Radical acceptance is originally a Buddhist concept of accepting reality for what it is, rather than what it should be. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a Buddhist to reap the benefits of radical acceptance. We all struggle with anger and forgiveness at times, we are only human after all. With radical acceptance, you have the power to forgive, let go of your anger, and do what is best for yourself at the same time.
Forgive, Don’t Forget
People often confuse forgiveness with forgetting. When someone has wronged you, they may not deserve a second chance. It is OK to forgive their actions, but do not forget them. Radical acceptance is all about learning from your experiences, so cutting someone toxic out of your life may be the right thing to do. If you have been wronged, don’t move on like nothing happened. Hold others accountable, but don’t hold grudges.
Reality is the sum of our experiences and our environment. As far as radical acceptance is concerned, what currently is a product of the events of your life, and you must accept some responsibility for that reality. Acknowledging your part in your current situation may help you let go of your anger and forgive the other person. It is important to ask yourself what role you might have played in the situation so it isn’t blown out of proportion.
Radical acceptance requires that you let go of your anger to truly accept reality. When someone hurts us, we feel justifiably angry. However, it is important to remember that our anger does not protect us from further injury. Staying angry at someone only wastes your energy, it doesn’t prevent bad things from happening again. Instead of being a victim, accept that you were wronged, learn from it, and move on.
Radical Acceptance Is Not Agreement
Unfortunately, life isn’t always fair, and radical acceptance takes that into account. You will not always get your way, but by accepting a situation for what it is, you might be happier in the long run. When you accept something, that doesn’t mean you like it or agree with it. Just because you decide to live in reality, that doesn’t mean you should enjoy it all the time.