Acceptance vs. Seeking Change

I have always been very contended. While I have my share of wishes and desires, the object of these wishes and desires — their presence or absence — rarely affect my sense of balance. And particularly, the last few months, I have felt that I have floated with a deep sense of contentment that has been so blissful. But, acceptance — now, I have often struggled with it. Seems contradictory — but it is not. While contentment comes from a place of not needing something — acceptance, or the lack thereof, comes from a place of dealing with change. In some sense, I guess, the past has had a greater hold of me than the future. Letting go does not come easily — but, thankfully, on many occasions it does come, eventually.

Acceptance is opening ourselves to possibilities. Not being bound by what we expect life to be or what we are used to it being — but giving ourselves a chance to explore and experience newer situations. Someone very wise once told me, “What nature has in store must be accepted with love and gratitude”. Acceptance is living in the present instead of holding on to some imaginary past or future.

But, does acceptance mean not seeking change? Change is life; That which changes, lives. While life has its ways of throwing up a surprise (or two or more) and we try to accept what comes our way as gracefully as we could, does it mean we don’t actively work on effecting change on ourselves and our circumstances? I have a feeling that is not true.

First of all, the process of introspection has been one of growth and fulfilment for me. So, if I don’t seek to look within and change for the better, then I will become stagnant. Secondly, we all have a responsibility and a duty to ourselves and our families to provide and create the best opportunities and environment for them and us. So, seeking change is fundamental to our lives in this world.

Then, what is the answer to this paradox? I think the answer, perhaps, is in our attitudes. It is whether we seek a particular change or just willing to work in the present for a change — whatever it may be. Keep doing our duty and not expect or be bound by the result. Be contended even in acceptance. Accept with all your heart. Accept. Don’t Expect. But, keep working.