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#88 Practicing Acceptance

Last week, we talked about the difference between accepting yourself for who you are and tolerating a life you don't love. This week, I’m back to talk about practical ways you can practice acceptance.

We’ll look at several methods to help you practice, such as reframing your negative thoughts and recognizing impermanence. No matter where you are on your journey of self-acceptance, I hope you can use these methods to gain the confidence to be exactly you.

When you can accept yourself, you can become Your Favorite You who is living the life that you want.

Since you’re ready to become your favorite version of you, book a consult to learn more about working with me as your coach.

"I love the idea that anything that is meant for me cannot possibly pass me by… and anything that passes me by was never actually meant for me."

What you'll learn in this episode:

  • 8 methods that will help you practice self-acceptance

  • How engaging in mindfulness practices will allow you to observe yourself with acceptance

  • Gratitude is a huge key to self-acceptance and becoming your favorite you

  • Practicing acceptance is an ongoing journey - it will take time and patience

"By integrating acceptance into your daily life, you can experience greater peace and ease with yourself. You become more confident to be exactly you."

Mentioned in this episode:

Be sure to sign up for a consult to see if coaching with me is the right fit for you. Join me on a powerful journey to become your favorite you.

Listen to the full episode:

Read the full episode transcript

Hey, this is Melissa Parsons, and you are listening to the Your Favorite You Podcast. I'm a certified life coach with an advanced certification in deep dive coaching. The purpose of this podcast is to help brilliant women like you with beautiful brains create the life you've been dreaming of with intentions. My goal is to help you find your favorite version of you by teaching you how to treat yourself as your own best friend.

If this sounds incredible to you and you want practical tips on changing up how you treat yourself, then you're in the right place. Just so you know, I'm a huge fan of using all of the words available to me in the English language, so please proceed with caution if young ears are around.

Hello, my favorite Your Favorite You listeners!

Last week, I shared my thoughts on the difference between acceptance of yourself and the people and situations that are present in your life and tolerating something or someone you no longer want in your life. I got to thinking about the different ways that I have either practiced acceptance myself, or taught my amazing clients how to practice acceptance in their daily lives, and I wanted to share that with you all, too! 

So if you have not listened to episode 87: Acceptance vs. Tolerance I might start there, and then this will make more sense.

For those of you that are my current or former clients, if I missed anything, please message me and let me know so that I can correct myself or add to this list in a future episode!

OK - so here are some practical ways to incorporate acceptance into your  daily or weekly or whatever routine you might have:

This first one is still really difficult for me so I’m going to talk about it for awhile… My husband and sons will attest that I struggle with this one - and if you know me, this is not going to come as a surprise - It is Releasing the Need for Control: Telling myself that it is safe over and over again to no longer be a control enthusiast! Understand that there are many aspects of life beyond your control. Practice letting go of the need to control external circumstances, other people's actions, or outcomes. Instead, focus on what you can control—your own thoughts, your attitudes and emotions, and your responses.

As part of this releasing the need for control, you can challenge your control-seeking thoughts. Pay attention to your thoughts and beliefs around control. Notice when you have rigid expectations or a strong desire for things to go a certain way. You can challenge those thoughts by questioning their validity - “Is it true?” - and considering alternative perspectives.

As part of releasing the need for control you also will be best served by surrendering to the flow of life: You can actively cultivate an attitude of surrender and trust in the natural flow of life. Recognize that oftentimes things work out differently than you planned, and that's okay. Practice letting go of attachment to specific outcomes and embrace the idea that things will unfold as they are meant to. I love the idea that anything that is meant for me cannot possibly pass me by… and anything that passes me by was never actually meant for me.

Finally, in order to release the need for control you can adopt the idea of focusing on influence, not control. Shift your focus from trying to control external circumstances to focusing on what you can influence—your own thoughts, emotions, and actions. Direct your energy toward making intentional choices and responding mindfully to situations rather than trying to manipulate or control them.

Ok - so that was the first way to practice acceptance… and like I said, the one that I am working at on a daily basis. I don’t say this to shame myself, but simply as a way to reassure you that everyone has something that they are actively working on.The second way to practice acceptance is to increase your self-compassion. You can choose to treat yourself with kindness and self-compassion when you are faced with difficulties or if things don’t go the way you wanted… I would encourage you to acknowledge that being human means experiencing imperfections and setbacks. I would like to give you permission to give yourself compassion as a way to nurture acceptance and understanding toward yourself.

The third way to practice acceptance is to consider reframing some of your negative thoughts. Notice all of the negative or judgmental thoughts that you have about you and consciously decide to reframe them in a more accepting and compassionate way. It is possible for you to challenge your self-critical thoughts and replace them with more supportive perspectives. We work on this in my coaching containers quite a bit. We figure out why you have these self-critical thoughts first, before we seek to change anything.

Another way to practice acceptance is to recognize impermanence. If you think about it, nothing in life is permanent. Everything in life is impermanent, including emotions, relationships, and circumstances. Embracing impermanence helps foster acceptance by acknowledging that change is a natural and inevitable part of life. I have said so many times before and I will repeat it now. We are supposed to change over time.

A fifth method of practicing acceptance is to practice mindfulness and self-awareness. You can start to engage in mindfulness practices such as meditation, deep breathing/breathwork, and/or body scan exercises. These techniques help you cultivate present-moment awareness and observe your thoughts, emotions, and bodily sensations without judgment - also known as observing yourself WITH acceptance!

One of my favorite apps for people to get started on meditation is Insight Timer. There are a lot of free meditations there that are quick and great.

Another way of practicing acceptance is to cultivate non-resistance. When faced with challenging situations or emotions, practice non-resistance. Instead of fighting against or trying to control what is happening, allow it to be as it is. Recognize that resistance often amplifies our suffering and prevents acceptance. This resistance is completely within your control. I have an entire podcast about resisting your emotions. If you have not listened to that one, please go back when you have some time. It is episode 79 - Resisting Your Emotions.

The seventh thing that you can do - I should have probably said that these were in no particular order. I started with the one that is hardest for me to remember and practice… but these are in no particular order because this 7th one, practicing gratitude is a huge key to becoming your favorite you! You can cultivate a daily gratitude practice by reflecting on things you appreciate and are grateful for in your life. This practice shifts your focus toward acceptance and appreciation of what you have, rather than dwelling on what is lacking. So many of us can list off our pet peeves and our triggers in a moment. In contrast, it is harder for us to get in the practice of noticing the fabulousness that already exists all around us if we take the time to look for it. Of course the triggers are harder to find than the glimmers - but only because many of us have not spent decades searching for the glimmers… When you change your focus, you will find the glimmers of the beauty of the life you have created for yourself all around you. 

And finally, last, but certainly not least in your quest for practicing acceptance, I would encourage you to seek support for yourself.  You can choose to surround yourself with a supportive community and you can choose to seek professional help. Anything that we want to get really good at, we look to coaches and experts and people who have done these things before us! 

Connecting with others who foster acceptance and understanding can provide valuable encouragement and incredible guidance as you become your favorite version of yourself. Since you are a listener of my podcast, I would love to offer to be the person who supports you on your journey to seeing and being and accepting your favorite version of you. My group coaching containers are places that we are making this happen on a daily basis. I could not be more proud of the work that we do in the group.

Remember, practicing acceptance is an ongoing journey. It takes time and patience to cultivate this mindset. Be gentle with yourself and celebrate the progress you make along the way. By integrating acceptance into your daily life, you can experience greater peace and ease with yourself. You become more confident to be exactly you. You start to feel comfortable in your own skin. And you get to take Your Favorite You with you wherever you choose to go… and into any relationship that you want to see grow with love, connection, and acceptance. I think that is all for now. Again, if you are my client - current or former - if you think of anything that I missed, please message me and let me know so that I can correct myself and add to this list in a future episode!

OK folks - thanks for being here. See you next week! 

Hey, everybody, don't go quite yet. I want to let you know all the ways that you can work with me.

If you've been listening to this podcast and maybe especially you have listened to episodes where I interview my clients, and you are thinking like the older woman in the diner in the classic Meg Ryan, Billy Crystal film, When Harry Met Sally... In the film, Sally is proving a point to Harry by faking an orgasm while in public at a diner. Sally finishes, so to speak, and then takes a bite of her food. The older woman in the next booth says, "I'll have what she's having." If you've been thinking, "I'll have what she's having," this is your sign from the universe to schedule a consult with me.

I have a few spots available for one-on-one coaching with me. This is a space where I am laser focused on you and your brain for six months at a time. I will also be doing consults with women who want to join my next group coaching cohort, which will likely start in the spring of 2024. The way to contact me is to go to my website,, go to the Work with Me page and click “book now” to schedule your consult. I will look forward to hearing from you. Let's make 2024 your favorite year ever as you become Your Favorite You.



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