These are not only steps toward finding self acceptance, but will eventually become habits to help you keep it up. The journey toward self acceptance is not just a long road, it is unending. Life isn’t static. You are always changing, and so will your feelings about yourself. You will need to have habits in place to help yourself continue to find self acceptance.
So, what are some steps you can take on this journey? I’ve come up with five to discuss with you today.
1) Forgive yourself
Any past mistakes you have made, forgive yourself. No matter how big or small. You did your best, at the time, with what you knew. Now you know better, so you can do better, but you need to move on from the past.
It does you no good to dwell on those past mistakes. It changes nothing. All you can do now is move forward knowing better.
2) Work on fighting negative thoughts
That inner critic you hear doesn’t speak the truth. If the thoughts you hear aren’t something you would say to a close friend, disregard them. They aren’t helpful, they’re just unwanted, harsh judgment, and you don’t benefit from it.
The best way I’ve found to counteract negative thoughts, is to immediately tell myself, “No. That isn’t true,” and then correct the thought. For example, if I think, “No one likes you. No one really wants to be your friend.” I right away stop myself, sometimes with an actual, “Stop it,” and think, “Of course that’s not true. You know you have people who would be there for you if you called. You know you have people who enjoy spending time with you.”
It feels really awkward and weird at first, but with repetition it feels more natural and becomes automatic. One day, you will suddenly realize you are having fewer negative thoughts overall.
3) Stop comparing yourself to anyone
Seriously, anyone. You are a unique individual. No one on Earth has the same life experience as you. Think on how amazing that is!
No one has gone through the exact same things. No one is at the exact same place in their life. There is just no comparison to make.
Accept your life as the singular experience that it is, and see it as one-of-a-kind, to be appreciated with all its ups and downs.
4) Accept your flaws
Your flaws are part of the human experience. They are part of what makes you unique. It isn’t only your gifts and positive qualities that contribute to your uniqueness. Your faults really do add to who you are as a person. Sometimes they are what draw people to you and even endear you to them. They are also opportunities to grow and learn. You may or may not be able to change what you perceive to be a flaw, so accept your flaws, because they make you who you are, and you are an amazing, distinctive individual.
5) Create a support system
Surround yourself with people who support you and accept you as you are. Find people who believe in you and are uplifting to be around.
If there are people in your life who drag you down, reinforce your negative self talk, or criticize you, ask yourself why you allow it. You deserve better. Distance yourself from such people so they can’t reinforce your negative thoughts.
There is so much more to finding self acceptance, but this list will get you started in the journey. If you found this helpful, please feel free to share it with your friends on Facebook, etc., and be sure to subscribe so you can easily join me back here for more tips and helpful posts.
(Edit: I have since written this post which contains 4 more steps you can take toward self acceptance.)