Why Self-Acceptance Important for Mental Well-Being
Self-acceptance is the ability to embrace your attributes and achievements along with welcoming your limitations, flaws, and faults thus accepting yourself in a true sense. It basically strives to establish unconditional support and acceptance towards oneself across all situations and at all times. It extends beyond the notion of self-esteem which merely evaluates how we see ourselves and instead caresses the different facets of life that portray the real self. Today, self-acceptance is viewed as an important component of maintaining sound mental health and well-being. People practice different self-acceptance strategies to lead better and happier life.
Importance of self-acceptance:
a) Helps you control your emotions
b) Builds self-confidence
c) Makes you stronger in face of challenges
e) Lets you be more self-aware
f) Reduces self-criticism
g) Makes you happier
h) Allows you to acknowledge your character traits and habits
Tips to boost self-acceptance:
1. Practice relaxed awareness or mindfulness:
Relaxed awareness or mindfulness is a way of consciously taking notice of your thoughts, feelings, emotions, and psychological states. It allows you to build a connection with your inner self and releases the pent-up worries of daily life. One needs to understand that it is normal to feel negative emotions once in a while and should therefore avoid turning them into positive ones. It is crucial to let all kinds of thoughts freely flow across instead of repressing any to benefit from this exercise. Engaging in this practice for only 5-30 minutes a day can itself draw in favorable results.
2. Be receptive to your emotions:
While practicing relaxed awareness, people may notice numerous negative thoughts too. One shall not shy away from them but rather understand that they are a part and parcel of human life and shall be welcomed with open arms. Being comfortable with negative experiences is as important as it helps one learn about certain things even better. Running from the so-called bad feelings aggravates pain whereas accepting them provides you an opportunity to grow.
3. Stop comparisons:
It is but a human tendency to engage in comparisons with one another which is a major reason for most of the problems in life. Doing so accounts for a feeling of jealousy and hatred towards others apart from triggering your own insecurities. Comparisons lead to anxiety, stress, and a range of health problems that may affect a person’s overall well-being. It may cause one to undertake self-deprecating talk, increase self-doubt and also result in decreased self-esteem. One shall thus realize that every person is unique and comparing yourself with others is only going to be a blockade to your happiness.
4. Gratitude sessions:
In a general sense, gratitude is characterized by expressing thankfulness and appreciation towards others for their acts of kindness. Gratitude simply stems from the survival value of helping others and being helped in return. It is known to boost happiness and feelings of warmth and goodness.
Forgiveness is a voluntary process of letting go of the emotions and thoughts of resentment, bitterness, and anger held towards those who have wronged us. Leaving behind the unpleasant past and moving on in life instead of blaming yourself or others is a sign of an emotionally mature individual.
6. Be compassionate:
Practicing self-compassion entails being warm and understanding towards yourself even after facing failure, defeat, or criticism. One can regularly make time for self-relaxing activities, encourage and motivate yourself to bounce back and keep working towards your goal. Rewarding yourself for small accomplishments and periodically engaging in self-care helps to destress yourself which is again crucial to maintain your mental health.
7. Learn from your past:
Mistakes are simply opportunities to learn. One should avoid sobbing over what has already happened and look forward to learning from past mistakes that can probably teach you a lot more about life than anything else. Attributing mistakes to yourself and feeling guilty about them is not just disturbing but also something that affects your mental state significantly.
*Practicing self-acceptance is essential and involves willingly making peace with oneself and pondering upon our strengths and weaknesses. It increases your self-confidence and makes you less susceptible and vulnerable to criticism. Thus, it lets you wholly welcome every aspect of yourself without an exception!*