions we are experiencing. All the decisions that we make in our daily life are either to avoid pain, or gain pleasure. And since we are usually wired to avoid pain, we often end up locking all these negative experiences in our closet in the dark.
We need to go inside our body and mind, dig deep in the search for all the stories that we may have denied for years. At this point, we have two choices: facing them or feeding them. We have to give all our parts the chance to communicate, in order to become a well grounded human being.
“When we deny our stories, they define us. When we own our stories, we get to write a brave new ending.” – Brene Brown
We end up hating and empowering all those things and feelings that we deny. So, instead of adding negative emotions to certain situations and stories, we have to accept them.
Self-acceptance is not about liking or enjoying these “bad” things we have, self-acceptance means accepting those things instead of hating them, and facing them instead of avoiding them.
Negative self-talk, this inner voice inside our head that determines how we perceive every situation, causes avoidance, which leads to suffering.
How to achieve self-acceptance, self-love and the feeling of freedom? Here are some simple tips that will help you:
- Self-acceptance is an inner game technique; The 1ststep for self-acceptance is accepting our lives, our past, our present, and our future. It’s about being engaged in the situation. Acceptance is not about approval of a certain situation or character, it’s about being in peace with what we don’t like and especially those situations that we can’t change or control such as death, loss, health issues…
- Trust that things will get better, that you will be stronger, and learn something from that incident or misfortune … trust that you can repair yourself, because you repeat what you don’t repair; Starting over may seem hard, but don’t we all deserve to rebuild our lives from scratch?
“Instead of saying “I’m damaged, I’m broken”, say “I’m healing, I’m rediscovering myself, I’m starting over” – Horacio Jones.”
- Self-forgiveness is the most difficult yet the most liberating experience; forgiving ourselves for every time we hated our body, our job, our character; forgiving ourselves for every time we were angry, jealous, and weak; forgiving ourselves for not being perfect, for unfavorably judging someone we love; forgiving ourselves for that time when we hated our lives.
Forgiving is a process, it doesn’t happen overnight, and it is very complex. While learning how to forgive ourselves, we are giving our body and mind the chance to cut off all the negative emotions including shame and guilt and replacing them with gratitude, love and empathy for oneself.
Don’t we deserve forgiveness and love? …. Acceptance is freedom.
By: Joyce Abdallah.