When your life has been impacted by addiction, it’s easy to beat yourself up and feel excessive shame. But that kind of behavior will never drive you to commit to the life-long process of beating your addiction. Instead, you need to master the art of personal acceptance.
By accepting who you are, the nature of your drug addiction, and the ways in which you can beat it, you are giving yourself the power and the confidence to defeat the stranglehold of addiction. Acceptance gives you the strength to pry back the choking fingers of addiction away from your throat and give your lungs access to the glorious and life-giving air of sobriety.
What Is Acceptance?
Acceptance is an opening of your heart to the realities of life and to the ways in which you have been impacted by your life choices. It means you don’t fight against the realities of your life, but accept them for what they are and use them to grow as a person and move forward in life. It’s a major part of becoming a better person emotionally and spiritually and it can serve as a huge boost in recovery.
No less an expert in healing than Deepak Chopra had this to say about acceptance: “Nothing brings down walls as surely as acceptance.” These beautiful words can serve as a milestone for mastering the art of acceptance. It isn’t about actively fighting your life’s circumstances, but allowing the river of life to flow through you.
If that sounds a little too New Age for your taste, just think of acceptance as a way to forgive yourself for the problems caused by your drug addiction. You’ll no longer be agonizing over the mistakes you made, the people you hurt, and the so-called failures that you feel were caused by your addiction. With acceptance, you can forgive yourself for these concerns and heal your heart.
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How Acceptance Heals
Learning how to accept your addiction as a part of your life can help you isolate its causes and move past them. Addiction is often called a “monkey on the back,” but treating it as something that you should be ashamed of or something that is out of your control only gives your addiction the power to master you.
Acceptance breaks that control by giving you an honest assessment of the nature of addiction and heals the emotional and spiritual wounds which you have suffered. Your pain is very real as are the problems of your addiction. Acceptance doesn’t minimize the severity of these problems but helps you understand that they can be conquered.
Moving through the process of acceptance can help you heal in the following way:
- Honestly appraise your life
- Move past guilt, anger, and depression
- Learn lessons from your mistakes
- Apply those lessons to future decisions
- Teach you stronger feelings of empathy
- Open your heart to personal forgiveness
Basically, you’ll be looking at your addiction through clearer eyes, eyes that can now identify the personal weaknesses that contributed to your addiction and the strengths that can help you beat it. Everyone has personal strengths that they can use to improve their lives and accepting those can give you the self-esteem and the courage you need to recover.
What Can Derail Your Acceptance
On your path to discovering acceptance, it is easy to get derailed or off-track. This is especially true if you’re fighting a debilitating condition like an addiction. The following problems often follow people who are recovering from addiction and make it more difficult for them to gain acceptance:
- Relapse into use
- Personal grievances in hurt friends or family members
- Clinical depression and anxiety
- Struggles with a career or school
- Guilt that you’re struggling to defeat
- Exposure to negativity
- Difficulty adjusting to life outside of rehab
The key to recovering from these problems with acceptance is to simply get back on track. Yes, you might get bucked off the horse of acceptance by any of these nagging problems. But acceptance is calm and forgiving stead and it will stand by your side calmly and wait for you to get back on. And like any horse with riding, acceptance can be calmed and tamed to your own personal use.
How You Can Develop Life-Changing Acceptance
Anyone can obtain the acceptance they need to change their life and beat their addiction. Let me repeat that: ANYONE can! That means you, my friend. All it takes is an honest mind and a little hard work. But maybe you need to a little help getting pointed in the right direction. Follow these practices to master the skills necessary to gain personal acceptance:
- Mindfulness meditation – This practice is designed to make your more “present” in your daily life and to feel a more peaceful and relaxed state of mind.
- Create a beginner’s mind – What is a beginner’s mind? It is the state of mind you feel when you begin a new task without understanding anything about it. Your mind is free of biases and opinions about that task. Obtaining this state of mind is crucial for acceptance.
- Practice humility – Humility is the understanding that you have limitations and may require help. Accepting this part of your life can give you a stronger sense of your strengths and open you up to getting the help you need to recover.
- Understand your fallibility – I make mistakes. You make mistakes. Making mistakes is a part of life. Your addiction is a mistake. But like all mistakes, there is a solution. Accepting that you made a mistake and taking charge of healing from it will aide your recovery.
Learning acceptance is all about having the personal grace to master your addiction and gain the clearness of focus you need for a successful recovery. The best part is that you can master acceptance in your own unique way: you don’t need to follow a strict formula. Gaining acceptance with your own path is a crucial part of your recovery journey.
Dedicate Yourself To Mastering Acceptance
By now, it should be obvious that acceptance is absolutely necessary for your recovery journey. While we know that you have the strength to do it on your own, you might not feel confident enough to take it on by yourself. That’s where we can step in and help. At TurningPointTreatment.org, we have the tools you need to recover from addiction. Contact us today.