Accepting who we are TODAY

A bride-to-be recently asked me how to lose 100 pounds in less than a year. This will be an exceptionally daunting task; she’s getting married in less than a year, working full-time, building a house, just adopted a puppy, and she’s also in school.

I said she has two options:

  1. Carve out time to prepare meals and work out five to six days a week in thirty to sixty minute sessions

    OR

  2. Buy a dress that fits today

Frankly, I’d love to see her take the latter option because it would be the most (no pun intended) fitting. She’s gorgeous, and all her friends, family and her beau know that she’s wedding-ready right now.

A friend of mine recently shared that she was body-shamed at the grocery store. A woman told her that she obviously goes to the gym way too much, and that it must be detrimental to her family.

The woman who made that comment has no idea that my friend is in her late 40s, is training for a body sculpting competition, and that she has spent the last several years revolutionizing her lifestyle. She’s lost over 60 pounds, gets up at 3AM to work out, has a demanding job, and is fully invested in caring for her family.

There’s been a LOT of controversy recently in one of the athletic communities that I’m involved in, and a lot of focus has been put on women’s bodies. People mock women who rock a full-figured body, regardless of the fact that they are stellar and highly effective athletes. Tall women are ridiculed. Women around five feet tall are scoffed and told they’re ineffective. Athletes I work with have been told to lose up to half their body weight. One of these women left the team that told her to do this and is thriving with another league. Another woman that I know actually did lose the weight, and impacted her effectiveness drastically. She had to completely shift her playing style.

No matter how many outside opinions we hear, we must realize that not all of them are correct. Many of them are flat-out WRONG. Ragen Chastain is in remarkable physical condition, and yet she constantly receives pushback from athletic and online communities.

Whether we like it or not, we are stuck living in our own skin. Certainly we can work on toning and conditioning, but we start where we are today. We don’t start in perfect bodies. We start where we are now. Also, we may never have perfect bodies (if there is such a thing. Transparency clause: Many bodybuilders and high-performance athletes also suffer from body dysmorphic disorder).

We don’t live perfectly, but we learn to accept where we are and realize that it’s good enough and that WE are good enough.

The above examples illustrate that everyone has an opinion about how we should live our lives. We can understand that. We all know how other people should live their lives! Why don’t they just act right?!?

We can’t change other people and we can’t do much about the input we receive.

Our job is to accept what serves us, and walk away from the things that don’t.

It’s pretty validating when we hit a milestone. Many people will commend us on our success. Some will even walk the path with us and experience their own successes. But there’s always that person (or even people)! That person who is so miserable in their lives that they don’t have anything positive to say about anyone or anything. Or, they say it in some backhand, snarky and shitty way.

Life doesn’t get perfect when we reach a goal. Life still gives us plenty of challenges. We may react in a way that knocks us down a few rungs. We get back up. We overcome. Then, we take another step back.

We don’t become perfect. Sure, we get better as we progress, but we may never quite master what we’ve worked SO hard on.

Where does that leave us?

Last week’s message touched on acceptance. The message of acceptance is both TIMELESS and NEEDED. So many amazing and positive things happen in our lives when we accept ourselves AND the world around us.

When we accept ourselves, we judge less. That makes the world MUCH easier to live in.

When we accept ourselves, we don’t give a damn when someone gives us their unsolicited opinion.

When we accept ourselves, we don’t feel the need to project, act out, and get crazy (driving like a maniac, hitting people, stealing, lying, cheating and so forth).

Last week I mentioned that acceptance is the foundation of my life and my platform. As sexy (maybe even more marketable, too) as it would be shift my focus and go for a flashier topic/focus, I have ZERO poker face and I wouldn’t get away with it. This message is necessary, and every talk, class, and workshop I’ve given and experienced has had tremendous impact. It might not be sexy or flashy today, but dammit I will keep sharing this message until it catches like wild fire or until I stop breathing.

The reason why we have so much violence is because of the lack of acceptance.

The reason we have substance abuse issues is because of the lack of acceptance.

See a trend?

We don’t have to like ourselves, other people, and the world around us in order to accept it. These are not mutually exclusive; we can dislike something and still accept it.

Where does that leave us? What do we do?

We start by seeing ourselves for who we TRULY are.

We have AMAZING potential! Let’s not be shackled by our past – let’s carve a path NOW, with what we have NOW, to create a spectacular future for ourselves! We don’t have to move on from our mistakes – our job is to move FORWARD with our lives!

Every single one of us has flaws. That doesn’t make us bad. It makes us human. We may not like the discomfort we experience in our lives, but we can lean into it and ACCEPT it.

I want to close this by putting out a reminder that we can both accept ourselves AND aim to be the BEST version of ourselves. In the next post, I’ll go into more detail about how confidence is acting from a place of acceptance, and how arrogance is acting from a place of fear and denial.

For now, understand that right now, we have everything we need in order to succeed. If we don’t have it yet, we have the ability to get it. What’s stopping us from getting it? Our resistance it it. That resistance is firmly rooted in a lack of acceptance.

Let that sink in, dear one 😉

As always, I’m giving you love, support, and encouragement in all of your endeavors ♥
– Karen

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