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#MotivationMonday: Self-Acceptance

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MotivationMonday-Quote-SelfAcceptance“Because one believes in oneself, one doesn’t try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn’t need others’ approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.”  ― Lao Tzu

Having Self-Acceptance

Learning to have self-acceptance doesn’t just end with what we were like in addiction. After working a program of recovery and helping others, most of us found it easier to accept our past for exactly what it was. It also helps to know that since we have a disease, a lot of those actions were based around a sickness, but what about self-acceptance in sobriety? Have you ever done something that you knew was wrong, but felt you should have known better because you’re sober? If the answer is yes, don’t worry, you are totally not alone.

We are all human and as a result our behaviors are going to be nothing less of than human. We will lie, cheat, steal, and be mean in some form or another during our sobriety. Some will go back to drinking or drugging because of this behavior, others will learn and grow towards being better people, but the self-acceptance still has to come as a result. It’s easy to share my past experiences in active addiction, because it’s no longer who I am, but it’s much harder to recognize my humanness in sobriety and share an experience that happened maybe even days ago. Why is this so?

Well, it boils down to lack of self-acceptance and fear of what others will think. If I make a mistake, talk about it with another alcoholic that I trust, and try to right the wrong, then I should in theory be OK. But what happens when I share that experience out in the open with others where I could be ridiculed and judged for my poor behavior sober? The reality is it has nothing to do with any of them, because if I self-accept and try my best, then there opinion does not matter. The other side of that is that we don’t have to share every little thing that is going on in our lives to others if we don’t feel comfortable with whom we are sharing this with. We can choose to be selective in who we share our lives with and that is OK, too. That is very different from hiding secrets, by the way. I am not saying it’s OK to block yourself off from the world, but to share with those whom you feel you can trust is a right that every person has.

It’s OK to make mistakes. You will make plenty of them. It’s also OK to not be perfect. If you believe in your heart that you are doing the best you can do and your relationship is right with your Higher Power, then you are in fact working a good program of recovery. We are grow at different paces and we all learn at different times, so allow yourself time to grow, but don’t forget to extend that same courtesy to others around you.

Just for today, forgive yourself and others and start building towards that self-acceptance that you do deserve.

Written By: Watershed Ashling

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