Life is too complex and unpredictable to be ‘happy’ all the time. We shouldn’t be afraid of going into the less comfortable feelings and emotions that arise, because on the other side of the grittiness of unhappiness is freedom. But first we must first be willing to embrace our life with an attitude of acceptance.
By accepting ‘what is,’ we begin to free up the energy, focus, creative thinking, and resources we require to start re-building our happiness from where we are.
Acceptance is a conscious decision to acknowledge what is happening in our life, and to stop resisting it.Unfortunately acceptance is not just a matter of waking up one morning and thinking, “Okay, life is as it is.” To fully accept our unhappiness we often have to grieve our losses, both current and past. It is my experience that without this step, happiness remains elusive.
When we acknowledge, accept, grieve, and release our unhappiness and pain, our lives begin to change…we find inner peace and we can move forward.When we hold on tightly and resist our lives, the more happiness seems to slip out of our grasp. It is like trying to hold water in a clenched fist…it all seeps out. However, if we cup our hands we can hold the water easily. The shape we make when we cup our hands is an act of surrender…of acceptance. It is a symbol of receiving in openness the life we have, and the good things that are yet to come.
I find the image of cupped hands holding water a beautiful reminder to move through life with acceptance rather than resistance. To find happiness through truthfulness and openness.
How can you start finding more happiness and freedom through acceptance today?
1. What do I need to accept is happening, or has happened, in my life that is keeping me stuck and unhappy?This process is difficult and sometimes makes us anxious. If you’re struggling with anxiety, these following techniques may be useful:
2. What is the most difficult or painful part about accepting this reality?
3. What do I need to grieve in order to accept my life as it is?
This exercise is useful in slowing down a racing mind and bringing peace and calm to the body.
Breath in and out and count, ‘1’. Breathe in and out and count, ‘2’. Continue to 10 then repeat, starting at 1 again.
If your mind wanders and you forget what number you are on, start at 1 again. If it is too hard to stay focused on your breathing for 10 counts, start at 2, 5, or whatever is comfortable for you.
Repeat this exercise until you feel calmer, being conscious to relax your shoulders and jaw as you do this exercise.
This mantra is a great one to use at night if you struggle to fall asleep from an overly anxious and active mind. Repeat the phase until you feel more peaceful and calm.
“May I be well, may I be at peace, may I be free from suffering.”
Or alternatively you can repeat;
“I am well, I am at peace, I am free from suffering.”
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xxx Jess xxx