What Does it Mean to Accept Yourself As You Are?

What Does it Mean to Accept Yourself As You Are?

It can feel really hard to accept ourselves as we are when we think or feel we have done so many things wrong when we were addicted to drugs or alcohol. Recovery is not about bashing ourselves over perceived wrongs. It is more about accepting our lives as they are now, in the present. Even if we make amends for the past, and seek forgiveness, we don’t have to hold it against ourselves and not be able to move forward. That is contrary to what we want and need in recovery.

Self Acceptance

Saying ‘I am good’ if people ask how you are is not just a blanket statement. It is like telling someone you are doing fine even when you feel like a duck paddling in a pond. If you don’t want to tell that person how you feel, it is okay to speak your mind and say you prefer not to discuss it right then. This is more honest with yourself and the other person than just saying all is well. It is very hard to do, but necessary. Meeting yourself where you are at, not where you think you ought to be, is about accepting things as they are now and understanding they can change if you work at it but you don’t have to push yourself before you are ready.

Sit With the Feelings

When you accept yourself where you are, as you are, you sit with what is uncomfortable and disconcerting. You look back at your life and accept, without judgment, that you did the things you did in the past as the person you were then. Who you are now is someone making reparations, fixing, and offering a new way forward. You may not be perfect but you are in recovery, and you are doing it one step at a time. Feel the feelings you have over the former life you had (grief, anger, anxiety, sadness, etc) and let yourself be present to that. When you are done feeling it, move on and begin to piece your life together moment by moment.

Get Unfrozen

If you get stuck where you are, you’ll never get where you’re going. Basically, your life goals can be accomplished, but only if you are willing to let yourself get unstuck. Maybe it’s stuck on a feeling, in a moment in time, or with another person. The key is to not spend your whole time there, ruminating about the past or what could have been. Instead, you can accept that you are where you are for a reason. You have a new purpose and new focus in life, aside from addiction. Your job now is to move forward and heal. Heal from the pain and trauma of the past, work towards reconciliation with others, and seek renewal of your mind, body, and spirit on the journey. Don’t worry about what other people are doing (or not doing). This is your journey and it is only yours to take. When you accept yourself where you are, you can stride confidently into the future and have the life that is meant for you in recovery.


Oceanfront is located in Laguna Beach, a beautiful oceanside community. We support your journey of recovery with trained addiction services providers, treatment professionals, and resources you need to heal. Call us to find out how we can help you navigate addiction recovery: 877-279-1777