Acceptance without judgement
I was listening to a song the other day by Allen Stone called ‘naturally’, and I was struck by the lyrics of the chorus;
‘Flower, flower, growing free All your petals, they look good to me You're just the way that you should be You're beautiful naturally, you're beautiful naturally’
It made me stop and think, that we see things in nature as beautiful, sometimes they can be imperfect, but still beautiful and natural. We never admire a flower but say; ‘I wish this flower was a bit bigger, or more pink’, we accept the flower the way it is and we can admire and appreciate it for its differences to other flowers.
So why then, do we find it so easy to judge ourselves and name all of our imperfections?
‘my bum is too big, belly too wobbly, hair too messy’ etc. It’s so easy to get caught up in these thoughts and not only believe them about ourselves, but believe this is how we appear to others, this then starts a cycle of anxiety reflecting on how we feel about ourselves.
What if we could accept ourselves non-judgementally?
In life, we are constantly making judgements, ‘is this good or bad’ ‘right or wrong’ ‘fair or unfair’ ‘urgent or not urgent’, many of these judgements are justified, helping us to make better decisions. However, when we practice mindfulness and become aware of our thoughts, we can start to notice judgements about ourselves creeping in, bringing awareness intentionally when we have a thought, can help us to gain perspective on if it’s really a useful or helpful thought. I have found in my own mindfulness practice that I can now start to notice creeping thoughts, and the use of self compassion and self soothing as a way to stop them taking over has been really helpful.
It’s not easy, we all do it, we all judge ourselves in one way or another!
Lets try and be a bit kinder to ourselves and the way we speak to ourselves, more accepting and less judgemental. After all, we are not judging nature all around us, we’re accepting it as it is; how freeing it would be if we could start accepting ourselves for who we truly are!
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