January 7

ACCEPTANCE MONTH: DAY 7: “I am my own biggest critic. Before anyone else has criticized me, I have already criticized myself. But for the rest of my life, I am going to be with me, and I don’t want to spend my life with someone who is always critical. So I am going to stop being my own critic. It’s high time that I accept all the great things about me.”― C. JoyBell C.

I enjoy this quote, and have used it before. It is funny how each time I use it, I am in a different place with personal acceptance.

Because it works this way, personal acceptance is different than anything else I know. I can focus on acceptance of life, other people, situations, addiction, or a myriad of other issues. BUT, I have recognized for many years that when I can stop the inner railings of Ego about ME, I am much better off with the rest of all of that. These spiritual principles and steps work like that. All spiritual growth depends on self-acceptance, self-love and allowing Higher Power to belong to me, personally first and foremost.

When I get okay with ME, I am okay with the rest of the world. Period. End of story.

So, I am working through another level of self-acceptance right now. Perfect for January, Step 1, and the ongoing spiritual practice of focusing on a Step each month, and its corresponding spiritual Principle. See?

So, I am practicing loving me, aging floppy bits and all. My skin and body feel somewhat treacherous to me these days. I have always been able to trust my body in many ways to remain in place. It is not doing that any longer. I want to intervene, but it has become a losing battle with my body. Oh no! I no longer want to be at war with the shell that houses my spirit and soul. I want to allow and accept its deterioration and aging with grace and dignity, loving its transformation as it no longer goes into yoga poses I thought I could do forever. This is a great process. To be made aware of my REAL feelings about this old shell.

The aging thing has nothing to do with my spirit, or being God’s favorite kid…with wrinkles! Hahaha. I do not like to be photographed any more. I used to do that for a living! I have traded on my physical attributes in so many ways in this journey on the blue marble. Now, forget about it! Hahaha…and so I get to work more deeply on that!

My worth has nothing to do with that stuff, but our culture does not know this. We value strength and youth. Many people are spending tons and tons of money on their face and hair and clothing and other coverings to detract from their lack of acceptance of themselves. Most of my greatest heroes in life do not look pretty or handsome in the sense we most often think about.

I am happy to have this work to do. It is another layer of acceptance that is critical to master. I have found that I am quite critical lately, certainly in need of an acceptance tune up…how about you?

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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