Tag Archives: acceptance

Embracing Radical Self-Acceptance


You are beautiful.png

One of my favorite DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy) concepts is Radical Acceptance. It speaks to accepting something as it is, right now. Radical Acceptance reminds me of the title of an old movie ‘The Good, The Bad, The Ugly.”  It’s about letting go, not fighting against what is, and allowing things to be as they are.

Self-acceptance is like that. Letting go of shame, judgement, and self-doubt and embracing tolerance, trust, and forgiveness is the work of self-acceptance. It is recognizing that I cannot do everything or be everything to every person around me. It is allowing myself to live in the moment and know that I am doing the best that I am able right now.

Celebrate You

Acknowledging your strengths balances out your perceived flaws. For example, I can relish my creativity and still recognize that I am not gifted in other areas. GPS maps were made for myself and others who are perpetually directionally challenged. Create your own list of your strengths, skills and character traits and begin to celebrate how these shape your life.

Turn Off Your Inner Critic

We all have a running soundtrack in our heads. The inner critic has absorbed every negative thing that has been said to us or about us. At any time, the inner critic can pull up words or images from years ago to “prove” that we are not enough. Prepare yourself with your own arsenal of positive self-talk starting with your list of strengths. Use affirmations to center yourself and stay in the moment.

Surround Yourself With Love and Acceptance

Take an inventory of the people in your inner circle. Who do you spend the most time with? Does your support system include people who love and accept you? Who are the most loving and kind people you know? Reach out to these people and strengthen those relationships.

Affirm Yourself

I am wholly wonderful. I do not have to be perfect for others to love me or to love myself. I accept myself as I am now, as I was yesterday, and as I will be tomorrow. I acknowledge my imperfections and am thankful for the journey I am on as I seek to love, trust, and accept myself more deeply each day.


Note: This post is part of the 2017 Kindness Challenge.


Creating a Culture of Wellness: Emotional Wellness (Part 1)



Wellness is a holistic way of managing life. When health permeates every part of the human experience, wellness is present. The National Wellness Institute (www.nationalwellness.org) identifies six dimensions of wellness including:

  • Emotional
  • Occupational
  • Physical
  • Social
  • Intellectual
  • Spiritual

As we move into this new year and look forward to what will unfold for us, focusing on creating a culture of wellness will enrich our lives in 2017. Over the next several weeks, we will explore each of the dimensions of wellness, beginning with our emotions.

Developing Emotional Wellness

No matter how mature or “together” we appear to the world, each of us has the ability to improve our emotional intelligence.

  1. Set and maintain clear boundaries

The foundation of emotional wellness consists of setting clear boundaries. It is easy to agree to take on projects, join committees or do favors for others without thinking through the impact of the commitment on your time and energy.

Practice saying yes only to requests that you want to engage in and are willing to participate in. A firm but polite “no” will be accepted by most people without question.

  1. Know your emotions

Take time to identify the emotions behind your response. When you are tempted to react in anger, check to see if the anger is fueled by fear or sadness. When you recognize the underlying emotion, it is easier to advocate for yourself and get your needs met in a healthy manner.

Tend to the root of the emotions. Take time to journal, exercise, garden or spend time with caring people. Nurture yourself.

  1. Advocate for your needs

Sometimes you need a break or a helping hand. Asking for support when necessary reduces stress and helps to reduce emotional roller coasters. Ask early, ask often.

  1. Practice Radical Acceptance

Sometimes situations are beyond the scope of our control. Acceptance doesn’t mean approval or giving in It is recognition of the facts of a situation. We can rail against the rain and wind, but the storm will continue because it is out of our control. Acceptance is choosing not to fight the storm and invite more suffering into our lives.

  1. Resolve trauma history

If you have a history of trauma or abuse, find a qualified mental health practitioner to support you in breaking down the barriers to emotional health. Learn to tell your story, acknowledging painful times and joyous times.

  1. Give yourself grace

Healing, like life, does not progress in a neat orderly fashion. We move forward and make progress only to be tripped up and lose ground. If today was not your best day, be gentle with yourself, treat yourself well, and begin again tomorrow.