Friday, August 11, 2017

Practice Self-Acceptance

Self-acceptance is very important.  I didn't realize how much so until I was an adult.  I had never accepted myself fully throughout childhood.  I had never fully accepted my life with spina bifida and the health issues that came with it.  I got good at self-care, but that didn't mean I had made my peace with it.  I hated it.  I was very self-conscious, shy, and insecure.  I didn't appreciate the fact that being unique was a good thing.  I didn't appreciate my talents and strengths. 


So, how can you practice self-acceptance, you may be asking.  Here are some of the ways:

  • Avoid judging or criticizing yourself.  Be as good as you can be.  Everyone makes mistakes.  Don't beat yourself up about it.  
  • Be your own friend.  Remember that your friends wouldn't say hurtful things to you, so neither should you.
  • Accept your body as it is.  This doesn't mean to let yourself go, but to accept what is, and not freak out or punish yourself for not being "perfect." Flaws are inevitable.  Work on improving yourself over time without judgment. 
  • Live a healthy lifestyle.  Eat properly, exercise regularly, and get plenty of sleep.  Your body knows what it needs.  Listen to it.
  • Do what makes you laugh.  Do what makes your heart sing.  Wear what you want.  Wear your hair the way you want.  Be your best self.  Be someone you'd love to hang out with, because, let's face it, you are who you hang out with ALL the time.
  • Make a point to challenge feelings of self-blame, -doubt, and -shame.  
  • Celebrate your strengths, talents, abilities, and uniqueness.
  • Take notice of the types of people you hang out with.  Are these healthy relationships?  Are these people good to you?  Do they have your back?  Or are they always finding fault or trying to drag you into activities you don't feel comfortable doing?
  • Surround yourself with positive people.  Get yourself a strong support system you can rely on.  Stick with people who believe in you.
  • Forgive yourself.  Everyone makes mistakes.  Mourn those mistakes and move on.
  • Tell that inner critic to hit the road.  It doesn't serve you in the least to listen to that negative voice.  It's not wise.  It's not protecting you.  It's only helping to kill your self-acceptance.  Ditch it.
  • Let go of those things; those circumstances you can't control and concentrate on those that you can control.
Do you do any of these things?  I do, yes.  Some.  Do you accept yourself as you are?  Yes, I do, now, I'm happy to say.  Of course, everyone has their off days, but make a point to practice self-acceptance every day and you'll find it easier as time passes.  

Can you think of anything else that I've missed?  Let me know in the comments.  Have a great weekend!  

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