Radical Acceptance Coping Statements

Radical acceptance is a key in keeping my brain level throughout the roller coaster of life.

Radical acceptance is acknowledging “your present situation… without judging the events or criticizing yourself.” Thinking about your situation without feelings can ease the troubled feelings that may arise from whatever you’re dealing with.

In order to remind myself that I can accept whatever comes my way, I’ve curated a list of “Radical Acceptance Coping Statements” that I remind myself of.

  • The present is the only moment I have control over.
  • The present moment is perfect, even if I don’t like what’s happening.
  • Feelings aren’t facts.
  • Here and now only.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of other coping statements a person can use.

  • This is the way it has to be.
  • All the events have led up to now.
  • I can’t change what’s already happened.
  • It’s no use fighting the past.
  • Fighting the past only blinds me to my present.
  • It’s a waste of time to fight what’s already occurred.
  • This moment is exactly as it should be, given what’s happened before it.
  • This moment is the result of over a million other decisions.

Radical Acceptance Coping Statements

  • I/they did that because it was their ‘job’ at the time.
  • I know it is supposed to be this way right now because that’s how it is.
  • I don’t need to fight reality.
  • I acknowledge what is.
  • I/they have done what I could.
  • This is the reality now.
  • No amount of emotional or mental resistance can change what’s already happened.
  • The best way to prepare for the future is to accept the past and present.
  • I can accept (fill in the blank) if or when it happens in the future.
  • I am at peace with him/her/event/situation.
  • I can handle (fill in the blank).
  • I am, in fact, dealing with (fill in the blank), even if I sometimes think I’m not or think I can’t.
  • Worrying about it or having negative feelings about it won’t change it.
  • Everything has a cause.
  • I can let go of this.
  • Whether or not I accept this, it is still the reality. I can choose to accept it.
  • I can choose to deny reality and suffer, or accept reality and find more peace.
  • I can allow the world to be what it is.


Ultimately, shit happens, and there’s not always anything you can do about it … but you can accept it without criticism and judgement with a coping statement.

Do you have a favorite radical acceptance coping statement? Which one of the above strikes you the most? Can you write it on a Post-it note and tuck it away in your wallet for regular viewing? I bet you can.


This post inspired by a section in The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook.

Using a light box to help depression

screen-shot-2016-09-06-at-10-29-57-amAlmost two years ago I invested a smart $50 in my mental health purchasing a NatureBright SunTouch Plus Light and Ion Therapy Lamp from Amazon*.

Why use a phototherapy lamp?

The Mayo Clinic, Harvard Medical School and even Kaiser Permanente have provided studies and solid information about the benefits of using light therapy for treating (not curing) seasonal affective disorder (SAD), clinical depression, jet lag, and even sleep disorders.

Using a 10,000-lux light for 15-30 minutes in the morning when you first wake up is a proven way to alleviate irritating symptoms of multiple light- and time-related conditions. By allowing your circadian rhythm a little “extra” sunlight, you may find yourself sleeping more deeply, feeling more energized, and experiencing fewer symptoms of depression. The negative-ion addition to my SunTouch Plus Lamp claims to mimic the negative-ion atmosphere of some of nature’s most calming places. **I like to imagine it’s turning my office-air into fresh beach breezes.**

pixabaymoneybagShould I buy a SAD lamp?

A therapy lamp is not for everyone; specifically those who live with bipolar disorder are steered away from this therapy as it can increase bouts of mania. If you’re concerned at all about what the light may do to increase your energy or mood, please check with your care provider before investing.


How do I use a therapy lamp?

I use my NatureBright SunTouch Plus Light and Ion Therapy Lamp daily before 10am. I try to use it as soon as I wake up, but often times that means multiple interruptions making lunches, putting on socks, and encouraging an almost-four-year-old to brush ALL her teeth. I sit less than 18-inches from it, and though I don’t stare at it while it’s on, I do glance at it frequently. The automatic timer has four settings between 15 minutes and a full hour of 10,000-lux energizing light so you won’t even have to keep track of your own time!

calmHow will a phototherapy lamp make me feel?

I notice a change in my mood (an elevating change) within days of consistent use with my lamp. I sleep more soundly, I am more alert when I wake up naturally (and when Moo wakes me up with a whispered “It’s wake up time, Sarah!”), and I do feel better.

Will a sun lamp make me feel better?

Phototherapy is not for everyone, and I recommend you speak with your healthcare practitioner before you buy anything that could alter your mood. If you are interested, the NatureBright SunTouch Plus Light and Ion Therapy Lamp is $52 on Amazon right now. My lamp is two years old and still functioning at 100%; it’s a workhorse worth the investment.


What else do you want to know about my therapy lamp?

I’m an open book and want to help you find your best depression and anxiety treatment options!



*affiliate links; if you purchase (any) cool products on Amazon through this link, I make a little money at no extra cost to you.