By Z. Hereford
Acceptance is necessary for coming to terms with that which we have no control over or cannot change.
Life is not always fair. Things happen. Situations don't always work out the way we want them to.
It does not mean being complacent or denying what is. It means to be willing to see things as they are.
How do we handle it?
We do not deny that unfortunate circumstances exist and that life doesn't always go our way; nor do we fall apart in helplessness and give up.
Admittedly the first reaction to extreme difficulty or tragedy is often the desire to fall apart and give up.
Even denial seems to be a better option than having to face calamity.
However, after we get over the initial blow and shock to the system we have to make a decision.
Do we let the event incapacitate us, or do we accept what we cannot changeand make the best of the situation?
There is no question that acceptance doesn't come easily. It might even be necessary to take time to process what has happened, put in perspective or just contemplate it for a while.
Talking to empathetic friends or getting counseling is also beneficial, but at some point we have to come to terms with a situation and accept it.
Most psychological suffering is caused by avoidance or escape from life's challenges.
We cannot avoid problems .
We must face them, and by coming to terms with them, we alleviate unnecessary suffering.
As soon as we accept a situation we cannot change, we free ourselves from it and it becomes easier to handle.
As the famed humanist psychologist Carl Rodgers said:
"The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change."