You can’t shift what you can’t accept.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to coach 4 people from 3 different continents. I was reminded just how much we’re all interconnected, how we’re all human, and how we all experience fear.

One of the questions I ask in every coaching session is:

“Are you willing to accept yourself for being in a threatened state, for just being scared right now?”

This is acceptance. Acceptance is allowing what is to be. Acceptance goes even further than allowing. Acceptance looks and feels like giving ourselves a big breath of self-compassion in the midst of feeling scared or overwhelmed or angry.

Acceptance is the opposite of “just suck it up,” which was my go-to move for decades. “Just suck it up” is avoidance and deflection that doesn’t allow space for something bigger and more powerful like acceptance.

Only when we can accept that we’re scared or in a threatened and reactive state, can we choose to shift to a state of trust. Acceptance is a pattern interrupter. Without acceptance, old patterns recycle over and over.

You can’t shift what you can’t accept. Next time you find yourself in a threatened, scared and reactive state, instead of berating yourself, can you pause and take in one deep breath of acceptance?

#consciousleadership #coaching

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Stephanie Blackburn Freeth is the creator of The Strategy Tango.


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