It’s funny how easy it is to accept certain aspects of ourselves, but not others. Like, I’ve learned to accept living with stage IV cancer, while also being fully committed to taking care of myself. But, I don’t always accept my wrinkles or my temper—even when it reminds me to stand up for myself.
The other morning, I was sitting by the fire and feeling like a phony. I thought back to all the seemingly wise things I had said about acceptance during my SuperSoul Sessions talk for Oprah—who personally introduced me. No pressure.
I talked about how acceptance isn’t about giving up or amputating our ambition—it’s about owning our self-worth and loving ourselves, no matter what. No matter who comes and goes and how life unfolds. It’s about never abandoning ourselves, especially in our times of need. Acceptance doesn’t mean that we stop growing, it means that we seek from a place of wholeness (knowing that we’re already enough), rather than a place of lack.
So you see, acceptance isn’t about settling, it’s about owning your power—even when you feel powerless.
But, back to the fireside chat with myself…
Internal voice: “For someone who yammers on about the power of accepting yourself, you’re constantly future tripping and planning all the ways you must improve yourself. It’s exhausting! What if you really accepted yourself? Like, ALL of yourself and gave me a fucking break? I tell ya what lady, 2017 would be way more enjoyable. Think on it!”.
Wow. Ok, then. She has spoken. Don’t you just love it when you get messages from your soul? I do, even when they’re hard to stomach. I had no idea I was so annoying, but I’m glad I was honest with myself.
The truth is we can’t be our best selves all the time. We’re flawed (thank God), we’re human and life is our spiritual classroom—messy, magical, uncertain, beautiful, tragic life. So perhaps, it’s best to stop contorting ourselves into neat little boxes, take the pressure off and just relax a bit.
What if you stop trying to be better and just be you—the real, foxy you? Still, drink your green juice but don’t be so obsessed about it that you miss your joy. Still, seek but don’t forget what’s already healthy and healed about you.
As I thought about this, my shoulders dropped a few inches. I felt myself get off my own back.
If I could accept myself (and others) more rather than consistently rejecting myself in my quest to be better, life would be so much sweeter. Plus, when we’re honest about where we are right now, today, (no matter how dark it may feel) it’s easier to get to where we hope to be tomorrow.
So, as we saunter into 2017, here are a few more thoughts on acceptance. They may be worth pondering. If not, I accept that.
How to Accept Yourself No Matter What
1. Accept that you’re uniquely imperfect, but don’t shame yourself.
2. Accept that you don’t love everyone, but don’t be mean.
3. Accept that your weight may fluctuate, but your worth never does.
4. Accept your anger, but take responsibility when it’s misdirected or gets too hot.
5. Accept that forgiveness is possible, but forgetting isn’t—and that’s called survival.
6. Accept that you will make mistakes. If you didn’t, you’d stop growing.
7. Accept that it’s impossible to be present all the time (unless you’re Eckhart Tolle), but the present moment is always there for you.
8. Accept that you will need to clean up your messes, but that doesn’t mean you’re a mess.
9. Accept that you can’t please everyone. You will be judged so just live your life. People who judge are generally insecure.
10. Accept good advice, but remember that your opinion about your life is the only opinion that truly matters.
11. Accept that you won’t live forever. In fact, it may be shorter than you think, so live more right now. Waiting is a waste.