Accepting Yourself in Today’s World

Joseph Meyer

Recently I had the pleasure to watch Rocketman the bio pic of Sir Elton John and I must say I quite impressed with his life and the impact he has made with his music and just his humanity throughout the world. Now mind you I am not sure how accurate this story to the real life of Elton John and frankly it shouldn’t matter, it was a great film in my opinion. What I loved was the struggles Elton had with his family and how he was able to overcome those incredible difficulties.

Family does truly make a difference in our abilities to sometimes succeed in life and be prepared for a bright future. But many in life don’t experience a solid family life such as two parents in the household who are devoted to raising well balance kids. Some of you may be saying well my mom or dad were single parents and they did great and I say I am one of those who was always raised with my single mom who did an incredible feat with raising my sister and I on pennies, but It could have been better.

For those who have read my blogs you will know that I am a difficult relationship with my grandfather in which I lived with along with my mom and sister. My grandfather who I believe never genuinely loved me put me down for most of young life and most of adult life. I was never good enough and he made sure to remind me each day, but in survival my mother made a choice to keep us afloat so I don’t fault her for that.

Feeling acceptance is so key to our development in this life, not only be accepted by others but accepting yourself as is. What brings this thought to mind is that recently I had a young co-worker graduating college, starting out her life in the most wonderful way. A young women who I see as intelligent and hardworking and has the world in her hands. There is a hint of jealously in my tone because I look back in my own life and I ask myself what have I truly done in my life to be impressed about.

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Yes I am a husband and father but I look back at my life and wish I could be a better provider, but One the reasons I feel I have failed is in my career. Now I am not saying my jobs that I have taken are bad or the companies I have work for are bad, actually they are decent, but it could have been better. Right now students are graduating High school and college starting major chapters in their life.

I think back when I was graduating high school as it was exciting, the future looked bright I was going to college and ready to begin my life. I was ready until early on I started to fail miserably being in college away from home, homesick and not prepared for college, so I made the choice to go back home with no resistance from family.

A choice I regret, but I know back then I was not ready and I didn’t have the confidence and the self-acceptance to push myself. This was something that affected my life until today and I don’t want anyone’s life to be affected in that way. I encourage those who struggle with this to know you are not alone, you are special just the way you are.

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One of the struggles so many deal with is comparison as in comparing yourself to others life path as I have done so much in my life. When I look at someone my age, my level of education for example and they go off to be successful while I feel stuck in neutral it hurts me. Many others may feel this way like when will I move into gear and never do at times, it may be because you have never truly accepted yourself.

Being in my forty’s now, life has passed me by pretty quickly and it continues to keep going unrelenting and unstopping, so what can one do to overcome this, here are some ways.

  1. Set an Intention

Set the intention to acknowledge that self-loathing simply doesn’t lead to a satisfying life, it actually leads you nowhere. If you intention in life is to have self-acceptance which it should be we will find ways to appreciate who we are and our strengths. It starts with good thoughts and creating a chain reaction to continue those positive thoughts, its that important.

  1. Celebrate your Strengths

We all have strengths no matter if you can’t see them right away, but its important to recognize what those are. Hone in on those strengths and abilities by writing them down helps put those strengths in black and white. If you are having a tough time coming up with your list, name one strength each day. Start with something basic like “I’m a kind person” to start.

  1. Consider the people around you

What kinds of people do you surround yourself with?  Those people in your life make all the difference as mention in my personal example. Those who bring you down are not the people you need in your life even if they are family. Create those boundaries even if it means cutting those out of your life and see you blossom like never before.

  1. Forgive yourself

We tend to be our worst critics preventing us from self-acceptance. Forgive yourself and move on, it’s as simple as that. It’s important to learn from mistakes, make efforts to grow and accept you can’t change the past.

You make your decision best for you at the time, but I won’t lie it would be nice to have a time machine to go back and correct those choices at that time maybe our lives would be different then today.

  1. Shush your inner critic

The inner critic can be the most powerful voice for good and the bad. We all have that voice but many will push the inner voice aside, some listen constantly like I do.  It’s important to know that inner critic is not always helpful in your quest for self-acceptance but still valuable being self-aware.

  1. Grieve the loss of unrealized dreams

Many of problems of self-acceptance come from our inability to reconcile who we are as compared with the idealized dreams of our youth.  Maybe you dreamed of becoming a doctor or Lawyer but instead ended up in business and think about it constantly. I do that to this day, I think what if I had stayed in my first college and finished, what if I joined the military, What If, What IF’s constantly if my head, but I realize that doing that does more harm then good.

  1. Be kind to yourself

Many people are hesitant to show even a shred of self-kindness because they se it as selfish or undeserved. By the keys to self-compassion is to understand that weaknesses are part of the human experience. Coming to accept who you are involves loving yourself because of your flaws, not in spite of them.

Your Journey is Your own, Make it Count!

Realizing you have an issue of self-acceptance is half the battle, but if you look at yourself in the mirror and see that your truly can’t accept yourself, then you have work to do. Going back to the film Rocketman Elton John struggled to accept who he was as he felt he always had to hide his sexuality, his fashion sense, his delicateness as people in his life told them those feeling are bad such as his mother and father. Accept yourself, your quirks, differences, strengths and weakness and embrace them right now.

Our lively hood depends on accepting ourselves and because we have a long life to live why live in agony over those feelings, its not fair yourself as you deserve the best. I encourage to look within but if that’s hard at first look to those who have fought hard to get where they are today like Sir Elton John accepting himself and never looking back.

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