Acceptance is something that is coming up a lot for me lately.
What a toughey.
It is funny though, because most of the time, the things we struggle with are most often the place where our biggest lessons lie dormant, waiting to be breathed to life.
Think about that for a moment… What are you struggling with? Do you hate it? Resist it? Want to ignore it? Chances are that’s a sure indication that you have something to face and a lesson to learn.
You may be confused or unsure how to accept something (or someone). I know I have been feeling defeated in that sense a lot lately. I go back and forth between two extremes. In one extreme moment I feel wronged, shit on and wanting to change them and the situation… and in the next moment, I am wanting to just release it all, let it go and be peace.
How do we get there? To that point of acceptance? For most of us average folks, it’s a process. We can’t just take a deep breath, declare “it is what it is,” accept it, while moving on in life gracefully and peacefully.
(Although, if that’s your experience, high five).
Most of us, though? Most of us struggle with it a bit.
In my experience, I do not rock the acceptance card right away. My tendency is to want to control.
As in, I want to have things go in a way that I am comfortable with, in a timeline that works for me, ending with the results that make me feel at ease.
Sorry, people in my life.
But with that realization, I have learnt a lot about myself, about acceptance and how it all unfolds. It is this:
Acceptance might not happen in one moment. It’s most likely process. A long process. It might take days, weeks, months. It might take hurt and frustration. It might take long, reflective talks with friends or therapists. It might take tears and repetative “whys.” It might take pizza and wine, long strolls in nature, self help books, meditation or drawn out country back road drives with loud country music.
It might even take a combination of all of these.
Isn’t life FUN? LOL (… by the way, I am not LOL-ing…)
There is no recipe for how to get there.
What is important though, is that you entertain the idea of GETTING there. What is important, is that you want to welcome acceptance into your world, into your relationships and into any area of life that you’re feeling the need to control, change or dominate. If you are willing, the way will appear.
I have also learnt that accepting a situation that I do not love, or even like, means that I have to be willing to see things from a point of view that is not my own.
This can be tricky.
It’s almost like taking on the role of a witness. You just watch from the outside, but aren’t directly tied emotionally or physically to the situation. Rather, you just look in at it.
As I watch from there, I can usually slow my thoughts and emotions down enough to say something like, “this is their lesson. This is their choice. There is nothing wrong here. This has nothing to do with me. It is their path to growth, lessons learnt, healing and expansion. Even if this is not how I would have things go, even if it looks and feels WRONG or painful for me, I can be willing to honor that it is not my choice or in my realm of power to have things go any other way. The more I fight that, the unhappier I will be. The more I relax, let go and accept that this IS what is, the more peaceful and happy I will be. I must trust that I am serving as an important part of their lesson.”
As well, it is imperative to point out and know that while practicing acceptance you don’t just drop all your standards, walls and barriers. You don’t just lay down to be walked all over and emotionally beat on, simply because you’ve chosen to “accept what is.”
When you accept someone, it does not mean that you have to stick around and accept abuse or toxicity. You can accept someone as they are and accept what is, all while leaving the relationship and the close proximity, for your own souls health and safety.
Even if the person isn’t physically dangerous, you still have permission to accept them or the situation while distancing yourself to a new space, for your own well-being.
Acceptance is a part of any spiritual path. If you want to learn unconditional love for yourself or others, learning to practice acceptance will surely show up in your life.
Isn’t that the way life works its wonderful magic?
You’re damn right it is.
What you need/want to learn will show up again and again, until you learn it and live it authentically.
Life will gently guide you to whatever edge you dread the most and while you stand there uncomfortably, it will ask you to either jump into a new magical level of living, or it will allow you stay there and be unhappy, “safe” and the same.
I say go for the jump. Practice acceptance and all the other goodies and lessons that are tied to it… anything that is hard, uncomfortable and scary.
Jump… the net will appear.
Plus, I’ve got your back. Hell, I’ll even jump with you.