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How Can Acceptance Help Us Move Forward?

As we’re working to heal from addiction and mental illness, a crucial part of our recovery is learning how to come to terms with all of the difficult things we’ve experienced in our lives. We’re often so full of anger, bitterness, resentment and grief that we feel unable to move forward. We feel unable to forgive both ourselves and the people who’ve hurt us. We hold grudges and carry our pain close to us, constantly reminding ourselves of it and reopening old wounds. We hate ourselves and our stories. We feel disappointed in ourselves and ashamed of ourselves. We look back on our pasts focusing only on the negative and painful aspects. When we constantly think and operate in these destructive ways, it becomes virtually impossible for us to move forward and make progress in our recovery, and therefore in any area of our lives. We feel stuck. We feel like we’re spinning our wheels. We give up on ourselves, and we lose hope.

An important part of making peace with our painful experiences is the idea of having acceptance. Many of us didn’t have the childhoods or caregivers we wish we had had. We might not have received the support, nurturing and unconditional love we deserved. We might still be angry about the trauma we experienced and resentful of the losses we sustained. We might still be poisoned by bitterness towards the people who hurt us. We might be so consumed with grief that we never allow ourselves to be happy or to envision the future we want for ourselves. Acceptance lets us see our pain and allow it to be there, without wishing we could take it away or change it. When we fight our pain, we give it more power over us. Acceptance helps us to reclaim that power. Acceptance also helps us to think more positively and more optimistically, looking for the pearls of wisdom we can glean from everything we go through. It enables us to see all of the valuable lessons that can come from our painful experiences, all of the epiphanies and revelations we can receive from our pain when we’re open to them.

Making peace with our pasts does not mean we condone, justify or make excuses for the difficult things we’ve experienced. It doesn’t mean we let ourselves or the people who’ve hurt us off the hook. It means we summon our inner strength and courage in order to find the deeper meaning and purpose behind our pain, so that we can use it to make us stronger and more resilient, allowing us to move forward with hopefulness.

At The Guest House Ocala, we have personal recovery experience and over 12 years in the recovery industry. We have helped countless people recover, and we’re here to help you too. Call 855-483-7800 today for more information.