Written by

Calm Is: Acceptance of People Just As They Are

Acceptance of who and where someone is, and not how and where you wish they would be, is key for peace and harmony in your relationships.



Recently, I shared how acceptance of situations and emotions for what they are (even if negative) can lead to a deeper calm. Now, I want to extend this idea and share how acceptance can help in your relationships with people.
How much time do you spend frustrated and disappointed, wishing for a person to be different? The, “If they would just…” syndrome. Stressful, right?
People show us who they are, through their actions and behaviors. Sometimes, people have the best intentions but aren’t able to follow through. 

Accepting people for who they are

The best way to feel less disappointed, annoyed, and frustrated with others is:

  1. Accept people for who they are. Don’t expect more of them than they can give. See people’s actions as their truths over their words (if their words and actions don’t match).

  2. Avoid projecting how you would act. You are not them and have not had their life experiences. Even if you live under the same roof and share a life, everyone’s experiences are unique.

  3. Understand that others are making the best decisions they can at the time they’re making them. This takes the sting out of being hurt by someone not meeting your expectations.

Examples of acceptance

Example #1: When I go through hardships, I like to process them out loud and lean on my friends. But one of my best friends processes internally, in solitude. Initially, when she was going through a hardship, I’d be hurt when she didn’t want to discuss it with me, thinking she didn’t trust or want me. I wished she would lean on me and talk it through like I do with her. But, when I accepted that she processes differently, I let go of that stress and trusted that she would talk about it with me when she was ready. The way she needed to process had nothing to do with me. Phew – I could let that go. 
Example #2: My daughters usually take care of their homework and tasks on their own. But my eldest son doesn’t work like that, he needs more guidance and reminders. I used to get so frustrated he wouldn’t self-start with his homework. When I accepted that being a self-starter with his work was not how he was wired and stopped wishing for him to be different, I worried less and adjusted accordingly. 

Example #3: You and a friend are constantly trying to make plans, and they frequently cancel. At some point, you can expect that they aren’t going to follow through and aren’t in a place to make plans. Instead of working hard to get a plan on the calendar, and getting upset every time they cancel, you can accept that togetherness is not a priority for them right now and let go of the frustration that comes with constant cancellations. 

The gifts in acceptance

There are gifts to be found in every relationship. Even if you feel perpetually let down by someone, there are silver linings (perhaps it taught you how to be more self-reliant).
I’m not saying to tolerate toxicity or abuse, but the best gift we can give to ourselves and others is to accept people for exactly as they are. Just as we want to be loved, for exactly as we are, flaws and all.

Calm Is: Accepting someone as they are versus who you wish they were.



To read more on staying calm in a stressful world, pick up my book, Chaos to Calm: 5 Ways Busy Parents Can Break Free From Overwhelm, and sign up for my Own Your Calm newsletter

Reach out, I’m here for you.

Jenna Z Hermans - signature written