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Self Acceptance To Solve Social Anxiety

Without complete self acceptance you will never get over your social anxiety.

There, I said it.

This is HUGE!

OK. So, what exactly is complete self acceptance?

It is being completely OK with who you are at this moment in time. It is fully accepting and coming to grips with your shortcomings and imperfections.

Only a few years back I finished up the remainders of my social anxiety. I had made huge leaps, but couldn’t get rid of my anxieties and uncomfortable feelings when meeting new people.

I had approached it from all the possible angles that I could think of. I worked on the fear, the need for approval, the embarrassment, the performance anxiety, what others would think of me, not wanting to be in the spotlight etc.

In normal life I was almost completely free of my social anxiety, but when I was out talking to “strangers” I had this uncomfortable feeling that I couldn’t shake off.

After having had a few sessions with a befriended therapist he finally suggested that it might have to do with self acceptance. When he said it, I proudly responded that I was perfectly fine with myself.

Well, was I ever wrong!

I was only mildly OK with myself. At best. But I thought I was perfectly OK with who I was. It was just the anxiety that I didn’t accept.

Since the therapist was very experienced and had a specialization in anxiety and self esteem, I decided to put my ego aside and really think about it.

I was sitting in the train, thinking it over when I finally got the huge “aha!-moment”.

Of course, self acceptance! Complete self acceptance and acceptance of everything around me will set me free! I thought back of previous books and courses I had listened to or attended and it all started to make sense.

You know, sometimes you need someone else to help you realize what you don’t see yourself.

I’ve learned that with some stubborn issues your conscious mind is blocking you from seeing what is really going on.

In the article below, I give you my findings and experiences in using self acceptance to overcome your social anxiety. After this I share useful tips in achieving self acceptance.

Complete Self Acceptance And Acceptance Of Everything

I’m going to be a bit challenging here.

Q: “Do you really want to get over your social anxiety?”

A: “Of course! Why else do you think I’m reading this?!”

Then you have to begin by starting to accept that you have social anxiety. Being OK with it. As long as you keep fighting it, you cannot solve it.

Interesting, right?

And you know what? I couldn’t accept this at all!

Accepting my social anxiety and my weaknesses? Are you kidding me?

I fought really hard against it. I believed I was still cool.

My whole self image that I had was still that of the popular kid back in my early teens. I just couldn’t accept that I was like this. I pretended that I didn’t have any issues. I was a master at camouflaging this.

So I thought…

I was too proud to tell that I had social anxiety. It was my secret.

And that was exactly what was holding me back.

“What you resists persist, what you accept you gain power over”

Once I started to really accept that I had issues, faults, imperfections, shortcomings, anxieties and fears, I became more relaxed about them.

What happens when you accept your issues is you will be able to see the problem as separate from yourself. Which is huge.

It’s not you anymore; it’s the problem that you have that you are working on.

That is step one.

From then on you take the second step. Accepting yourself completely. Everything. So that means all your imperfections and shortcomings, your body, your personality, your past, your present situation etc.

Once I finally took the leap and decided to accept myself for who I was at that moment I started to make huge progress. The most I had made in my whole quest to overcoming my social anxiety.

I improved in two months as much as I had in the past 5 years…

It was that big of a difference.

You see, when you have complete self acceptance, when you accept your situation and the world around you, you become relaxed. You just don’t care so much anymore.

Self Acceptance And Change

I was so resistant to accept myself because I thought that if I accepted myself I was giving in. That I was giving up. I believed I would become complacent to change myself for the better.

I also didn’t feel like it was the real me, having this condition.

I thought: I’m not going to be happy until I have changed and am the person that I want to be. I will only be accepted and I am only going to accept myself completely when I am free of social anxiety.

Does this sound familiar to you?

We tend to believe that thinking in this way is going to motivate us to change. Unfortunately, this thinking is false. It’s not the case that if we just feel bad enough about ourselves we will be motivated to change. It might do so, but only for a short while.

And if it is indeed motivating you to change, then wouldn’t you have changed already?

When you have complete self acceptance however, you are basically starting over again. A new attempt to conquer this problem you have.

Only this time you are not wasting your energy fighting against it. You have new possibilities that were not there before. If you have self acceptance, change is much, much easier.

Not accepting yourself is fighting an uphill battle.

So here comes some tough love advice:

Face it; this IS who you are right NOW. This doesn’t mean that you will be like this forever, but at this moment in time this is who you are. A person that suffers from social anxiety.

Tips For Complete Self Acceptance

  • Don’t judge yourself Don’t say I should be confident. Or I should be “normal”. Realize that you are doing the best you can given the resources that you have at this moment in time.Replace it by “I want to be confident” and “I want to be socially savvy”.This releases the pressure of not measuring up to your own expectations.
  • Who are you? What are your values, what is important to you in your life? What are your rules, your principles? What do you accept and what not? Write it down.
  • Develop compassion for yourself Focus more on your positives than on your negatives. Forgive yourself for you negatives. Release your need for perfection: How Perfectionism Influences Social Anxiety
  • Refuse to measure yourself Don’t compare yourself to others. And don’t measure yourself to society’s standards. Only compare yourself to you. Accept where you are right now and go from here.
  • Get rid of your irrational beliefs
    Ask yourself:

    • Why do I not accept myself?
    • What do I not accept about myself?
    • What part of me do I not accept?
    • I do not accept myself because…

    And then use: Steps To Overcoming Limiting Beliefs

What you can’t change – you have to accept first. If you accept it, you release the worry and anxiety about it. This frees up energy and this self acceptance will give you a powerful feeling. This powerful feeling you can now use and tackle your challenges.

“Where you are and what you are right now has to be made right, even if you don’t like it that much. Nevertheless, it is you. By criticizing and negating the current circumstances, what you are saying is that you are not okay. What is around you is only an extension of who you are. Look at those things and realize that they are what they are, imperfect though they may be. By accepting the truth, you propel yourself into better circumstances. By resisting, you live in the constant negativity of your own dissatisfaction.”

Stuart Wilde

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Download the PDF file Self Acceptance by right-clicking on the link. Then choose ‘save as’ and save it to your desktop.

Download the PDF file Your Beliefs About Other Peoples Thoughts by right-clicking on the link. Then choose ‘save as’ and save it to your desktop.

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