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Hey, everybody, welcome to today’s episode of the show. Today, we’re going to be diving into something that is extremely valuable for you. No matter where you are in life, no matter what your challenges you’re facing, what goals you’re moving towards, what your day to day circumstances are, this is of the most importance, the utmost importance, the utmost value. I think you’ll start to see why as we dive into it. It’s all about unconditional self-acceptance which is something that is essential for confidence and usually the lack of that, the lack of that self-acceptance is what’s creating a lot of our fear, our self-doubt and our social anxiety. So what is unconditional self-acceptance? Is it realistic? How do we bring more of it into our lives? What will it do for me and specifically how to do it? That’s what we’re getting into, in today’s show.
And what inspired me to create this is as you might know, right now we have open enrollment for the Unstoppable Confidence Mastermind which I mentioned in the last week’s show. We open enrollment only twice per year and it is a super powerful program. It’s the most powerful thing that I offer, I love doing it. It’s also my favorite thing, favorite program. Basically it’s a year-long program with just 10 people where we go on a journey from whatever is holding you back, fear, self-doubt, anxiety, in any area to breaking free to higher and higher levels of confidence, social confidence, you can talk to anyone, dating confidence so you can create the relationships with the people that you want that inspire you and not settle and business confidence. Confidence at work so you can, whether you’re in a company and you want to be more of a leader and be able to speak up more and be noticed for your ideas or you have your own business and you want to grow that bigger and bigger, I mean, that takes a ton of confidence too.
And we have all those people working on each of those core areas in The Mastermind and the core underlying piece is confidence though and it’s the same really, whether it’s in dating or business. I mean, some of the strategies are different but the core beliefs that we help people transform are all the same, they’re all on confidence. And the reason I wanted to do this episode is because unconditional self-acceptance is probably the biggest thing that I help people with in that group. I mean there’s a ton of stuff about specifics, around dating or how do I … the beauty of the group is it’s tailored to people’s situation so we dive deep on this person’s dating life or this person and how do I deal with my employees or how do I … I spoke up in a meeting at work which was good but then I have so much fear afterwards and beating myself up because I did it wrong. Those are the kind of scenarios and then we dive in and man, more often than not, it always comes back to this, this self-acceptance. And the people in the group have an intellectual idea like, “Oh yeah it’s probably better to love myself and accept myself than beat the crap out of myself.” Sure but how you to do that and the art and the skill and science of that is really what they master over the year.
So that’s what we’re getting into in this episode and it relates to that group. So if you want to learn more about it and find out what’s going on there, go to confidenceunleashednow, confidenceunleashednow.com/mastermind, confidenceunleashednow.com/mastermind. You can also go to this show’s page, shrinkfortheshyguy.com, shrinkfortheshyguy.com and then the show notes for this episode, there will be a link, that link to click on so you don’t have to remember it. But you go there, you can find out all the details, it’s limited to just 10 people and we already have people enrolled already for this one and the enrollment is just twice a year. So now we have the time to do it, if you’ve been like … one day, maybe now is the day, I don’t know, you’ll see, whatever works for you. But let’s talk about you and unconditional self-acceptance. Another way of saying unconditional self-acceptance is just unconditional love for yourself. Accepting because accepting yourself is part of loving yourself and that’s what we’re really talking about today. So, let’s start with you reflecting on you.
Unconditional self-acceptance is exactly what the word means unconditional, as in no matter what, I accept myself or no matter what I love myself. Now when you hear me say that or you imagine that, no matter what, I’m going to love myself or no matter what, I do love myself, I do accept myself, what happens? Does that feel true for you? Does it feel not true? Maybe not even whether it’s true or not in your experience, does that feel okay? Is that okay? Does a part of you have a reaction to that like, “Find a minute, that’s not okay, that’s bad.” What if I do something bad? I shouldn’t accept myself if I’ve done something bad or wrong, right? And we have this resistance to even the idea of it, even imagining doing it. We’re like, “Ah I don’t know about that.” I don’t know about … I don’t know if that’s all it cracks up to be. I’m not sure if I want to do that or not. And that’s significant because if we’re not even on board with the idea then it’s hard to learn how to make that a reality for you because here is the truth, we’re going to get in to creating unconditional self-acceptance a bit more and later in this episode but here’s the preview. It’s a skill, it’s not something that you just decide and then you’re done forever, you have to learn how to do it. You have to like rewire your brain because if you’re like me and most people, we have years of conditioning of just being terrible to ourselves, highly critical. Just harsh, exacting, perfectionistic, you’re a failure and a fuck up criticism in our heads that can come up from anything. From a social interaction, from a dating thing, they rejected me, they didn’t like me. Oh, I said the wrong thing, oh, they didn’t laugh, oh, that speech wasn’t very good.
Whatever the reason, my body doesn’t look good, I mean, I could go on for hours here, right? Whatever the reason, most of us are conditioned to be very critical of ourselves. Even if we hide it from others, that’s what’s going on in our heads and so we need to … it’s an active process. It’s an ongoing process to retrain our mind, the way we focus, the way we speak to ourselves in our head, the questions we ask ourselves. How we respond to our feelings and our emotions and the experiences and events in our life. The whole thing, it’s a rewiring; it’s a turning of a big ship. Like one of those big aircraft carriers that’s going in the ocean, when they turn that sucker, it’s not just like a five second, and the thing’s 90 degrees from where it was. No, it’s a slow turn and that’s how it is for ourselves to create unconditional self-acceptance and self-love. So, it’s a process and if you’re not really sold on it then it’s hard to … I mean, you’re not going to follow through with the steps with actually doing it.
So, the first thing is getting on board with it and seeing if it is something that you want to commit to. If it is a good idea, yes, I want to do it and that means removing some of the fears and the doubts and the concerns that you might have. So, what is it for you? If you completely accepted yourself, loved yourself no matter what, forget about how … and if that’s possible but just like let’s see you could press a button and boom, you can have it and that was your experience. Is there any hesitation, any reason you wouldn’t want to press that button? And dig a little deeper because sometimes you say, “No, no” but then there is, there are reasons. We’re not just aware of them so just slow down, breathe. So, is there any reason why I wouldn’t want to love myself no matter? What comes up for you if there’s any fear or angst or tension in your body about … just imagining doing it and that’s an indication there’s probably some resistance there. So, what is it? What is it for you? We’re going to take a quick break; I want you to keep reflecting on this and when we come back, I’m going to share what the most common forms of resistance are, how to shift those and let them go and then how to build unconditional self-acceptance so stay tuned. We’ll be right back right after this.
When I thought about contacting Dr. Aziz, I was nervous because I wasn’t 100% whether I really wanted to do this or no, but then I told myself that if I really want to make a change then I have to give it my best so that’s why I went ahead and got in touch with Dr. Aziz and I’m so glad I did. This weekend has been a very transformational experience for me. I came in having no clue what to expect and I’ve been able to kind of look into myself and see where I’m at, realize all the belief systems and stories that I tell myself and who I … and really see myself for who I truly am. I’ve been able to go out and do stuff like I never thought I would be able to do.
So when you were thinking about it, any reasons why you wouldn’t want to love and accept yourself no matter what? Here are some of the ones that I’ve noticed in myself and other people, I think are very common. One is this idea that if I love myself no matter what, if I did anything then I’m going to not be a very … I’m just going to do stuff that’s not very good. I’m going to do stuff that’s really selfish or maybe I’m going to do stuff that is hurting other people or is callous or uncaring; maybe this idea that we’re going to just accept anything so we could end up doing anything. Maybe that’s one that came up for you. Another one that comes up is, “Well, if I just love myself no matter what, maybe I become this like really lazy, unmotivated person. Maybe I wouldn’t do the thing, maybe that lack of love is what’s motivating me so if you loved yourself even if you were 10 pounds overweight, well, maybe then I would just stay 10 pounds overweight or maybe shit, I’d become 20 pounds overweight because I love myself no matter what, why not become 500 pounds overweight? And this idea that if I love myself then I’m not going to be motivated to get fit and get those washboard abs that I crave, right? So maybe there’s some fear there that you’re not going to achieve or succeed or get what you want. What else? Anything else that comes…? Those are two big ones that I found. There’s something else for you, think of it now. I’m going to address those two right now though.
So the first one, that somehow you’re going to be this bad, the kind of evil or out of control person who’s taking advantage of others or not giving or anything like that, total bullshit because here’s the thing. When you are … think about a time when you were in just a loving state, you just felt emotionally full, you were just … maybe you were in love, you were in love with someone else, maybe you loved what you did that day. Maybe you had so much fun whether it was a joy, free, fun activity like being at the river or playing a game that you love, a hobby that you enjoy or maybe of some work that you were doing but it didn’t feel like hard grinding labor. It felt like you were in flow and you were creating or figuring things out or solving problems and you were … things were cooking and you were feeling good and you were just full of love. Can you remember a time in your life where you’re full of love? Could be a week ago could be a day ago, could be five years ago, just think of it right now. Now when you’re in that state and you’re full of love, how good do you feel? So, you feel awesome, right? How loving do you feel towards other people? Also awesome, also big loving towards other people, how much do you want to give to others? Immensely? How relaxed do you feel? How open do you feel? Extremely open, right?
So, I had this experience when I was in that like head over heels love phase, I’ve experienced that a couple of times in my life and there’s just sort of like glow that you have and you’re like, “Ha, ha, hey, shopkeeper, how goes it today, ha, ha?” right? And there’s this like it’s just bubbling out of you. So, this idea that I need to withhold love for myself and criticize myself and basically not love myself to make me more loving, to make me more generous, to make me more giving, it doesn’t work. It really, really doesn’t. In the short-term, it might get you to do something via guilt or something like that but in the long-term, it’s not going to make you a magnanimous, a generous, a continually loving, giving, expanding person and you just can’t. You can’t sustain it and even if you can outwardly look that way, you’re going to be burned out and resentful inside. So, the truth is that love generates more love and you’ve probably seen this in relationships too. Have you ever been in a fight in a relationship? And here’s the essence of all fights, by the way in relationships. Both people don’t feel hurt or seen, their needs are not getting met and it’s the other person’s fault. And then you might even get off the topic really and it just turns into, “There’s something wrong with me? You think there’s something wrong with me? There’s nothing wrong with me; there’s something wrong with you.”
That’s the core of all fights and whether it’s done in a … my wife and I are very polite, calm people. We don’t yell at each other but it’s just … there’s something wrong with me? Well in my perception, I’m feeling like there’s something wrong with you. It’s a little more calm and tailored than all the way up to these people who have fights where they’re raging and screaming. There’s nothing wrong with me, there’s something wrong with you. Right, that’s not literally what they’re saying but that’s … the content could be summarized like that. So when you’re in a fight and it may be you’re separated for a while. You’re cooling off, they’re in their room and you’re outside or whatever, whether it’s that night or the next day and this could be with your partner or a family member or friend whatever, at some point, doesn’t someone have to like extend the olive branch of peace? I mean if no one does then you have those feuds that last for 20 years. I haven’t talked to my brother in 18 years, I don’t even remember why we’re not talking to each other but that bastard hasn’t called me so I’m not calling him. Right? And we hold on to that and that’s the essence of all that when that feud that can occur in. So, one person to heal the relationship to rebuild, one person is going to calm the other person and like kind of extend the olive branch.
Now they might not start with an apology especially if they have some pride but their tone is different. They’re like, “Hey, let’s talk about it or I see what you’re saying or maybe I’m sorry I said those things,” and that’s a loving act. And as soon as someone comes to you with that loving act, maybe even if you’re not quite ready to forgive them, there’s a little part of you that’s like, “Ah, ah, finally, okay,” right? It feels good even if earlier, you were like, “Yes, I will, but I can’t believe you said it, really hurt. Right? I don’t talk like that, that’s not what I would say, I’m too macho for that. But anyway when someone extends the love, we instantly melt or start to, right? So that’s love generates more love and it’s the same thing when you treat yourself with more love, you’ll experience more love, you’ll be able to give more love. That’s why that first story is total BS. The second one about motivating yourself, man, what you’re doing there and I’ve done this for so many years and I can still fall into this pattern if I’m not aware of it is it’s like a carrot … you have the carrot on the stick that they used to do this with donkeys or at least in cartoons they did. They would have a stick tied to their … along their back and the stick would go up in front of their head and then dangling down from the stick would be a carrot and so the donkey’s like … and walks towards the carrot.
I can’t imagine that really worked in real life, maybe it did, I don’t know. Maybe someone who has worked with donkeys, go to shrinkfortheshyguy.com and send me a message, let me know. But we do that with ourselves, where the carrot as love and it’s like, “I will give you love when you achieve blank. When you are a 127 pounds or 150 pounds or when you have gotten that project or when you’ve gotten a girlfriend or a husband or when everyone laughs at your jokes all the time or when you’ve achieved this amount of thing or you’ve gotten into this level in your business or you earn this amount of money in your career. Whatever it is, when you get there, then I’m going to love you.” That’s what we do to ourselves and this doesn’t work because when you’re trying to motivate yourself without love, you feel bad, you feel inadequate, you feel not enough. When you’re feeling not enough, are you performing at your highest? Are you taking big risks? Are you going after what you want, are you approaching the people that you want? Are you really going for it?
Going all out, just putting yourself out there? Or you’re hiding, you’re holding back, you’re hesitating, you’re procrastinating, you’re waiting. I mean, our action … I call this optimal self-coaching and I talk about this in The Confidence Code in depth, but optimal self-coaching is how we get ourselves to have optimal performance and it is all about self-compassion and being honest with ourselves. We’re not deluding ourselves and looking in the mirror and let’s say, you’re 20 pounds overweight and saying, “I am in incredible shape. I never work out and look at me, I’m in great shape.” Right? It’s like no, you might be like, “Whoa, I’m not really taking care of my health that well right now and I love you and it’s okay and let’s talk, let’s work together, you and you, how can we solve this? And that part of your mind is like, “You’re never going to solve it, you’re a fat pig. You shouldn’t eat so much.” That’s the demon that you have to learn how to tame and work with in order to have unconditional self-acceptance and that’s what I’m going to teach how to do right after this.
So, the fastest, most powerful way to generate unconditional self-acceptance once we’ve removed the reasons you don’t want to is to tame that inner critic because that inner critic is what creates the lack of self-acceptance. When that critic is silent, you are accepting of yourself. In fact if you’re engaged in an activity, think about an activity you get really absorbed in, whether it’s a game or work or a hobby or something, you’re fully absorbed in it, are you lacking self-acceptance then? Now maybe you’re fully absorbed but you’re also being, “Ah, I fucked that one up. God, I suck.” Maybe but let’s say you’re having a good time, you’re feeling relaxed, you’re in the flow. Then in that case, you’re not judging yourself. You’re not even aware of yourself. You’re not observing yourself and evaluating, you’re just in it and your critic is quiet.
And when we are experiencing a lack of self-acceptance, that’s because our critic is very active and we don’t know how to effectively deal with him or her, however the critic shows up in your mind. So it says, you suck, you’re overweight, you’re fat or you didn’t do that right or everyone thinks you’re pathetic and we have all these strategies to deal with it that don’t work. We try to be kind of cower, “Oh shit, it’s right” or we fight it, “Shut up, shut up and leave me alone, you meanie.” Or we try anxiously to solve the problem, “Oh man, everyone there was upset with me, okay, what am I going to do? What am I going to … should I say something? Should I talk about it tomorrow? And we ruminate about how we’re going to fix it. And all that is coming from the critic and instead, we need to learn how to respond to that critic. How to deal with that critic? That’s how you start to generate deep unconditional self-acceptance. And the most powerful way to deal with a critic is to communicate with it. Some people say just ignore it. I don’t know about you but I find that very difficult. It’s like you’re … that’s what people … that’s what parents … that’s what my mom used to tell me, “Just ignore your brother.” It’s like dude, he’s like hitting me with something, I can’t just ignore him? I can’t just ignore him, right? I need to do something.
And it’s the same thing with this and just like someone who’s kind of hitting you with something, sometimes there can be some force in it, like “Hey, whoa, whoa, whoa, slow down, slow down, that’s not okay to talk to me that way.” But then you’re dialoguing with him, you’re communicating what’s going on? What’s underneath? What is the … because here’s the thing and I talked about this in another episode but the critic is always afraid. He’s always afraid of losing something, of being hurt and he’s trying to beat you into being different so that it doesn’t happen. And your job is to find out what he’s afraid of, to talk with him, to give the critic love too and that’s what that real power of unconditional self-acceptance opens up, as you’re loving yourself as you are and you’re loving the critic. And there’s so much more that we can get into in this episode. You can start with The Confidence Code, yourconfidencecode.com. I’m going to talk about this in my books, both books, The Solution to Social Anxiety and The Art of Extraordinary Confidence and I honestly think the most powerful way to really master this would be to do some deep work on it and in the mastermind is one way to do that. There’s other ways, you can find a counselor or something but I know that the stuff that I do, I’ve seen it’d be very powerful and effective for people. So if you’re interested in that, go to of theconfidenceunleashednow.com/mastermind. But whatever it is, you got to get clear that that’s what you want … and in fact, actually let’s turn this into your action step.
Your action step for today is to get clear and decide that you want to unconditionally accept yourself. See if there’s any other obstacles that I didn’t address, anything getting in the way about why you wouldn’t want to, but get clear like, “This is what I want to do” because as soon as you set that as your compass, then it reminds you of a stronger commitment to it. You’re much more likely to do it. So that when you notice yourself beating yourself up, you’d be like, “Oh wait, I don’t want to do that,” now whether you can instantly stop the critic or not, that depends upon where you’re at, your skill, how you’re feeling in that moment, your awareness level, all those things. But just that guiding principle of I don’t want to beat myself up anymore. I want to be in my own side, that is a super important first step and that’s why that is your action step for today. So, go ahead and rock that, rock more and more love and unconditional acceptance for yourself and until we speak again, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome; I’ll talk to you soon.
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