How to Get the Acceptance You Need
If you could bottle and sell acceptance you’d be a quadrillionaire! I know I’d have bought a dozen back in the day when there wasn’t a thing I wouldn’t do to feel approved of.
I can’t even begin to tell you all the things I did to try to earn love, acceptance, and approval. I was a master of changing who I was and what I wanted if I thought it would make someone like (love) me more. But I soon learned that it didn’t matter what I did, I couldn’t win.
When we hang our hopes on gaining acceptance/approval from the outside world, from people, from jobs, roles or material possessions, we set ourselves up to be disappointed. We can’t win at this game. The external world changes its criteria (like fashion trends), it won’t be clear (until later), it’s self-centered (because it also feels unloved and not okay). It’s fickle, uncertain and shifting, not because it’s bad, but because it’s just as confused about how to feel good enough as you are.
However, within you, there is a pearl of voiceless wisdom that knows the truth about you. You are and always have been lovable, exactly as you were designed. Nothing has changed except the added layers of confusion you’ve acquired since birth. You don’t feel accepted because deep down you believe you’re unacceptable. You secretly believe something is wrong or needs to be fixed.
These are temporary, yet habitual ways of thinking we engage in. We must learn to see our negative thoughts more clearly so we can challenge their power over us. Working with our thought patterns over time is how we develop self-acceptance. It isn’t easy (or everyone would be doing it) but it is the only way to find the acceptance you want and need.
I’m not saying self-acceptance is all there is or all we need as human beings. I’m not saying we don’t need others to accept us as well, but often we harbor thoughts that deflect and derail others’ attempts to love and accept us. If we don’t recognize them we’ll go on feeling unloved and unlovable our whole lives. You can’t feel the acceptance of others when you don’t love and accept yourself. It’s a fact: you can’t believe something is true when you already believe that it’s not.
When your core belief is I’m unacceptable, no amount of external assurance will change that thought…you must change it yourself.
How do you know if that’s a core belief? When you struggle to feel accepted and loved. If you’re reading this, you’re probably struggling.
Your lifelong commitment to self-acceptance is the most powerful, impactful thing you could ever do with your life. Learning to accept your core nature as good is the basis for all love in every context because if you can accept your basic goodness, you’ll teach yourself to acknowledge the core truth of others even when they aren’t demonstrating that now.
Pema Chodron in her book, Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change reminds us, “When you come from the view that you’re fundamentally good rather than fundamentally flawed, as you see yourself speak or act out, as you see yourself repress, you will have a growing understanding that you’re not a bad person who needs to shape up but a good person with temporary, malleable habits that are causing you a lot of suffering. And then, in that spirit, you can become very familiar with these temporary but strongly embedded habits.”
Every day, take just ten minutes to acknowledge and accept the core goodness of your being so you can then recognize what negative thinking is being added by circumstance. What you think is not who you are, and it can be changed with a new thought. Self-acceptance involves adopting a new mindset: “I am inherently good. I may be struggling with X, Y, and Z, but I’m working on them to the best of my ability. Every day, I’m letting go of fear and control. I’m drawing closer to who I really am.”
Download our Free Empowerment Contract for an entire list of New Thoughts for Self-Acceptance.
We deal with ourselves in habitual ways, with either self-acceptance or self-loathing. The latter isn’t cool. It isn’t wise to admit, “I don’t love myself” and do nothing about that. It’s destructive and toxic to the rest of the world because it’s also how you treat other people. We’re all connected through our thoughts, feelings, and actions. In this human experience we’re all up to, our souls are either free and open or gunked up with the shit of self-loathing, like an engine leaking oil that sputters out, accumulates, and burns onto its surface making it black and goo-ey.
In order to experience the beauty that is our Soul, we must eliminate non-acceptance. When asked how he created the perfect image of a man in his statue, “David,” Michelangelo remarked, “I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.” The statue of David was already in that piece of marble and he only chipped away everything that wasn’t David. And we can do the same, bit by bit we can free ourselves from the cage of negative thinking that says we’re not enough.
The habits you choose for yourself matter in the grand scheme of things more than you think. Self-acceptance is a noble act. It is revolutionary. It sets you up to be your own person, to live your authentic purpose here. When you accept yourself you can’t be manipulated or coerced into believing that you must follow or adhere to anything not YOU. You become real and you begin the gentle art of allowing others to be real as well.
If you want to embrace this commitment but you’re unsure of where to begin or how to sustain it, consider a couple of months of Empowerment Coaching. Let me help you weed out the negative self-talk from the truth. Contact me for a free half-hour consultation!
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Have a beautiful day!!