Acceptance seems to be one of the most misunderstood concepts in the whole personal development field. Still, I’m convinced that acceptance is a fundamental prerequisite to grow as a human being.
Because without accepting your current reality and yourself, real growth is almost impossible. And the reason for that is that you wouldn’t be aligned with the truth and would operate on a inaccurate basis, which can only lead to inaccurate results.
So let’s see how you can accept your current reality and align yourself with the truth of what is…
What Does Acceptance Mean?
Acceptance of reality is really saying yes to what is. It is saying yes and becoming ok with the current situation. It doesn’t mean you have to like it as it is, but you have to accept it and recognize it as it is. Denial and ignorance is not helping and would keep you away from effective change. So it also means recognizing your reality correctly. And in its essence, acceptance is alignment with truth.
Now, why is that important?
As long as you are not aligned with truth you are operating on a wrong perception of reality. That means you are in denial of how your reality is, knowingly or unknowingly. It is like trying to find a house in a city while using a map of another city. You simply can’t get to where you want to be this way.
Why is it so Hard to Accept?
This can happen faster than you might think, because denial is a defense mechanism of your mind, trying to protect you from what could be an unpleasant realization.
The obvious reason is that by living in denial you can pretent that everything is ok, which will take you into dream world where you have to come back from anyway soon or later. So you avoid negative emotions by not facing your reality. It’s easier to look away and pretent everything is fine… for awhile.
The Truth Will Set You Free
Still, only when you tell yourself the truth you are ready to make progress in your life. Yes, it may feel a little uncomfortable, but it is still the only way to go. Or telling yourself the truth will instantly be a very liberating experience. However, after a first and short emotional reaction, a new door will be opened through which you can go only then.
Also, when you are not accepting your situation, you are somehow struggling with how the present moment looks like. This means that you are fighting a fight that you can’t win. The present moment is as it is. You can only change what lays ahead, but not what lead you to the current situation.
And there are always 3 ways to accept and then change your situation:
1. Reinterpret it in your mind
2. Do something to change it
3. Leave it
After accepting your current reality, you are powerfully aligned with the truth. So accept the situation now and from there move forward!
What Acceptance is Not
Accepting your reality in this sense does not mean that you can’t change your reality. It is not helplessness. On the contrary and as said before, only if you have accepted your situation you can move past it. Now a new way, new resources and opportunities are opening up, if you want to create a different reality.
Also and very important, by accepting a situation, do not create your identity (self-image) out of this situation. In other words: if you’re accepting a reality that is not what you want, do not say to yourself: “I accept myself, I am just so-and-so.” This is wrong because all that would do is pull you down. Instead, just realize that the current situation is as it is and then define where you want to take it. There is never an identity involved.
How to Accept Your Current Reality
I use the following 4 step process to accept and connect myself with the truth and then to start change into the direction I want:
- Take the courage and start a process of self-reflection to come to the truth of your current situation.
- Accept the truth of the situation.
- Do not judge the situation or yourself. Instead know that although it may feel unpleasant for the moment, by accepting reality as it is you are doing the right thing.
- Then define where you want the situation to change to. Maybe set it as a goal. See it as a vision of your ideal life for yourself.