How to Accept Yourself Fully the Way You Are

With the everyday pressures and expectations you have to deal with, sometimes it’s challenging to accept yourself fully the way you are.

It’s easy to find examples of people who have lost their true identity because they want to fit in with others.

Unconditional self-acceptance is necessary to live a happy life and to have good mental health.

Learning to accept yourself fully the way you are requires courage and a healthy level of self-esteem.

1-Minute Summary Video

What Does It Mean to Accept Yourself Fully?

To accept yourself fully means to have complete acceptance of who you are without the need for approval from others.

It’s not about seeking external validation or trying to impress others by being someone you’re not or.

Instead, it’s about knowing you have flaws and weaknesses like everyone, and every learning experience allows you to get to know more about yourself.

It’s knowing when you make a mistake, it does not make you a bad person. You see it as an opportunity to improve yourself without generating negative emotions.

Why Is It Important to Learn to Accept Yourself?

When you accept yourself fully the way you are, it will give you freedom to express yourself openly and honestly.

Other reasons to accept yourself fully include:

  • You will become more mindful of your negative traits.
  • You will know your negative aspects and focus on improving them.
  • You will experience greater inner peace.
  • You will deal with a negative experience or a difficult time with greater self-awareness.
  • You will develop greater self-confidence.
  • You will become more resilient and build inner strength.
  • You will not let negative statements or criticism affect your mental or emotional well-being.
  • You will learn to focus on the positive aspects of yourself instead of focusing on your undesirable traits.
  • You will be more intentional when you spend time with people and also focus on their positive aspects.
  • You will generate positive emotions and feel satisfied with your path in life.
accept yourself fully

Factors That Can Cause You Not to Accept Yourself Fully

Reasons you may not accept yourself fully include:

  • You received a lot of criticism as a child.
  • You had unpleasant experiences with authority figures such as carers, teachers, managers or bosses.
  • You may have experienced abuse as a child.
  • You feel unlovable and don’t know how to fit in with others.
  • You received punishment for making mistakes.
  • You did not grow up with positive role models.
  • You were told to be more like other people.
  • You lacked self-belief and confidence growing up.
  • You don’t want to lose friends and would rather go along with the crowd.

Learning to accept yourself fully begins with changing your self-talk and using positive statements about yourself.

5 Ways to Accept Yourself Fully the Way You Are

Learning to accept yourself does not need to be a difficult task. Doing certain self-acceptance exercises or techniques is a great starting point.

Here are five ways or things you can do to accept yourself fully the way you are, so you feel happier, more confident, and have greater inner peace.

  1. Accept you have flaws just like everyone else. You will make mistakes and let yourself down often. That’s what makes you human. True self-acceptance comes from letting go of the false concept that there’s something wrong with you.
  2. Know other people’s opinion of you does not make it true. A useful way to operate is to not get too high when something positive happens, and not get too low when something negative happens. When you experience criticism, instead of taking it personally, see it as someone’s opinion or point of view. You can use it as feedback to improve yourself.
  3. Get help if you know you struggle to be yourself with others. Sometimes, with years of poor conditioning, you may create deep-rooted negative beliefs. It’s okay to ask for help to change your opinion of yourself. Working with a professional trained in self-acceptance or unhealthy self-esteem issues will make a difference.
  4. Let go of the comparison trap. It’s rare to compare yourself to someone and conclude you’re exactly the same. Everyone’s on their journey in life, just like you. A better strategy is to compare yourself to who you have been and who you want to become, and what it will take for you to become that person.
  5. Remember, you’re not alone and others struggle with this issue too. Cultural expectations and pressures affect others, too. One way you can help yourself is to support others who are struggling with similar issues and let them know they’re not alone. Showing vulnerability is a powerful way to connect with others and encourage them to be themselves.

Final Thoughts

Instead of trying to fit in to gain validation, learning to accept yourself fully the way you are will make you a better person.

If you don’t accept yourself fully, you will not be true to yourself or live an authentic life, and experience more negative emotions.

When you practice true self-acceptance, you will not waste mental energy figuring out who you need to be in every situation you find yourself in. That is ultimate freedom.

Action Step: During your next conversation or social situation, pay close attention to how you behave. Notice the thoughts you think about how to communicate, observe your emotions, and what you do if you feel the urge to fit in to please others.

Question: What are other ways you can accept yourself fully the way you are?

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Neel Raman

Neel Raman

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