Contrary to popular belief, developing self-acceptance isn’t some kind of technique that you have to internalise or develop it’s actually a by-product of a much deeper mechanism that’s been at play all your life.
We’re all looking for things in our life.
We want stuff, and when we get it we fell good. It’s a no-brainer. Think about the car you’ve always wanted. If you got that .. how would you feel?
Or even, think about the girl of your dreams.
If you got her, how would you feel?
Now, if you’re reading this, I’m going to guess that there are things in your life that you want that you don’t have.
Correct? If you had everything then you wouldn’t be reading this, you’d be playing with everything you’ve ever wanted.
And because there are things you think you want but don’t have, it’s pretty hard to accept yourself, as you are, right?
But what if that changed?
What if you found a way to get everything that you’d ever wanted.
Do you think you’d be able to accept yourself then?
You can probably guess where I’m going with this.
Achieving self-acceptance is all about proving to yourself that you can get what you want.
When you can do that, then you will accept yourself as you are.
If you can’t get yourself what you want, then you’re not going to accept yourself.
Think of it like this: if you walked into a car yard and told the salesman that you were going off road through forest and sand dunes and you needed a car, and he tried to sell you a sports car, are you going to accept it?
Of course not. Because it’s not going to do the job you want it to do. It can’t get you what you want.
You’re going to want a big 4WD. It’s pretty simple.
But let’s say your situation was different. You walk into the car yard but this time you’re not going to be going off road through forests and sand dunes.
This time you’ve moved into a cramped apartment block in the city with no off-street parking and petrol prices went through the roof.
If he tried to sell you a 4WD are you going to want it? Are you going to accept it? No, because it’s not going to be able to get you what you want.
It’s not going to be easy to park and it’s going to chew through the petrol.
If something is able to achieve its purpose then you will accept it. If it can’t, then you won’t.
It’s not rocket surgery.
This is the secret here. If you can show yourself that you can get everything you’ve ever wanted, then it’s natural that you’ll accept yourself.
This is the point where most guys say “Well, so you’re saying that in order to achieve self-acceptance, I have to be able to walk into a bar and be able to get any chick?”
Well, that all depends…
But before I touch on that, let’s take a step back and touch on the most important part of this whole discussion: what are you looking for?
Self-acceptance happens when you’re able to get yourself what you’re looking for. So what are you looking for?
I know this might sound like a big question, so before you answer, consider this: The core of any desire is a feeling.
For everything that you’re looking for in life, you’re not actually after that object, you’re after the feeling that you’ve associated with that object.
Here’s a little exercise for you to try.
Write down a list of everything that you can think of that you desire: hot women, money, cars, power, control, whatever you want.
Then, after you’ve written down that list, imagine yourself with each one and pay attention to how you’d feel if you got it.
Write the answer down next to each one, then see if you can find a common theme.
Seriously, do it. It’ll open your eyes.
I’m about to spoil it for you…
It was Aristotle that first said that happiness was the pursuit of life.
Everything else in life was a means to an end, happiness was the only end in itself.
The word you came up with might be different to ‘happiness’ but for everyone, it’s some feeling of desirable emotional state.
Now that’s out of the way, let’s get back to that question:
“Are you saying I have to be able to walk into a bar and get any chick?”
No, I’m not. I’m saying that you need to be able to get yourself what you want when you want it to develop self-acceptance.
It’s only that you’ve associated happiness with getting a hot chick that you think you need to do that to develop self-acceptance.
Getting a hot chick to feel happy is part of one of three primary pathways to happiness.
I’m going to go through the three VERY briefly here. They might make sense to you, they might not.
If you haven’t experienced them, it’s kind of hard to imagine how they would feel but don’t worry. It’s not an issue. Just being aware that they exist can be of huge benefit.
Also, there’s nothing wrong with any of these pathways. They’re just a way of looking at the world. I’m not having a go at anyone for using any of them, I’m simply pointing them out.
‘Getting’ is the label I use to describe the pathway where you think that you need to get things from the external environment to be happy (yes, I’m very creative with the labels).
This is usually in the form of all the fun things that the great marketing machines of our western society throw at us..
..money, jewellery, holidays, cars, women, big houses, all those things that we’re supposed to collect so that we can finally be happy.
The underlying basis of this pathway is that the person perceives that their emotional state is controlled by the external environment and so to be happy, you then have to take control of the external environment.
When you have power over the external environment, then you will have power over your emotional state.
‘Doing’ is the label I use to describe the pathway where you think that you simply do the things you enjoy to get the happiness you want out of life.
This is the form of happiness that comes from undertaking activities that are intrinsically rewarding to you, regardless of what other people think of them.
It might be dancing, singing, football, cards, whatever it is that brings you happiness simply from taking action, regardless of the outcome you achieve.
(If it’s based on the outcome, it falls into the ‘getting’ category because you’re relying on your ability to control the external environment).
The underlying basis of this pathway is that the person perceives that relying on the external environment will never get them what they desire and they realise that in order to have the happiness they want, they have to do what they want to do.
They don’t place responsibility for their emotional state on anyone else’s shoulders or on any outcome, they simply take control of their happiness.
‘Creating’ is the label I use to describe the pathways where the happiness you experience comes from making the world a ‘better’ place.
Now, when I say ‘better’, I mean increasing the amount of love and happiness for every person in the world, regardless of who they are, what they do, what they look like, etc…
A person at this place has all the happiness that they need and desires to share it with those around them.
They know that happiness comes from within and so, therefore, they don’t need anything outside themselves to be happy.
They can simply give happiness and love freely to those around them without requiring anything in return.
Now, here’s the clincher: what do you think the different obstacles and benefits to experiencing happiness that each pathway produces?
If your sense of happiness is based on getting things from outside you, how much control do you have over that? How easily are you able to control your happiness? How easy would it be to develop self-acceptance?
And how do you think this affects your interactions with women? If you think you need to get her to be happy, how needy, clingy, and outcome dependent are you going to be?
But what if you followed the doing pathway? How much control do you think you’d have over your levels of happiness? How easy would it be to develop self-acceptance?
And how do you think this would affect your interactions with women? How needy, clingy, and outcome dependent would you be?
But what if you followed the creating pathway? How much control do you think you’d have over your levels of happiness? How easy would it be to develop self-acceptance?
And how do you think this would affect your interactions with women? How needy, clingy, and outcome dependent do you think you’d be?
So, this is how you develop self-acceptance. You prove to yourself that you can get what you want out of life.
When you can give yourself everything that you’ve looked for, then self-acceptance is a by-product. All the issues you face in developing self-acceptance are due to the different pathways you’re using.
Change the pathway, change your levels of self-acceptance. Simple as that.