Acceptance is the answer so I’m told by the wise ones who’ve gone before me. We have to accept used cars AS IS when we purchase them. All the flaws and all the good points have to be accepted. A used car is NOT perfect and never will be. It will always have something not quite up to snuff. So, we also have to accept ourselves AS IS, for we are not perfect … we have faults, flaws, gashes, and welts. We have good qualities and we have bad. We have bad times in our memory banks and good times. Why, oh why, are we so very reluctant to accept ourselves AS IS???
I think it starts with the fact that acceptance itself is hard. We want to be different people; we want a different past. We stomp our feet in protest, “Why should I have to accept myself?” It’s actually really simple. If you ever want to heal, if you ever want to grow, if you ever want to move on, you must, must accept yourself. And that means accepting yourself just as you are. Sure you can improve on yourself, but the starting point is to accept your present self. Once you’ve done that you have the answer to the riddle … the key to the castle … the golden egg.
How do I know this? Because I’ve been there! I’ve crawled those roads, I’ve figured out the answer, and I’ve come out the other side. I spent a lifetime hating myself and not accepting a thing about me. I wanted it all changed. I fantasized about the person I really was … I escaped my misery with those fantasies. I was miserable until I worked the Steps and found the courage to accept the person I really was. Then, and only then, I could move on from my past and work on who I was. I’m still not perfect, like any used car, and I never will be. I have flaws. I just no longer have flaws that cripple me.
Have you accepted yourself AS IS? How did you do it? If not, can you?