Change And Acceptance

Yesterday, someone exclaimed that I’m “always trying to change people.”

This hurt since that’s the exact behavior I’ve been trying to change. Giving advice is something I like to do, but I do it more than I’d like and have consciously tried to say less. The comment cut deep because I wished I acted differently.

My reaction got me thinking about the delicate balance between change and acceptance. Yes, some behaviors don’t serve us and changing them would be good. But also, self-fulfillment requires self-acceptance. We need the wisdom to know that we already have everything we need, and that we are okay just as we are.

The balance is hard to strike. Change too much, and the change will never be enough. After all, change is never absolute since tomorrow is unknown. And acceptance is powerful, so long as we don’t conflate acceptance with cynicism, detachment, or resignation.

So I think the dance between change and acceptance needs lightness, an understanding that you’ll miss a few moves, but you’ll never stop dancing.

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