Radical Acceptance means leaning into these unprecedented times. It means taking in and validating the difficulties of all that has changed. It can mean choosing to pause for a moment to mourn what is lost and what is yet unknown. It is all okay and can be done without judgement of self, others or of the way the situation is being handled. Again, RA is not about advocating passivity, we can still generate solutions and push for change, but we are from a better vantage point. We become more closely aligned with having befriended the problem, meaning we are more effective. Our energies are more directed.
So if you find yourself longing for life “pre-covid” or contemplating questions such as “What is a summer without(fill in the blank)? I don’t have the answers to those questions. I can speculate that it may be difficult, it may be full of loss, nostalgia, memories, and all of that is okay. All of that can coexist in a space of uncertainty. What I do know is that putting up a fight and rooting oneself in comparisons or expectations of how they could be different will not likely be helpful. We can also entertain the possibility that a summer in the time of Covid may also be full of opportunities, differences and novelties. It can also be that we have power over how we exercise choice regarding our own participation in such.
Some statements of coping that may be useful to you during this time are: This situation (fill in the blank) is as it should be right now. With the information I have right now, I trust in my ability to make decisions. Can I pause for a moment and take in what is, letting go of comparisons, expectations and fears? Can I lean into this situation for a moment, without judgement, resistance and anger/ sadness/fear? Can I acknowledge what is known to me at this time? Can I embrace what is challenging and hard? I cannot change the context of what is happening, but I can choose how I participate in this experience.
Emily Spagnolo MSW, RSW