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Acceptance or Resignation?


A lot of us aren’t happy with where we are in our lives at the moment. We aren’t satisfied with what we’re doing or where we happen to be or what we are. We here so often that we need to accept ourselves as we are and where we are. Most of us fight this notion. I sure do.

I reread Women, Food, and God by Geneen Roth last week (one big long string of Aha! moments. Read it.) and she mentioned that accepting is not the same as resigning yourself to a situation. It doesn’t mean that you give up and tell yourself that things will never change, or even worse, that you can’t change things. I think most of us think that acceptance involves giving up, so no wonder we resist it!

Accepting is acknowledging where you are and realizing that it’s ok for now. You may still want to change, especially if you don’t like your current situation. By all means, work hard to change if that’s what you really want, just don’t beat yourself up for where you are.

Acceptance is a change of attitude, that’s all. It’s not quitting. It took me awhile to let this sink in, but I realized that it’s something that I’ve always known on some level. I’ve never created significant change in my life until I accepted where I was first.I had to love myself the way I was and realize that I had to be where I was, because that’s where I happened to be. That situation had something to teach me. I accepted that knowledge, but I still wanted to change. Change happened pretty spontaneously after that.

Whenever I my situation and struggled against it, I got even more stuck. It’s like struggling when you’re sinking in quicksand (the movies always say that’s a bad idea) and sinking even faster.

What do you want to change in your life? What do you need to accept?

I’ll go first.

  • I accept that I need to have a job right now when I’d rather be a full-time artist and writer. Luckily, I enjoy my job, but I’d still rather do my own thing. It’s ok though. This job takes care of me, and I’m glad to have it. I’ll still work toward my goal, but I’m happy with what I’m doing right now.
  • I accept that I don’t have the money to travel the world right now, but obviously, world travel isn’t what I need at the moment or I’d have it. I can love my life anyway. I’d still like to travel and I’ll work toward that goal, but I won’t snub the joys of home.
  • I accept that I have about 10 extra pounds of “winter coat” around my hips and thighs. This is a little heavier than what I’m comfortable with, but it’s ok for now. I’ll still love and take care of my body and I’ll trust it to even things out on its own.
  • I accept that it’s still winter even though I’d really like it to be spring. We’ve had a lovely springy week and now there’s about six inches of snow on the ground and temperatures have dropped. I’ll take whatever moisture we can get for a nice green summer, and I’ll embrace a few more weeks of layers and hot soup.

I’ll accept these things, but I also expect change. I think the distinction here is simply attitude, because forcing change does not work. One cannot reach their natural weight by hating his or her body now. One can’t create a thriving career by refusing to acknowledge the starting point, where she is now.

How about you? What are you accepting right now? What does acceptance mean to you?


Autumn Pumpkin-Pecan Bread and Attitude

I don’t feel like dedicating an entire post to my attitude today, so I’ll give you a quick summary of what I’ve worked on this week, plus a treat 🙂

For the past two weeks, I’ve been working on improving my attitude toward my job, my body, my limits, and my life by following these guidelines:

Dress nicely. And shower every day. It’s amazing what not feeling like a sweaty mess can do for your confidence and energy.

-Don’t let myself off the hook. Exercise anyway. Write every day. “I don’t feel like it” isn’t an excuse, and I’ll be glad I did later.

-Decide to have fun- Don’t be a party pooper, and don’t assume something is going to be lame just because it doesn’t sound amazing. Try it anyway.

Act the way I want to feel

The first week of this was inexplicably rough for some reason, but the past week was amazing. I had energy to do my job and I didn’t feel like I was going to faint by noon on Friday. I’ve been smiling more, laughing more, and worrying less. Attitude really is everything, more than anything I’ve done so far with my Happiness Project.

Ok, time for the goodies. Behold, the year’s first pumpkin delicacy:

To read my thoughts on real food, click here.

Autumn Pumpkin-Pecan Bread

1-3/4 C whole wheat or spelt flour

3/4 C sweetener of your choice. I used honey, but you could use maple syrup, rapadura, sugar, brown sugar, whatever floats your boat.

1-1/2 t cinnamon

1 t nutmeg

1/2 t baking soda

1/2 baking powder

1/2 t salt

sprinkle of cloves and ginger

2 eggs

1 C pumpkin

1/2 C oil (I used extra-virgin coconut oil, but you can use whatever you want.)

1/3 C milk or water

1/2 C chopped pecans, more or less to your liking

Preheat oven to 350. Mix the dry ingredients, add the wet ingredients and mix together, then add the pecans. Pour into a loaf pan and sprinkle more pecans on top for pretties. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.