What is acceptance?

Acceptance is a very relevant topic at the moment but one that, in my personal and client experience, we all find hard. So what do I mean by acceptance? Reinhold Niebuhr said it better than I can in the Serenity Prayer:

“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”

There is so much that is having a major effect on our personal and business lives at the moment that is very much out of our control. For our sanity and wellbeing, it is important to accept the facts, however much they might upset us or make us feel really angry or despairing.

Acceptance does not mean accepting that what is going on for us is OK for it may very well be not at all OK. It means accepting that there is nothing we can do about the cause, be it the government, a family member or a customer! That frees us up to take action about the effect and how we will respond to whatever is going on. It is so easy to waste valuable time and energy on “the things I cannot change” so we have nothing left to deal with the consequences.

If prayers are not for you then there is a very simple CBT technique that may help (you may need to take a few deep calming breaths before you can deploy this rational, logical approach):

  • What is the issue?
  • Can I do anything about it?
    • NO – go off and do something else!
    • YES – Can I do it now?
      • NO – go off and do something else! (Perhaps make a note for future action)
      • YES – Do it!
Judith Hanson
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Judith Hanson

Judith is a qualified Clinical Hypnotherapist (DipCHyp, HPD, MNCH), and NLP Master Practitioner and Coach. As a member of the National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) and the Complementary and the Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC) she is bound by their Codes of Conduct. She also undertakes regular training, as well as frequent supervision, to update her knowledge and skills, in order to provide a professional and effective service. She treats everyone as an individual and by developing a good relationship, based on mutual respect and trust and always does the best for her clients.

What is acceptance?

by Judith Hanson Time to read: 1 min