Acceptance and Accountability

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Acceptance and Accountability

So we know life’s a journey, we hopefully have a good idea of where we are on that journey (if not check out my recent post ‘Life’s a Journey…’) and where we want to go, or at least where we don’t want to go – which is just as important!

So how do we change? For me, the starting point was with acceptance and accountability.

Acceptance

Acceptance means to understand where we are in our journey and acknowledge that whilst it may not be where we want to be, it’s where we currently are and that we have chosen to change. This is a huge step and you should be super proud of yourself when you achieve this!

Without acceptance we can’t fully commit to change because whilst ever we resist where we are, we’ll feel frustrated and this emotion will dominate. We will feel inner conflict and negativity; the mind is likely to be busy, going round in circles but not achieving any answers. Once this frustration has gone, we allow our minds to be open to change and to provide us with the answers.

Sometimes we don’t even realise we’re resisting – this has happened to me recently! The sure way to tell is by listening to our body – feeling tension in our head, neck and shoulders is the sure sign!

Acceptance is also the first step to improving self-worth as it puts a stop to inner conflict. It enables us to reconnect with, and be nicer to ourselves which brings inner calm and allows us to just be.

Accountability

There’s no easy way to say this so I’m just going to put it straight out there; the only person who can make a change is you. Not me, not your partner or friend, not a counsellor or psychiatrist, you and only you. Everyone in the world can guide you on the right path, but no one can actually do it for you. Ever heard the phrase ‘you can lead an animal to water but you can’t make it drink’…?!

This may sound obvious but you have to decide to change! By this, I mean you have to make a conscious decision that you are going to start doing things differently and follow it up with actions. This means making a long term commitment, to do whatever it takes for as long as it takes. If you are open, curious and willing to explore new options, your life will change forever.

Remember, Einstein defined insanity as –

‘Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results!’

I now believe that first and foremost, we should be accountable to ourselves but in the beginning, whilst my self-worth was so low I found this difficult. I found it easier to be accountable to someone else as it meant more to me not to let them down, than it did to not let myself down. So if in the beginning, you need a friend to hold your hand, do it! Anything to get you on track!

By being accountable to ourselves first, we are showing ourselves love and respect which is fundamental to our happiness. However, there is still something incredibly important in having other people hold you accountable.

I have ‘Scoffee’ (Skype and coffee!) once a month with two amazing friends who are going through similar journeys. We keep each other on track, offer each other support and advice, share our successes and are there when things aren’t going to plan. Why? Because habits take a while to break, we can easily get sucked back in to our old ways and go off track but by holding each other accountable we’re each more likely to stay on track and succeed!

What should you take away from this?

There are two key points I would love you to take away;

resistance = frustration

you have to decide to be accountable for your own life

With the new year approaching, now is a natural time for us to assess where we are, what we have achieved this year and where we’d like to be this time next year. Spend some time giving this some thought. Do you need to achieve acceptance before you can move forward? Are you prepared to hold yourself accountable? Do you have a friend or family member who can help you?

I would also highly recommend watching a couple of awesome TED talks by Brene Brown, the first on vulnerability and the second on shame, as they both really helped me to achieve acceptance.

Once we have acceptance and accountability, our minds are open and free to address what I believe are the two fundamental issues for everyone – self-worth and fear. I’ll be talking a lot about these in later posts!

In the meantime, remember there is a reason for why you are where you are right now, there is a lesson to be learnt which is preparing you for your awesome future!

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