Close your eyes and think about yourself for just a moment…head to toe, inside and out.
Do you accept yourself 100% as you are right now?
Or…do you feel you’d accept and love yourself more if you could justttt….lose those last 5 pounds, say no more often, be a better wife/mom/daughter/friend/boss/employee/etc.?
Its typical for us to be hard on ourselves. We are our own worst critic, but sometimes we allow those critical thoughts to impact our sense of self worth.
We see our imperfections as flaws and as a result, we beat ourselves up, think we’re not as good as others, and hold ourselves back from change, growth or new opportunities.
We settle into our safe comfort zones and accept that being overly critical with ourselves is the norm.
But, it doesn’t have to be the ‘norm’.
@@When you unconditionally love yourself, you let go of the internal judgement.@@ You don’t ignore your flaws, but you don’t let them define you or hold you back.
You see the beauty of who you are and what you offer the world. You also accept that no one is perfect and your imperfections are part of who you are and YOU have the choice to change them or accept and love them.
What is Unconditional Acceptance
@@Unconditional Acceptance is accepting yourself just as you are…flaws and all!@@ It’s accepting everything about you without judgement or criticism. It’s seeing all sides of yourself and loving yourself as-is.
Think of it like this…picture in your mind someone that you love completely and unconditionally. If you have children, I imagine they popped in your mind first and that is one of the best examples. But, if you’re not a mom, perhaps it’s your spouse or partner, or maybe it’s your mom.
You love them no matter what, right?
Butttt….are they perfect?
Do you love everything about them?
Of course not! In fact, I bet there are some things about them you don’t even like that much!
For example, perhaps your child has a tendency to throw a major temper tantrum right in the middle of the grocery store every time you run in to grab a few things for dinner. I bet you don’t love that part of your wonderful kiddo and I bet if you could wave a magic wand, you’d change that in hot flash!
But…does that mean you don’t love your child? Of course not!
You love them in spite of their imperfection.
That, my friends is unconditional acceptance.
While we extend this to others in our lives, its rare for us to gift ourselves with that level of self-love and respect.
We need to strive for this. In fact, this should be at the top of your personal project list.
@@Unconditionally loving and accepting yourself is the key to a joy filled life.@@ It’s what ignites the light inside you that shines out for all the world to see.
The biggest piece of unconditional acceptance is self respect. It plays a huge role in your ability to see your flaws and accept them as-is. In fact, I’d consider it the foundation on which unconditional acceptance is built upon.
Self-Respect is the Game Changer
When you truly respect yourself, you create a foundation that is rock solid. It’s unflappable…it doesn’t come and go, it’s always present.
Self-respect becomes your anchor. It grounds you and supports you. It’s your north star that guides you.
Its your inner mama that protects and loves you.
@@Where there is self-respect, there is no self-hate. There’s just no room for it.@@
I’ve always respected myself, but in my recent quest to improve my body love, I had a major shift. While I completely respect myself, I was lacking respect for my body. I didn’t realize that this lack of respect in this area meant that I didn’t have the level of self-respect that I thought I had or that I needed to unconditionally accept myself.
I was on a group conference call with Rachel Cole and she said we may not ever love our bodies, but we can respect it. Hearing that instantly cracked something open for me. It was in that moment, it became clear that I had not been respecting my body and I knew that I wanted to and I totally could extend that respect.
With that realization came a major shift. I feel different on the inside which is causing me to listen to myself more, extend greater compassion, and feel a sense of inner peace that I’ve never felt before.
My self-respect has now developed into a solid foundation instead of an shaky one and from that, I can truly say I do unconditionally accept myself. My flaws are no longer glaring imperfections that make me less than others. They are part of me and make me the unique woman that I am and I love that.
Benefits of Unconditionally Accepting Yourself
There are so many benefits to learning to unconditionally accept yourself...
It introduces ease. Ever since I made the shift with my own self-respect, I have felt this sense of ease. The internal struggles we create for ourselves aren’t as present and ease replaces the tension. I’m no longer fighting with myself…I’m working with myself and that brings this sense of ease which is truly magical to experience. Right now, my life is cocooned in ease…life is easier, because I’m easier on myself.
Quiets the Inner Critic
I like to call my inner critic my inner mean girl. When you unconditionally accept yourself you start to let go of the power she holds over you. She’ll never go away, because our inner critics are always there, but it means not really listening to her. When we don’t listen to our inner critic she loses power over us and we are able to step outside our comfort zones.
Opinions of others matter less
So many people hold themselves back because they’re afraid of what others might think of them. When you build that rock solid foundation of complete self-respect and you unconditionally accept yourself, the opinions of others will matter a lot less. That’s not saying you won’t still care what others think…you will (to truly not care what others think about you would mean being completely disconnected from society, which isn’t good either!). But, while you may care what others think of you, it doesn’t impact your actions or your beliefs about yourself.
You judge yourself less
When you respect, love, and accept yourself, you don’t judge yourself as harshly. You see your imperfections, but they don’t define you…you merely see them as part of you. It’s neither good nor bad…it’s just part of you.
You see these as areas you can work on, but you drop the judgement of yourself. This in itself if one of the more freeing parts of unconditional acceptance and plays right into the ease part.
It’s a Choice
When you unconditionally love and accept yourself, you let go of the inner mean girl, the judgement, the comparison, and the punishment for perceived failings. All of that is hard. But when you truly love yourself, you love your imperfections too. When you make a mistake, or your imperfections are staring at you in the mirror, you don’t beat yourself up.
It’s telling yourself it’s okay when things get hard.
It becomes easier to be yourself because it’s being understanding and compassionate about who you are, what’s going on in your life, and you want to be.
@@Unconditionally accepting yourself is giving yourself permission to be imperfect.@@
But…it’s a choice. You are in control of your life and you get to choose if you want to make it harder and more uncomfortable by not accepting who you are in this moment, or if you want to let all that go and embrace the imperfect you as-is.
Unconditionally accepting and loving yourself does not mean that you never want to improve yourself or you never want to drop those last 5 pounds. It means that you aren’t holding your value and self-worth hostage until you make those changes.
Your motivation for changing and improving yourself shifts. No longer are you coming from the place of ‘I will be happy if I could just ….’. @@When you love & accept yourself as-is, you are already happy with yourself@@. If you choose to change something about yourself, it’s because of another benefit. Losing those last 5 pounds is no longer because you will finally be happy and get the life of your dreams, but it’s because you’ll feel healthier.
Most people don’t love themselves, so to go on this path is a bit like swimming upstream. But, with the rock solid foundation of self-respect and a healthy dose of unconditional acceptance, you have more than enough strength to make it.