Acceptance: an essential choice for coping well

Acceptance: an essential choice for coping well

As we look back on the year that’s gone by, we have collectively learnt much; much that we probably wouldn’t have if it was just another normal year. Awareness, Acceptance and Adaptation were the three ‘As’ that were most talked about in every circle, for everyone wanting to cope with what came upon us. Every traveller on that road of life’s journey has various choices to make and, with a variety of challenges that come our way most times in life, what comes in handy is ‘Acceptance’. Yes, ‘Acceptance’ is most definitely a conscious and empowering choice we make although it is a hard one. Acceptance of what we may not be able to change, what we have had to face and, what probably awaits us in the future.

Acceptance moves us out of shock, denial and the fear that may grip us in a troubled situation. It can credit us with the needed lessons and the positives we can see in it, the desired state of mind, a sense of freedom and release from chaining ourselves in the pain and most importantly a good deal of tolerance for struggles and stress. We then stop resisting, fighting and feeling miserable. Challenges in life are myriad and different in nature; our coping abilities are catalyzed by these challenges or struggles we face, and we go on to build the needed resilience and fortitude. It may not take the pain away but the acknowledgement of the hard truth can bring in responsibility and the readiness to deal with it better.

Covid-19 got the world to face what we call ‘mass trauma’; the pandemic itself, its toll on education, travel, finance, relationships, entertainment, social interaction…every area of our lives took a beating. It has upended normal life for months now, and left the world in unprecedented emotional turmoil. Where are we now on this? Have we chosen to accept it? Was there no choice? How resilient have we turned out to be? Although it would seem like we haven’t had much of a choice, we chose to do well in accepting what we are facing, embracing the difficulties, taking charge of our lives in a manner we can and, stepping ahead with courage.

Similarly as with Covid-19, every difficult situation calls for ‘Acceptance’ of it. Inner peace and a positive mindset, comes about when we choose to accept what is.  Acceptance leads to adaptation and before we know, we have learnt to do it better and differently. We have conquered something; the struggle, our coping with it and our preparedness for the next challenge round the corner. Discerning when to fight and persist is important and equally so, when is it time to accept. Accepting is not buckling down or bowing to what need not be. It isn’t a show of weakness or resorting to mediocrity. When we realize we are over-thinking, catastrophizing, coping in the wrong or harmful ways, we need to knock ‘Acceptance’ into us; acceptance of what was, what is and what may or may not be. It brings in a sense of control, happiness and peace in us and, aides emotional wellbeing.

‘There are things we don’t want to happen but have to accept, things we don’t want to know but have to learn, and people we can’t live without but have to let go’ – Unknown

As we usher in 2021, let’s move on hoping and rooting for better times ahead.

If you find yourself in the midst of struggles and difficulties and need to talk, do reach out.   LeanonMe is here to hear you.

AUTHOR: Portia, Lead Counsellor

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