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What is self-acceptance?

Posted by What's Not 2 Love on

Do you accept yourself?

A lack of self-acceptance can affect your confidence and prevent you from reaching your full potential. It can really hold you back in every area of your life. 

People with high self-acceptance tend to be more resilient to criticism and understand that it’s okay to accept themselves for what and who they are.

Self-acceptance means accepting yourself and all your personality traits exactly as they are. You accept them no matter what. Whether they are positive or negative. This includes your physical and mental attributes too!

It's easier said than done, but self-acceptance means recognising that your value goes beyond your personal attributes and actions.

To achieve self-acceptance, you must learn to accept the parts of yourself you consider negative or undesirable. You must also learn to acknowledge and celebrate your positive qualities and achievements (of which there will be many!)

Most of us reject the parts of ourselves we consider unacceptable. We would rather change them than accept them, which can lead to sensitivity and anxiety. However, being aware of our weaknesses without having any emotional attachment to them can be liberating! Because having weaknesses and not fitting in with societal perfection is NORMAL!

By learning to accept yourself you will be:

  1.  More able to control your emotions
  2.  More able to forgive yourself
  3.  More confident
  4.  More capable of self-compassion
  5.  And more more able to be yourself!

But how do you become self-accepting? We've been browsing and have come across some fabulous little exercises you can do to help increase your self-acceptance.

  • Be grateful - Every day, write down 5 things you're grateful for. Whether it be big or small, if you look hard enough, they'll be there! So when the day takes a turn and you find yourself thinking negatively, think about your 5 things and remind yourself that there are positive things in your life. Look for silver linings and try and see the positives in all situations. Read more about being grateful here.
  • Reframe your negative thoughts - Write down your negative thoughts about yourself and challenge yourself to rewrite them with a positive spin. For example: “I am a good person, but I’m only human, so I sometimes make mistakes.” Learn more about positive self talk here.
  • Reassess the people you spend time with - Think about the way they treat you, speak to you and make you feel. Is it mostly positive or negative? If negative, do you have to spend so much time with them? Can you cut down the time you're with them, or even remove them from your life altogether? No-one needs to spoken to or treated negatively. It's entirely unnecessary (even if you've got yourself into a hole of believing that you deserve it. GET OUT! YOU DON'T DESERVE IT!).
  • Forgive yourself - Forgiveness for past mistakes and regrets is an essential step toward self-acceptance. Now, this is a tough one. But potentially one of the most important! Why not give this a go:
Think of a situation, action, or mistake for which you would like to forgive yourself. Identify any judgments of yourself relating to that situation, and write them down. For example, you might write, “I shouldn’t have done X. I’m so stupid.”
Next, forgive yourself for that belief. Write down something like: “I forgive myself for believing I’m stupid for that. The truth is…” and fill in the blank.
Think about what a compassionate friend might say to you. It could be something like, “I was stressed because…” or “I was hurting and made a bad decision.”
Ask yourself the following questions.......
1. Does this bad situation (mistake, failure, rejection, criticism) take away my good qualities?
2. Does it make sense to conclude that “I am totally hopeless” because of one or more negative things that have happened?
The answer to both is NO!
We think you get the idea of what we're trying to say. You are beautiful, you are interesting, you are allowed to be whoever you are without question. Yes, you may make mistakes, but that's okay too. That makes you even more beautiful, interesting and YOU!
Let us leave you with some additional points to ponder over.....
  • I can accept myself whether I win, lose, or draw.
  • I would  be better to not define myself entirely by my behaviour, by others’ opinions, or by anything else under the sun.
  • I can be myself without trying to prove anything.
  • I am not a fool for acting foolishly. If I were a fool, I could never learn from my mistakes.
  • I can neither prove myself to be a good nor a bad person. The wisest thing I can do is simply to accept myself.
  • Accepting myself as being human is better than trying to prove myself superhuman or rating myself as subhuman.
  • I can itemise my weaknesses, disadvantages, and failures without judging or defining myself by them.
  • I can acknowledge my mistakes and hold myself accountable for making them -but without berating myself for creating them.



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