As my birthday nears and as I reflect on things that are versus things that still could be, I realize that a crucial element to both authenticity and abundance is acceptance.
It doesn’t necessarily mean “settling” or “being complacent” or “compromising” but, rather, “understanding” (yourself better), “embracing” (your flaws and the entirety of your self and your situation), and “making the most of what you have.”
In my case, for instance, I have come to accept that my body already is a certain way and shape, and that I’m turning 32 (32!!!) so there is no way in heaven that I’ll be able to go back to my size at 23 years old and not get myself sick. I’ve been there, done that, and the only way to get back to health is to live healthily. It won’t make sense to be back to 100 lbs but look emaciated, be sickly, and have little energy to do anything else. It doesn’t mean that I’ll stay this way, but I also won’t kill myself fitting into my old pair of skinny jeans (which now fit my 12-year-old niece).
I have also come to accept that I have built and designed my life in a certain way, such that there are some things that I really will not want to do, no matter how good the money can be in those scenarios. For example, I will never work for people, companies, and sectors that do not resonate with me simply because I am not one who compartmentalizes Work and Life. My work is part of who I am.
There are many other things that I have come to accept–large and small–and my acceptance of them has made it easier for me to maneuver and strategize around them. (I’m not a poker player, but I do know that poker players play with the hands that are dealt them; they don’t wish for a better hand. Same principle.)
In short, I am no longer going to beat myself up over “coulda, woulda, shouldas.” I am not going to agonize over some parallel reality because it is not part of my current reality, and I will stop punishing myself for things that don’t work out.
Life will always present another adventure, another opportunity, and the best thing to do is make sure that we are ready for whatever comes up ahead.
Beating ourselves up won’t really do much for our present or future, no matter how well we do it. So the next time you’re tempted to beat yourself up over something that isn’t the way you’d like it to be, STOP. Why would you want to get beaten, battered, and bruised by your very self anyway?
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