Self acceptance means growth
By truly accepting ourselves, we identify what we value and respect about ourselves, including our weaknesses, shortcomings and past mistakes.
Acceptance does not mean that there will be no change. Only when we accept ourselves, and our reality, we can grow to become better.
This is self-directed growth, and counselling therapists can guide in this process by showing unconditional positive regard, which includes being non judgmental, to unlock some of these unspoken blockages to becoming who we want to be.
For instance, it is not helpful to say to ourselves, “I am never jealous or “I should not judge others”.
Not wanting to see our weak spots, denying that we have these, or shaming these, sabotages growth.
So, when we identify that we are judgmental of others, we can ask ourselves where is this coming from? More often than not, the judgment is about traits we recognize in our current life or in our past. These are traits and characteristics we do not like about ourselves and which we rather hide than expose.
But only when we are honest with ourselves, and we identify that we struggle with some thoughts, feelings and behaviours of which we feel are not consistent with how we want to be, we can make changes. Avoidance, ignoring and being in denial, equals being stuck.
So, when we identify some jealousy, we can ask ourselves what is missing in our lives? Feelings of jealousy are hardly ever or all about others, but when others accomplish what we have not, it confronts us about our own lack of progress.
When we identify our thoughts and feelings and are open and honest about our actions, or lack of actions, our motivation and intent, can we truly make changes. These come from acceptance that we are not perfect.
It is a beautiful process of learning and growing.