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.
Since I’m working on Making some changes around Eleventh Street, I’ve been spending quite a bit of time offline doing some old school pen and paper writing.
What am I writing lately?
A blog business plan!
I invested my first bit of effort into research. The question “What do I need to do first?” led me to resources for infopreneurs by Regina. I quickly located her clear, simple, and easy-to-understand instructions on How to write a blog business plan like an expert.
There is something comforting to me about using a notebook and pen to develop my ideas, and now six pages of my current bullet journal are filled with musings about my vision and my ideal reader and blog categories. I’m overwhelmed thinking about blog products and services I could offer my ideal readers; addressing affiliates, partnerships, and sponsors before I’ve even decided whether I’ll keep this blog name* is intimidating.
Fleshing out what I want, where I see myself, and what I believe Eleventh Street Lot can accomplish is eye-opening; I have dreams and goals for this place!
What do my blog dreams involve?
Words – books, reading, writing, and my own original ones
Home Ec -cooking, recipes, groceries, and budgeting
Crafting – photography, handmade cards, journaling, coloring, and collages
Health – fitness, food, mental health, self-care, and self-improvement
What else would you like to see when you walk down Eleventh Street?
*Eleventh Street Lot has a soft spot in my heart, but the name is a mouthful, there are multiple ways to type it (after hearing it, do I use the number or the word eleven?), and I am clarifying a mental image of what the lot on 11th Street consists of.
Since I’m not going back to work part- or full-time any time soon, I have to find things to occupy my time in productive, healthy, and family-oriented contributions. Some of those things are easier to add to my resume than others. Either way, whatever I choose to do, I am choosing to do it all the way and all the way well.
Thinking about what I do for a living …
- slaying the laundry
- scrubbing dishes
- meal planning, preparation, and cooking
- cleaning the house
- Mooster’s bathtime (my facilitation of this became a ritual in our house)
Then there’s some other stuff that I do to keep myself busy and living …
- mechanical turking – a great article from Salon explaining why I work for $1.45 an hour sometimes
- writing the next great American novel – did you know I’m writing a book? I am. It lives inside my head … and a little bit of it now lives in one of my Moleskine Cahier journals. My novel involves a lot of research (which I love) and connects to my own personal history in a few ways, so I’m feeling good about where it’s going.
- photography – whether it’s taking photographs of things in nature, of my Mooster, or of the food I’m cooking, I truly do love to snap pictures. I added my Instagram feed to the blog because it’s become that important to me.
- working out, drinking water, and eating well – One of my invisible illnesses really gets in the way of these three, so it’s become a bigger priority in the past couple of weeks. I’ve committed to three weeks of heightened water intake and daily workouts, so we’ll see if I can manage!
- getting enough rest – yes, this is important in my life; I don’t live well without sleep. This job is one of my most imperative – I cannot handle taking care of everyone and everything else unless I’m getting seven to nine hours of sleep daily. Unfortunately, I can’t function without seven or more hours. (I wish I could.)
These things I do I do well. I own what I can, and so my dinners are multi-colored with vegetables, hearty starches and seared meats. I took Coop on a date with my mechanical turking bonuses (and got summer clothes for Moo with the income). My words are thoroughly researched and edited before I share them. The laundry is done well and regularly and my people rarely go anywhere with a wrinkle on them. I #ownwhatIcan and do the things I do do well and completely.
I own what I can. It’s one simple way I am learning to live with my disability.
I’m fascinated by food. I know where the fascination comes from (a piece of writing for another day, though), but this seems to be going deeper.
As I’ve used cooking to heal with this long bout of depression and anxiety, I realized that
- I’m a good cook
- I enjoy cooking
- There is magic involved in cooking
Then I came across Netflix’s series Cooked based on Michael Pollan’s book Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation and my mind was blown. All of these food historians, food scientists, chefs, and foodies come together and share how cooking has shaped humans.
I’m fascinated by the idea that cooking makes us human.
Humans are the only species who cooks food to ease the eating process.
grilled pork loin with apples and cranberries
We’ve figured out that it’s tastier, less time-consuming (and teeth-consuming), and better for our bodies to cook food before chewing it up. We probably stumbled upon an accidentally bar-be-qued warthog in a forest fire and thought it smelled amazing. We probably took a sniff and our mouths watered. We probably took a bite and realized that cooked pork is an amazing taste. We then might have added crab apples, pine needles, and other herbs and realized the taste was enhanced. We probably learned that ginger, pimento, and cumin add flavors and feelings to pork.
We’ve developed hundreds of cooking methods, millions of add-ons to our basic dishes, and recipes we lovingly and routinely pass through generations of cooks.
Cooking has changed the lives of every human on Earth. Cooking is fascinating. Be prepared for more cooking knowledge to appear around here … cooking is my self-care.
What are you fascinated by?