A key element of living a positive life is acceptance. In order to embrace the positive aspects of life, it is important to do three very important things in relation to acceptance:
1. Accept yourself.The acceptance of oneself is something that so many people overlook in their day to day life. It's not easy to accept yourself -- the good, the bad, and the just plain human -- but acceptance is such a key element of positivity. If we can't be happy with ourselves, what can we be happy with? As I mentioned last week, the world is a reflection of our perspective, and if we have a negative perception of ourselves we will ultimately project negativity. To look at yourself and accept who you are makes you truly happy.
2. Accept others. Often this is easier than accepting ourselves, but it is still difficult because so many of us are critical of others. It is hard not to compare and contrast others to ourselves and it is even harder not to be disappointed or unhappy when others don't live up to our expectations. For this reason, it is very important to accept others for who they are -- not who we want them to be. There are many ways to do this, but one obvious way is to work on your communication skills. The better you can communicate with others, the better your chance of understanding them. The more you understand, the more you are likely to be able to accept others for who they are.
3. Accept the world around you. Also not so easy is accepting the world you live in. Whether you are happy with your job/house/significant other/friends/hobbies or not, you are living in the world with these people/situations/things and you must either accept them -- or change them. If you are not happy with the world you live in, it is important to change it, but if you are content with where you are, you must accept it. Embrace the people and things in your life that you love and accept them as they are. If there are elements of your life you don't want to accept, consider changing them and making the environment around you one that can be worthy of your acceptance.
This post has boiled down acceptance to a pretty basic idea, but, in reality, it is not easy. It is not easy to accept ourselves, to accept others, or to accept the world around us -- but it absolutely critical to living positively and experiencing happiness consistently. The first step in acceptance is being conscious of it. Knowing that you can, and want, to accept the people and things around you will prompt you to be more considerate about the world around you -- and more aware of those things you don't want to accept. Getting rid of what you don't want to accept is another way to achieve a happier, more positive life.