What Is Self-Acceptance? How You Can Practice Today
When was the last time you looked in the mirror and said, “I love you.”? It may sound a little silly, but this is a powerful exercise to do. When saying this, you should really feel it. That swelling up of love that we feel when we think of our family and friends should be cast upon ourselves as well. Now, getting there is hard. It’s an ongoing journey that will last a lifetime. Today we want to talk about self-acceptance and how you can begin to practice it.
What Is Self-Acceptance?
The name says it all. Self-acceptance is the art of accepting you, as you are, in this moment, and genuinely meaning it. If you are thinking, “Well, I am nice, I have pretty eyes, and I am a good friend—but…” Then that is not self-acceptance. Self-acceptance encapsulates the ‘buts’ as well. Meaning, you even accept the attributes about yourself that are less than ideal. The very definition from Merriam Webster says, ” [Self-acceptance is] the act or state of accepting oneself: the act or state of understanding and recognizing one’s own abilities and limitations.”
Recognizing Strengths And Weaknesses
Think of self-acceptance like taking inventory. It requires you to acknowledge your weaknesses, accepting them as they are, but knowing that you can change them. You can draw a parallel to a meditative practice. In meditation, you do not want to avoid thinking during your session, but you do want to take note of thoughts and recognize them as they pass by. Here is an excellent video on noting during meditation. Similarly, it takes identifying and understanding both your strengths and weaknesses to grow and become your fullest self.
A Self-Acceptance Exercise For You
For a little practice, take out a piece of paper and write down the following:
- How are you feeling right now?
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- What do you need to forgive yourself for?
- How can you make a difference for someone else today?
On the path to kindness, it is essential to start with you. When you treat yourself with grace and forgiveness, it will be easier to give that to others. Acceptance is a pillar of happiness overall according to research done by the University of Hertfordshire. One sentiment from their article is especially powerful:
“Happiness is more than just a feeling; it is something we can all practise on a daily basis. But people are better at some ‘happy habits’ than others. In fact, the one habit that corresponds most closely with us being satisfied with our lives overall — self-acceptance — is often the one we practise least.”
How Can You Start Practicing Self-Acceptance Today?
Our steps to self-acceptance might all look a little different. You can start with the exercise above. That will help you to get into the mindset of acceptance. Think about adding a practice like meditation and yoga into your life as well. These practices ask us to bring awareness to our bodies and minds. When we do that, we work towards accepting the beauty within us and hush the nay-sayer in our minds. If you hear a negative thought about yourself begin to creep up in your mind, replace it with something positive. Here is an example:
“I am so bad at running.” —> “I have the opportunity to become a better runner.”
By rewiring how you process negative thoughts, you can work towards a more positive outlook overall and work toward radical self-acceptance.
If you are looking for ways to practice self-care, self-acceptance, meditation, or the like—join us on iChuze Fitness. Here, we have created workouts, self-care sessions, and the opportunity to practice kindness with our Mind, Body, and Heart sections. You can take this app with you wherever you go and even use it to workout and focus inward at any of our locations. We cannot wait to welcome you to the Chuze Family.