I am slowly seeing that acceptance is not a state of passivity or inaction, but rather the starting point of action. For me, and maybe for you, this is HUGE! Trying to change something or make progress toward a goal without accepting the reality of the situation will only lead to frustration and failure. For example, my entire life I have had to watch my weight and as an adolescent I was quite heavy. In order to really change my situation I had to conquer my thoughts of: “Why did this happen to me?”, “I’ll never be able to change the way I look.”, “I could make a change but my family isn’t helping me.”, “If I was taller than everything would be easier.” Obviously the list could go on and on and this stream of thinking can apply to any part of your life that you feel unhappy with; relationships, career success, friendships, and more. Instead I finally chose to accept myself (well kind of) and take responsibility for changing what I could. I never did get taller, but I was able to make drastic changes in my appearance and choices so that today I am much healthier than I was 30 some years ago.
To help you understand:
-approval, endorsement, consent, agreement, confirmation, or condoning every situation.
-hitting your head against a wall of “should’s”, “have-to’s”, “must’s”, or “ought’s” instead of
-sitting back and wishing or hoping something will change or improve.
-labeling everything that happens to you as fair, just, or deserving.
-blaming others, the universe or higher powers for what you perceive as wrong with your life.
-using creativity and enthusiasm to overcome life’s frustrations.
-making a plan and breaking it down into achievable goals.
-eliminating the words “should”, “ought”, “have-to” and “must” from your vocabulary.
-taking personal responsibility for your life and refusing to whine and blame your way out of
-a sign of strength not weakness.
-seeing the incidents in life as something you can handle, not an excuse to give up.
Coming to a place of acceptance can be easy or hard; even knowing the truth I still oscillate between the two. To begin your acceptance journey, start with yourself. Many of life’s lessons come to us in the form of perceived “failures”. We can choose to learn the lesson or we can berate ourselves for our mistakes. Many of us can accept and be supportive of others but apply a more critical eye to our own fallible human ways. Strive to be as understanding of yourself as you are to others.
QUOTES OF THE MONTH
“Acceptance is not submission; it is acknowledgment of the facts of a situation. Then deciding what you’re going to do about it.” ~Kathleen Casey Theisen
“And that’s the way it is.” ~Walter Cronkite
Darla shows people how creativity and personal responsibility can change the world by positively effecting perceptions, attitudes, and relationships. For additional information on Darla’s programs and life coaching or to sign up to receive her Full Plate No Fork Newsletter or email her at Darla@DarlaArni.com.