Choose Total Acceptance: It’s a Radical Way to Peace and Harmony

Choose Total Acceptance: It’s a Radical Way to Peace and Harmony

Last week, we wrote about differences and acceptance. Okay, let’s say you have come to understand the importance of acceptance in peaceful harmonious relationships. But how about total acceptance; do you understand what we mean by that, and can you see yourself applying it?

We have found that total acceptance is the defining difference between not just experiencing better relating, but for a living peace that provides deep soul satisfying relationships. This is a radical concept, yet once understood, it can become a very natural way of being with another.

Whenever we write about total acceptance, we feel called upon to quickly define what it is not. So, to get that out of the way first: it’s not allowing abuse, it’s not about accepting the unacceptable and it is not relating through power and dominance.

It does call for one underlying factor to be present: that you share core values; those upon which you base your life, your actions and decisions, even when you are not clearly aware of what they are. When we say match, we mean that they fit together, are the same or complementary, and not opposed.

Of course to practice this, you must be aware of what your core values are. We have written at length on this and you can find many helpful blogs by searching under that topic.

Working with core values will help you to understand areas that may be causing a feeling of disconnection or discomfort in any given relationship. It will also enable you to look at things that appear to be causing problems even though they are not a conflict of values. When this is the case, ask yourself, if this is not opposed to my core values, why is it disturbing me so much? Prioritizing issues according to their alignment with your values can help you learn things about yourself and work on areas that may be getting in the way of peaceful relating.

When your relationships are not based on getting what you want in the way you want it; when you do not have to control what another thinks or how they say or do things, it is remarkably freeing. When you are not busy with reshaping the other person, you can relax and appreciate who they are and how they are. You can be enriched and enlarged by another’s approach. Most of all, you can be peaceful within, and bring that peace to others.Strive to offer total acceptance, the best gift you can give #quote #relationships Click To Tweet

The experience of being fully accepted is profound. Our first book had a metaphor about this:

If you know that there is nothing on a dance floor, no thumbtacks or other dangerous items, you can be free to dance about, flying freely through the air, unmindful of where you come down. As soon as you introduce one thumbtack somewhere on the floor, you are no longer free to leap and prance freely. You must always be careful you don’t come down on the tack and injure yourself. This very knowledge inhibits you all the time, even if it’s just a little bit.

This is the same within relationships. The more thumbtacks that appear in the exchange, the more you must be careful, defended, withdrawn, on alert. Once you reach the threshold of 100%, there is peace and joy and no busyness in the mind about whether you are in or out, or whether the person is right or wrong, or needs changing or adjusting. You accept yourself and the other and go forward in the freedom that this way of being brings.

We liked this image so much that we considered titling the book “No Thumbtacks: Secrets of a Successful Relationship.” This analogy has served us well, but we have used it so often that we wanted another metaphor, and in our 2010 discussions for that book, we found this:

A partner who is only ninety-something percent accepting gives the feeling of being on a leash; you can run free most places, but at some point, a violent tug will occur, so the response is to run cautiously, or not at all. But at 100%, a transforming quality occurs.

We can’t emphasize enough the importance of this. We refer to total acceptance as the 100% factor because it is so different from things being good 90% or 99% of the time. As you come to realize that you are fully accepted, a delicious sense of freedom settles over you. You can do the things that you choose to do, and express yourself without having to modify your responses to gain the approval of others. (This isn’t, of course, a license to subject other people to the consequences of your childhood trauma.)

So offer total acceptance in your close relationships. Your loved ones’ rights and desires are just as valid as yours. You will see yourself grow out of habits and patterns that do not serve you in your interactions. You will find a change in your interest in others and in your ability to listen, hear and see them. You will naturally find yourself less wrapped up in your own ideas of how things should be and more able to be open to the unique perspective of those you intimately relate to.

This radical form of acceptance is very powerful and will transform the nature of all your deep relationships. Strive to offer total acceptance, the best gift you can give.

Photo credit: Nebula Dance Lab, Daniel J Wade Photography 2020

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4 Comments on “Choose Total Acceptance: It’s a Radical Way to Peace and Harmony

  1. Yes! Even one thumbtack on the floor changes it all! So true! I call this radical acceptance. I appreciate this blog as it re-affirms the most peaceful approach to moving through the very difficult terrain in a landscape of critical surroundings. However I do find there is a level of deep surrender. There is point when I realize there will not be agreements reached and I choose to accept that I stand with peace, which is the best choice I can make where disagreement is obvious. I radically accept that the differences presented are best left to a higher power and I choose peace and accept what is presented. While I don’t engage in an argument, I do feel saddened when the possibility of unity disappears. I accept this posture and move into gratitude that I have the tools to stay centered and calm and loving.

  2. I’ve been thinking about acceptance lately and your blog tied right into what I’m learning. Accepting yourself is as important as accepting other people. And it truly is a relief.

  3. Too many people are unable, psychologically, to “yield”.
    The basic truth is the more you give, the more you get. There is no loss in giving yourself up to a lifetime partner, because when mutual, there is only gain.

  4. You wrote: You will naturally find yourself less wrapped up in your own ideas of how things should be and more able to be open to the unique perspective of those you intimately relate to.

    “All the suffering there is in this world arises from wishing our self to be happy. All the happiness there is in this world arises from wishing others to be happy.” ? Shantideva
    I am not certain this is totally correct, but for me, that passage aligns nicely with analyzing individual relationships.

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