If you're anything like me and many others I know, right now your world may resemble a random whirlwind that feels scary, unpredictable and discombobulating.
At the time of writing, there's powerful energetic shift and change in the air. You're not imagining it. It is an Actual Thing according to those who know.
The question is, how on earth do you navigate it?
How do you respond to life from a position of peacefulness rather than panic?!
I'd like to present you with a magical word for your mental toolkit which will help you navigate your life with more grace.
That word is acceptance.
When you accept something, good or bad, I believe it means you are working with it and learning from it, while continuing to gently hold your space in the world.
When you accept, you are not running from, losing sleep over or reacting to – rather you are responding, in a peaceful way. A way that allows you to keep your eyes open and your feet on the ground, so you can do what you need to do to stay happy and safe.
Acceptance is not necessarily forgiveness of a wrong done to you; although this particular ‘f’ word is a huge topic all of it’s own. For now we will park that to be discussed later.
To accept a bad situation is not to excuse it, or to ignore it. You can still give a problem your attention without letting it grind you down.
So with the scene set, I’d like to tell you about a time that I really felt the difference when I learned to accept something negative.
Once upon a time…
A little while back, a slightly more naïve version of myself was in a relationship that didn’t really serve either partner.
Now to be clear, this isn’t the part about acceptance! What I had to accept here was a lesson that would change my perspective on relationships, and therefore the trajectory of my life.
Isn’t it magical how accepting a perspective change can do that?
I first learned about the magic of acceptance when I had my second ‘inner voice’ experience in my late twenties. I was a student radiographer by then and living with my boyfriend, who was a fellow mature student.
We were in the middle of an argument over something, when I became aware of a sense of déjà vu. I realised I had repeated this scenario many times before. In this moment of realisation it was as though I was watching myself play a role in a film, and a pretty pointless one at that.
In that moment, the words I heard from somewhere in my system were, ‘The secret to life is acceptance’.
Those words are so simple and yet also profound.
It was one of those catalyst moments, where I realised how crazy it was for me to waste my energy fighting over something I couldn’t control or change. The biggest loser in that scenario was only ever going to be me.
When you accept the things you cannot change, you release all the life force energy you used trying to fight them. The same can be said for accepting the things you can change, rather than resisting or denying them.
Making this conscious choice to accept that I was facing a brick wall gave me the inspiration to begin my journey of moving on from a bad situation.
This is not a complete and exhaustive list, but rather 4 of the more common areas I see with the people I help.
If you recognise yourself in one of these areas, then please don’t be alarmed. Sit with that realisation for a while and let acceptance happen in it’s own good time.
Accept the possibility that your way up to now might not be working and you might need to change things.
This might include giving up your time and energy to distractions such as reality TV or social media feeds. Accept the possibility that small steps slowly change your life, imperfect action is better than none, you are ready for change, and you can do this.
This one is all about putting your big girl or boy pants on and taking charge. This always makes me think of driving a car with the windows open and the breeze blowing while listening to 80’s drive time classics, or maybe Beyoncé, or doing something else equally liberating!
You are the author or your own life story, the driver of your own vehicle, and the master of your own destiny.
The sad truth is that many people are so overpowered by the pressures of life that they forget this – they go through their days on autopilot letting life happen to them.
This is not acceptance – this is defeat, and the two should never be confused with each other.
But if you are here reading this blog post, then I know you are already awake to the Matrix Myth that we are born into. I know that you don’t drift through life. You came to this world to live, not just exist, and you will drive with the windows down and the power tunes on.
So please accept that you are responsible for yourself. There is no knight coming to save you, because you don’t need one – you were the knight all along, but you may have just forgotten for a while.
You were born to be response-able. It is in your DNA - you know how to respond in a healthier, more autonomous way to life.
So keep going, you’ve got this.
Accept that challenges are inevitable when you embark on change; but they don’t need to keep you stuck.
Accept you will experience the resistance (resist-dance) and want to run away. As you evolve and learn, old patterns will come up and bring with them emotions. Accept that as you transcend your comfort zones, you will inevitably feel discomfort.
“No pain, no gain” doesn’t just apply in the gym – it’s a universal truth.
It can be useful to identify your emotions as they arise; labelling them and then thanking them for showing you that you are shifting your energy.
Consider negative emotions as more of a warning light on your dashboard, than as a red light at a junction. That emotion wants your attention, and that is all. You don’t have to slam on the brakes.
Abnormal is the new normal when it comes to spiritual growth.
Accept that to get where you want to, you must embrace a spiralling journey from your head to your heart that you cannot create in a formulaic way.
It will not always make sense; it cannot be predicted or mapped out, and you will not see the way ahead until you reach the next step.
But here’s the silver lining - this means you can let go of doing things in the ‘right way’ and take the pressure off yourself. When you blaze a trail you are going first, you are not following a well-trodden path. So it stands to reason that you won’t be able to see far ahead on the path.
To put it simply, the path isn’t there yet, because you are just about to create it yourself.
As Joseph Campbell so wisely wrote: “If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.”
I’d like to leave you with the following thought. Accepting a challenge, good or bad, means you are responding to life from a peaceful place.
The more of your peaceful attitude you put out there, the more these peaceful vibes will be bounced back to you. Whether you believe in the Law of Attraction or not, I think most of us can see how we create our own bubble of life around us.
When we are angered, flustered, or overwhelmed, we only seem to see more of the same coming our way. And when we are peaceful and present, we skip over the ripples while enjoying the big picture and the beauty of life.
I’m not saying put on your rose-tinted spectacles and adopt a Pollyanna attitude. I’m simply saying that as we choose to respond to life calmly, our immediate environment mirrors that calmness.
If you are feeling a little skeptical still, that is perfectly okay.
Nonetheless, would you agree to a little challenge?
Try practicing acceptance for a week – just one week – and take note of how you feel. If you’d be brave enough to come back here and tell me in the comments below, I would love to hear about your experience.
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