We are often taught to see acceptance as a catch-22, perhaps because our exposure to this word typically occurs in relation to others. We are taught that belonging is more important than self-acceptance, an implicit and yet powerful message that impacts the value we place on our individuality. Regardless of our age or origin, we are all categorically placed into either ‘influencer’ or ‘influenced’, placing extraordinarily high pressure on us to fit in if we can’t stand out in the ‘right’ ways.
Acceptance is also peculiar in that it can be feigned, providing a false sense of confidence and support in a situation where there is very little. Becoming accustomed to this brand of acceptance is easy as it is truly all around us. Molds and guides await us on every platform, website, and media outlet offering a seemingly harmless escape from facing and crafting our own lives. Only, these molds and guides are inconsistent, contrived, and formulated to be just beyond our reach. Defeated by these expectations we may feel empty – questioning who we really are and whether or not we are good enough. Where do I start when I feel so disconnected? I’ve lost so much time, will I ever feel like me?
While uncomfortable, the times in our lives that we are thinking this way have enormous potential. Opening to this inner voice that is challenging us to find a different way to express ourselves and interact with this world expands our minds and helps us cultivate a renewed sense of possibility – a revolution of self. We have the power to challenge our understanding of acceptance and self-acceptance to be more complementary instead of adversarial. We already know that shallow acceptance can be achieved, but true acceptance and belonging requires more of us. We must be willing to explore our own potential and differentiate from the group in order to figure out where we belong.
Committing to this journey helps us honor the aspects of ourselves that make us wonderfully unique and celebrate the same in others. When we accept ourselves we are better able to help others do the same, initiating relationships grounded in true belonging. Living from a place of self-love equips us to value alone time without feeling lonely and time with others as profound and not simply distraction.
We welcome you to start this therapeutic journey with us on Nov. 9th, 10th, and 11th. On these days, we are holding the Lanterns and Labyrinths Fall 2018 Retreat for those who feel called to revolutionize the way they relate to themselves and those around them. As part of our weekend retreat, we will explore what it means to be vulnerable, to show up in our lives with courage, and what wholehearted living can look like. We will experience expressive arts together. We will share meals together. We will make meaningful connections with others and especially with our own selves and our own stories.
This three-day retreat explores The Daring Way™, a highly experiential methodology based on the research of Dr. Brené Brown. During the process, we will explore topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. We will go deep to examine the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that are holding us back and identify the new choices and practices that will move us toward more authentic and wholehearted living. The primary focus is on developing shame resilience skills and developing daily practices that transform the way we live, love, parent, and lead.