What is Radical Acceptance?

kim gonzales coaching lady crying

If you ever had a love one pass away, you know how truly difficult it is to accept.

When my mom passed away, I had a hard time believing that she was really gone.

I wanted to rewrite the past and make her passing untrue, but it was true.

I kept going back to thinking that if I asked more questions, spoke to more doctors, or made her go to her appointments, the situation would’ve been different.

We cannot argue with the past, and what’s done is done no matter how unfair or sad it is.

We recently had another dose of radical acceptance with the passing of our almost 17 year old cat and then a month later we lost our 12 year old dog.

Is there something more we could’ve done to make our cat cancer free, could we have done something else for our dog’s bloat and her other issues?

Should we have visited more vets?

The fact is, we did everything possible to keep them alive, but for their sake, we had to let them go.

Each time, we were crushed!

Of course, following death, it’s normal to go through anxiety as well as the five stages of the grieving process (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance) and not all people grieve the same way.

The last stage is acceptance, which is a willingness to tolerate a difficult situation, and during my grieving experiences I learned about “radical acceptance”.

What exactly is Radical Acceptance?

Radical Acceptance is “acknowledging reality”.

When a situation, event, or emotion is out of our control, fighting against it (i.e. non-acceptance) often leads to suffering” according to the Huff Post.

DBT Self Help explains that “there are three parts to radical acceptance. The first part is accepting that reality is what it is. The second part is accepting that the event or situation causing you pain has a cause. The third part is accepting life can be worth living even with painful events in it“.

“Accepting reality is difficult when life is painful. No one wants to experience pain, disappointment, sadness, or loss. But those experiences are a part of life. When you attempt to avoid or resist those emotions, you add suffering to your pain. You may build the emotion bigger with your thoughts or create more misery by attempting to avoid the painful emotions. You can stop suffering by practicing acceptance” explains Psychology Today.

Radical acceptance focuses on the pain, instead of the suffering.

Did you ever have a time when it was hard to accept reality?

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TOPIC: What is Radical Acceptance?

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