The Power of acceptance

We always hear about the power of forgiveness, but I’ve heard little about the power of acceptance.  Acceptance has the power to change your life for the better and can positively affect those around you. lists two definitions of the word accept, and the one that has the power to shift your thoughts and beliefs and change your life is to agree or consent to.


The Mother Wound is real and affects us in profound ways.  

I didn’t have the perfect relationship with my mom.  It was difficult on many levels, but she was the only mom I ever had and it took me a long time to stop expecting her to be the mom I wanted and accept her for the mom that she was. 

I remember packing to drive over for a visit, several years before she passed away, and I was frustrated and angry.  I wanted to visit, but there was negative energy affecting everything: I was snippy with my kids and dreading the drive.  

The Last Thanksgiving before she died.
I had a decision to make…

I realized that my anger and frustration came from a place of disappointment, regret, fear, and abandonment.  There were some major unresolved issues between me and my mom, and I had a choice right then and there.  I could continue to operate from the place of self-righteous judgment or accept.  I had the opportunity to let go of the idea of who I thought my mom should be and accept her as she was.  I could, in essence, agree with who she was.  This was a pivotal moment in my relationship with her. 

At that moment, I decided to accept her as she was.  I realized she did her best as my mom with the tools she had at the time.  I decided to let go of who I thought she should be and allow my past expectations of her to dissolve in favor of experiencing a present relationship with her. 

That moment- that decision- changed the course of our relationship and allowed a friendship to evolve. 

The drive over to Florida was filled with expectation instead of dread, and subsequent visits were filled with laughter and connection like I had not experienced with my mom before.  The power of acceptance made it possible for me to experience the woman who was my mother and gave me peace beyond understanding when she passed a few years later.

Five ways that the Power of Acceptance can improve your life:
  1. It can remove the barriers to your relationships.  Accepting the other person as they are and setting aside your expectations of who you think they should be allows for an unhindered relationship to emerge.  Expectation is the venom that infects and destroys relationships.
  2. It reduces your emotional stress.  When you let go of the need to be in control of how other people behave and allow them to be who they are, even if the person they are isn’t agreeable, you can walk away (emotionally or physically) in peace, thus removing major stressors from your life.
  3. It increases your energy.  Just imagine not spending all your energy trying to change the other person into who you think they should be so your relationship can flourish.  
  4. It increases your peace. Once the stress of making others fit into your idea of who they should be is gone, you can settle into the peace you’ve always wanted.  
  5. It starts a domino effect.  After you’ve accepted one person regardless of their flaws, you become uniquely situated to begin accepting others as they are.  

Once the power of acceptance infects you, the domino effect spills over into other areas of your life, and acceptance becomes part of who you are instead of something you are trying to do.  

The decision I made, all those years ago, to accept my mom as she was instead of who I wanted her to be, created peace, love, and acceptance in my heart.  Take a moment today and consider who in your life needs your acceptance, and then choose to accept them and see the difference the power of acceptance will make in your life.