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Rest in Yourself – Ways to more Self Acceptance & Serenity

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In times of endless self-optimization, people get the impression that they have to constantly work on themselves in order to keep up in terms of appearance, career, and so on. However, constant self-criticism is not healthy and trains the brain to pay more attention to one’s own mistakes and weaknesses instead of strengths and successes. In this self-care article, we show you how to promote your self-acceptance and composure and thus find more inner peace.

Comparisons & Ideal Images make unhappy

Who doesn’t know it: On social media channels, almost every life seems perfect. The constant comparisons extend across all categories, whether it’s appearance, career, cooking skills, vacations, family idyll, and so on. Everyone always presents themselves from their best side, which makes it clear how close to reality this kind of self-portrayal can be. Nevertheless, it leads to a sustained pressure for self-optimization among users, which is increasingly spreading in the analog world. 

Everyone has self-doubts and, if necessary, criticizes themselves. This is part of being human and it is important to question oneself and want to develop further. However, there is a limit to this. Those who always strive to emulate an ideal image of themselves distort their self-perception, put themselves under pressure and sharpen the focus for mistakes and weaknesses – both in themselves and in others. All this robs energy and joy of life. Through self-acceptance, such thoughts and behaviors can be reduced or even dissolved.

Basic Principle of Self Acceptance

What would happen if you did not view your faults and weaknesses negatively, but neutrally and as part of your existence? This is exactly the core of self acceptance: to accept yourself with all your strengths, weaknesses and personality traits without judging them. Let go of your own ideals and show yourself respect and appreciation, even in situations where you are confronted with your own shortcomings. Every person can and should develop further, no question. But constant new optimization attempts as well as ever new demands on your own person inhibit the development of your real potential, which you overlook. Make one thing clear to yourself: You are good enough, just as you are.

Easier said than done

What sounds so nice, of course, does not work overnight. The good thing is that every small step towards self-acceptance increases your well-being. To get started, try looking at yourself from the outside like a friend. Good friends are accepted exactly as they are – that is, with their faults and weaknesses, without wanting to improve them.

It also helps to distance yourself from negative thoughts about yourself. You drop your coffee cup and immediately it pops into your head how clumsy you are and that you never pay proper attention? In such moments, a single event is seen as evidence of a negative trait, rather than a simple mishap. If you constantly blame yourself for little things like this, they will shape a negative view of your self in the long run. Try to recognize such destructive thoughts as such and push them aside without judging yourself for the emergence of this self-criticism. True to the motto “Don’t believe everything you think”.

Advantages from accepting yourself as you are

Those who practice self-acceptance come to a more realistic self-assessment and can gain more energy in addition to relief and satisfaction. Dealing with yourself as well as with your fellow human beings becomes more open and honest, since weaknesses no longer have to be concealed. Accepting one’s own mistakes also helps to do the same with others and to remain calm in difficult situations. Everyone is good the way they are. This is the view that we as a society should represent, communicate to our social environment and anchor in our own minds.

Take it easy - ways to more serenity

There are situations that make you fly off the handle – sometimes more, sometimes less. But what is it that distinguishes people who tend to be quick-tempered from those who can’t seem to be ruffled by anything and always seem to be a rock in the storm? It’s the ability to remain calm, regardless of external circumstances. 

When something unexpected happens, it is always up to you how you react. If you have composure within you, you can handle situations more thoughtfully instead of just being guided by your feelings as they arise. Here are 5 tips and exercises to internalize more composure and take the wind out of the sails of supposedly stressful situations.

Lower Perfectionism

People who are only satisfied with their own best performance are in constant competition with themselves. The expectation of wanting to achieve the best results in every situation causes inner tension. An imperfect performance is not the same as a bad one. Good is good enough – learn to appreciate your effort regardless of its ratings.

Recognizing subjective perception

Every person has a pair of glasses on his nose through which he or her sees the world. These glasses are shaped by all the experiences you have throughout your life. You can certainly imagine that each pair of glasses exists only once. Realize that you perceive the world very differently than the people around you do. Question your views, because they are not always the only true ones. It helps a lot to look at things from another side, as this promotes our understanding of each other and differences of opinion or even conflicts can be overcome more easily.

Pausing & reflecting on feelings

Reflecting on your own thoughts and feelings ties in with the previous point. A colleague’s comment drives you up the wall and you’d like to give her a piece of your mind right away? Instead of reacting immediately, stop for a moment and notice what feelings arise in you. Question whether the comment could be meant differently and why it annoys you so much. Inflamed feelings can be defused by reflecting on them, as you can distance yourself from them and become aware of their existence, but do not let them steer you. Perhaps the colleague has simply hit a sore spot without intentionally wanting to hurt you.

Zooming out

The dolphin emerged from the earlier butterfly style: due to high intensity of strength, required condition and precise technique, this style brings an increased level of difficulty. Both arms are thrown forward over the head at the same time and in a sweeping motion, so that the shoulders also come out of the water. Then the arms are pulled back to the body under the water and the feat begins again. Meanwhile, the legs are bent and the lower legs are struck down forcefully. After the crawl, the dolphin is the second fastest swimming stroke, but it is also very strenuous.

Acceptance

When we are confronted with problems, we can either take active action and contribute to the improvement of the situation or not. For the latter, only one thing helps – acceptance.  This is not at all about resignation, but rather about the following attitude: If you have no room for maneuver, the only right way is to accept things and live with them without constantly dwelling on them in your thoughts. Otherwise, you’re just wasting energy unnecessarily, and you’d better save it for things that are fun and fulfilling for you.

Often the events of our everyday life are only half as wild if we learn to look at them that way. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to determine how the unexpected affects our reactions, our behavior and thus our stress level. More composure helps like a shock absorber, because we don’t feel immediately thrown off course and are able to make reflective decisions and defuse stressful situations.

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