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  1. I want to blog a bit this evening about Self Acceptance.

    This year, as it has been for many people I fear, has been - challenging - to say the least.

    Lot's of ups - lot's of downs - but not much balance. It's like I've been searching for something without actually knowing what it is I'm searching for. I've had failures, I've had successes, I've had some near misses. Nothing has actually really hit the spot.

    This year has brought about alot of change and I've spent a fair bit of time trying to find acceptance from others. Acceptance for me being who I am, acceptance for the choices I make and acceptance for my spirit to be allowed to follow its path. I turned 32 a few weeks ago and had the most amazing day - spent with my dog, and then by myself. I took myself off to a local woodland (it wasn't too cold actually!) and I explored a new area of the woodland in which I very rarely walk. I ended up finding a stunning clearing - the forest floor covered with autumnal coloured leaves. I sat here for hours. I have some gentle music playing from my phone and I just sat.

    This was a bit of a turning point for me.

    I sat mulling over the past few months - thinking about the ups and the downs. About what it is I was looking for. Then, towards the end of the afternoon as the sun was gently setting - two stags and a doe entered the clearing on the far side - noticing me straight away. I thought it was odd that there were two stags together. And then suddenly I thought - yes, they are both stags, but they are their own animal. This creature didn't care if it was being judged, it didn't care what others thought of it, it just did what came naturally. Being a stag!

    Boom. The steam train had it. I only knew how to be myself - the best possible person I can be (don't get me wrong - I'm far from an angel). I was actually searching for myself. In amidst all of the drama and change of the year. I lost myself!

    This week - I think I fully integrated. With the help of two very special people. They've done more for me in the space of a week that I can ever tell them - and more than I could probably every show them.

    Everybody needs at least one person who accepts them for who they are. Not trying to change you. Not only accepting the parts they like. But all of you. I'm extremely lucky - and extremely thankful - that I have these two (plus an existing one) in my life who accept me for who I am. Faults and all.

    Those people - the ones that put up with your nonsense - will tell you when you are acting out of turn, inappropriately or unjust.

    So - my advice to anyone out there struggling. Anyone out there who doesn't feel they can be their true self around at least one person - don't go looking for them. Instead, try accepting yourself first. Accept yourself - celebrate your successes and learn from your faults. You will soon draw new to you the people that will accept you for accepting yourself.

    Speaking from experience - trust me, it works!