November 5    

Today's quotation:

I was once afraid of people saying, Who does she think she is?  Now I have the courage to stand and say, This is who I am.

Oprah Winfrey

Today's Meditation:

"This is who I am."  For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, I accept who I am, and I'd much appreciate it if you would accept who I am, too.  After all, I'm just like you-- trying to make the best of my life in a world that sometimes makes it difficult for me to do so.  And if you're unable to accept me for who I am, well then-- it sounds to me like the problem is yours, and I'm not going to spend any time or energy worrying about why you won't accept me for exactly who and what I am.

If I worry about what other people think about me and about how I do things and what kinds of actions I take, then am I not letting that worry determine to some extent how I act in the future?  When Oprah was afraid that people would say "Who does she think she is?," don't you think that many of her decisions involved trying to avoid that kind of response?  And if she made her decision based on that criterion-- other people's responses-- could her actions have been genuine and fully unique?

When we reach a point at which we're able to do what we feel is right, without apology and without explanation, then we're living our authentic lives.  If we don't need to reply, and don't even care, when someone else says "Who does that person think he or she is?," then we're living our authentic lives, being led by the spirit within and not by the voices without.

The voices without are very powerful, and almost all of us want to be in other people's good graces.  But it's much more important to be true to ourselves and who we are, for then we'll attract people to our lives who don't judge us, but who appreciate the fact that we're willing to live authentically and to love ourselves as we are. 

Questions to consider:

Do you sometimes worry about how other people see you?  Why?

Why does it take courage to accept ourselves as we are without apology or explanation?

What steps could you take to accept yourself more fully?

For further thought:

Those people who truly love and accept themselves are rare.  Why do we seek self-worth through social recognition and acquisition, as though those were needed?  We are special children of God, the Creator of worlds without measure.  As such each one of us is intrinsically very, very worthy.

Bruce Gilbert

more thoughts and ideas on acceptance



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