Happiness can only exist in acceptance. – George Orwell
Every single moment in life offers us a choice: we can either be in the moment and accept what is happening, or we can resist it. This is a lesson that life tends to present to us over and over. Whether it’s weather throwing a wrench into our plans, or a friend or co-worker not cooperating with our wishes, gracefully accepting what is can be challenging.
Resistance is part of human nature. We want things to be a certain way, and when they’re not, we start complaining. Spring was slow in coming to this part of the world this year, and grumbling about the weather became a favorite pastime here. I finally realized after the umpteenth time of thinking or saying “I’m so sick of cold weather” how much of an energy drain it is to resist something you can’t control.
Acceptance is a choice
While we can’t always control what is happening in our lives or in the world around us, we can choose how we react. We can choose to accept what is happening or we can struggle against it. Accepting what is will result in a peaceful state of mind, while struggle will only lead to misery.
Acceptance does not mean that we agree with what is happening, and it does not preclude change. In fact, acceptance is usually the first step toward lasting change.
A positive mindset
Life doesn’t always give us what we want, no matter how positive we think, but a positive mindset will help us embrace what is happening. Acceptance is the springboard to dealing with challenges in a more productive, and ultimately more peaceful way. I believe that every challenge comes with a lesson, and finding the reason behind why something is happening can make a big difference in how you deal with it.
Acceptance is not an easy practice, but it is a rewarding one. Cats seem to be good at it. Perhaps it’s because they have mastered living in the moment, and acceptance is about mindfulness and being present.
Accepting what is
It turned out that once I embraced accepting that spring will unfold at its own pace rather than follow my schedule, I found myself appreciating the season with more joy. I found myself slowing down in general rather than trying to rush through life, trusting that things will unfold in their own time. As of this writing, spring has finally arrived in all its glory, and temperatures are approaching my ultimate comfort zone of the low 80’s.
And I look to Allegra and Ruby for clues. Even though they may complain about the lack of sun puddles on a cool, cloudy day, they quickly find another comfy spot to nap in rather than being unhappy.
Is accepting what is hard for you?