Self-Acceptance Exercises (List)

Self-acceptance is found to be very important for the overall wellbeing of an individual.

This blog mentions several self-acceptance exercises that would help you learn how to accept self.

Before we move on to self-acceptance exercises, let’s have a look at the definition of self-acceptance and acknowledge the importance of self-acceptance.

What is the Meaning of Self-Acceptance?

Self-acceptance is just as the title implies: the state of self-fulfillment. True acceptance of yourself embraces who you are, without certifications, conditions, or exclusions (Seltzer, 2008). 

According to Morgado and colleagues ( 2014):

“[Self-acceptance is] an individual’s acceptance of all of his/her attributes, positive or negative.”

This definition underlines the importance of all facets of the acceptance of self.

Actually accepting the good, important, or positive in yourself is not enough; to demonstrate genuine self-acceptance, you do have to tolerate the least favorable, the bad, and the unpleasant pieces of yourself.

When you find it’s impossible to recognize any of your self-detrimental qualities-you ‘re not incorrect!

It’s not easy to recognize the issues we really wish to do in ourselves, but it’s only by honestly embracing ourselves that we can really continue the cycle of positive self-improvement.

In other terms, first, we have to accept that we have unhealthy characteristics and behaviors before we begin our path towards change.

You should be optimistic about your life and yourself.

To maintain this positive aspect, you should also try following the Positive Psychology Exercises.

Why is Self Acceptance so Important?

Self-acceptance is vital to a life of fulfillment. It’s impossible to create genuine, satisfying relationships with others without self-acceptance.

This can inhibit our self-expression and stifle our freedom to offer affection and accept this. We risk feeling like friendships and intimate partnerships are fake, or superficial in doing so.

It could be isolating. By doing things in a certain way, we can lose ourselves, because we think that is indeed how it must be done.

In certain situations, we may be vulnerable to violence due to a lack of self-recognition and self-esteem.

Whether we have acceptance of ourselves, can also have a huge impact on how we live our lives. Lack of personal-acceptance can keep us away from carrying out meaningful careers.

It may be as easy as admitting, for starters, that you don’t like mathematics. For some other reason (maybe your parents are doctors, or maybe you feel scientists are making more money) you might feel you need to go into a science field.

So you might feel the need to opt for pharmaceutical studies. But what if you like designing things?

You might want to study design or go into a field where you can use your hands, such as carpentry or cosmetics.

We risk wasting our lives doing something that leaves us terribly miserable, without having to know ourselves embracing our interests and talents.

Self-Acceptance Exercises 

The following are some of the most effective exercises for enhancing self-acceptance in individuals:

1. Practice Relaxed Awareness

Unlike constant distraction, or focused focus, relaxed awareness is a soft consciousness of our thoughts, feelings, discomfort, personality-rating, and judgment, etc.

It’s a consciousness of our presence, and the flow of phenomena that occurs at this moment, including feelings and ideas and impulses from the outside.

For this activity, you have to close your eyes for a minute, and rather than pushing your thoughts away or trying to focus on your breath, just notice your thoughts and feelings and your body softly.

You may see negative thoughts or emotions, that’s all right. Just notice them, just look at them.

Don’t try to turn or push them away into positive thoughts. 

When you find it helpful you can do this exercise for 5 minutes a day, or up to 30 minutes.

2. Welcome What You Notice

You will note stuff as you cultivate positive mindfulness-pessimistic emotions, worries, good feelings, self-judgments, etc.

We tend to want to stop negative thoughts and feelings but it’s just a suppression, an avoidance, a negation of the negative.

Welcome these anomalies instead, welcome them in for a cup of tea, give them a kiss. They ‘re a part of your life and good.

If you feel bad about how you did exercise, that’s okay. Hug the bad feeling, give it warmth, let it stick around for a while. 

We create more discomfort when we run from those unpleasant feelings. See the good in them instead, and seek the chance. Feel okay with them.

3. Let Go of Rating Yourself

Another thing you’ll find is self-rating when you start paying attention to yourself. 

Compared to everybody else we evaluate ourselves, or at various issues, we rate ourselves as “good” or “bad,” or we rate ourselves as chubby or too naturally thin or unattractive. 

This is not an activity of much use. That doesn’t mean letting go of it, but just noticing it, and seeing what results from it.

Once you realize that self-rating causes you pain constantly, you’ll be pleased to let it go, in time.

4. Reflect on Your Past Achievements 

It’s normal to feel a little anxious when faced with a new job or obligation. Perhaps this is a career interview, or maybe you’re heading out for a first date.

If you start to doubt your abilities, reflect on your past accomplishments to feel more confident that this new challenge will be a success.

You’ve never experienced this before.

Even if you have persisting suspicions, take solace in the knowledge that if others did not think you have been cut out for it, you would not be in this new setting.

5. Learn to Change your Negative Self-Talk into Positive Affirmations 

When you are overwhelmed with self-doubt, you probably listen to the negative self-talk subconsciously.

Take control of your voice within, and turn negativity into positive. Reflect on what you might achieve instead of only dwelling on restriction.

Think of your strengths and what you’ve achieved. 

6. Create a Support System

Break apart from the ones who put you down, said Joyce Marter, LCPC, a psychotherapist and Urban Harmony member, LLC.

Then, she added, “Surround yourself with others who support you and trust in you.”

7. Forgive Yourself

Past feelings of guilt can stop us from self-acceptance. According to Howes, forgive, and move on.

It’s necessary to learn from the errors, make efforts to grow and embrace that you can’t change what happened, whether that’s of something you’ve done or a character peculiarity that has resulted in a social faux pas.

When the tinges of remorse resurface, Howes said: “I made the best decision with the information I had at the time.”

“In hindsight, the behavior or decision might not seem correct, but at the time it seemed like the best choice,” Howes added.

8. Remember Your Pure Potential! 

Every time you feel frustrated or have bad thinking, step back to see the broader picture; you’re made up of various positions, emotions, and feelings that come and go, all of which are optimistic.

Essentially you ‘re pure potential: Who do you become this year, this month, this week, today?

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

Recommended Books

The following is a list of some of the best books that would help you acknowledge ways to enhance self-acceptance.

These books are easily accessible on the internet.

Just select the book you wish to read, click it, and you will be redirected to the page from where you can access it.

How do you improve self-acceptance?

There are various ways to improve self-acceptance.

Some of these include accepting that yo judge yourself the most than others, being kind to yourself, confronting your fears bravely, accepting imperfections, staying positive, forgiving yourself, believing in yourself, not taking things personally, and not given up.

How do I practice self-approval?

Self-approval can be practiced by increasing awareness about one’s own actions, developing a greater sense of self-worth, accepting yourself as you are, accessing the accuracy of your beliefs, loving yourself, understanding why you need the approval of others, journaling your thoughts, and believing in yourself.

Why is it so hard to accept yourself?

It is very hard to accept oneself, this is because one needs to stop thinking that if he punishes himself for his negative thoughts, he would change.

It is just like the individual thinking he is weak because he feels anxious.

What does it mean to have self-acceptance?

Self-acceptance, according to Shepard (1979), the fulfillment or enjoyment of a person with himself, and is thought important for good mental health.

Self-acceptance involves self-understanding, an awareness of one’s strengths and weaknesses that is realistic, though subjective.

How do you just be yourself?

There are numerous ways by which a person can just be himself. Some of these ways include not aiming to please others, not worrying about the other people’s perspectives about you, increasing self-awareness, appreciating oneself, being confident for oneself, not thinking or feeling negative about oneself, forgiving oneself, and keeping hobbies that you enjoy doing. 

How do I come to acceptance?

You can come to acceptance by learning to support yourself, seeing things as they really are, not taking things personally, not confusing acceptance with preference, accepting things and getting used to them, and understanding the meaning of acceptance, which is to feel comfortable around things.

This blog mentioned various self-acceptance exercises that are a great source of learning how to accept oneself.

If you have any questions or queries regarding this blog, let us know through your comments. We will be glad to assist you.

If you’re a man, you might want to know different hobbies for men which they can do in their free time.

References 

What is Self-Acceptance? 25 Exercises + Definition and Quotes by Courtney E. Ackerman (2020)

11 Self Acceptance Exercises to rid Yourself of Guilt

Therapists Spill: 12 Ways to Accept Yourself – Psych Central

Self Acceptance Exercises – SlideShare

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