Life’s Latest Lesson; Radical Acceptance

What it is & how it’s becoming my personal power’s best friend

Photo Courtesy of JJ Thompson, Unsplash.com

I was once told that the Universe only puts lessons in front of us until we master them.

Based on some of my own life’s lessons I’d say there’s substantial evidence of lessons appearing and reappearing until I’ve done my part to master them. Especially when it comes to my own personal power and not giving it away so easily. (Side note: personal power for me is my sense of self.)

Take, for example, my habit of people pleasing.

The Big U gave me plenty of chances to learn how my people pleasing was nothing more than a futile exercise in trying to fit in where I didn’t belong. Once I realized that I didn’t have to jump through someone else’s hoops in order to be loved, the lesson disappeared and my personal power increased.

LATEST AND GREATEST LESSON

The Big U has placed another doozy in front of me. Radical Acceptance.

If you’re scratching your head wondering what the heck that is, you’re not alone. I did the same thing about a three or so months ago when it showed up in one of my morning readings.

While I don’t wish to bore you with the countless lessons that have smacked me in the face lately, suffice it to say, here’s what I’ve come to understand about radical acceptance…

…Radical acceptance is accepting reality for what it is. It’s not settling. It’s about responding to the things that I can’t change in a way that releases the stress, angst, anger, pain, etc.

For example, let’s say I’m standing in line to get tickets for a concert I really want to see. There’s only one line because the ticket office is short-staffed. Since the line is moving slower than maybe I’d like, I could do any of the following:

A) I could complain about the line and the fact that there’s only one person issuing tickets,

B) I could push and shove the people in front of me, OR

C) I could wait my turn and occupy my time by listening to some of my favorite music.

Options A) and B), while they may be tempting, they aren’t going to change the reality that there’s only one line and that there’s only one person issuing tickets. Option C isn’t going to change reality either but if I’m passing the time enjoying my favorite music there’s a good chance I’m not stressing out over something I can’t change.

Here’s where the rubber is meeting the road with this lesson on radical acceptance…

Every time I allow a situation that I can’t change (and that includes people) to piss me off or stress me out all I’m really doing is allowing it (or them) to take charge of my personal power.

Radical acceptance = holding on to my personal power in any given situation.

MASTERING THIS LESSON

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,Courage to change the things I can,And wisdom to know the difference.”
-Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr

​Since I don’t like my personal power to be diminished or messed with I’m determined to master this radical acceptance lesson and here’s how…

When I feel my hackles or my blood pressure rise I’m going to assess the situation. Is there anything that I can change?

If there’s something I can’t change, (i.e. traffic or another person’s behavior) I’ll consider my options and choose something that’s going to lower my blood pressure and help me to maintain my own personal power.

At the end of the day, I’ll remember that radical acceptance is my key to changing the things I can and choosing how I respond to things I can’t change.

My friends, how do/will you use radical acceptance to not only keep your cool, but maintain your own personal power?

Until next time, here’s to leveraging some radical acceptance. Sending you much love and light, as always…


Originally published at www.whatswithinu.com.