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Quotations: Acceptance & Coping

10 Things I Cannot Change


Acceptance Is the Main Method of Coping

“You have to accept whatever comes, and the only important thing is that you meet it with courage and with the best that you have to give.” —Eleanor Roosevelt


Quotattions from Various Sources

Organized Alphabetically

“A man ought to be seen by the gods neither dissatisfied with anything nor complaining.” —Marcus Aurelius

“Accept a defeat as it is: a defeat. Don’t try to transform it in ‘experience.’ It may be an experience IF you swallow your ego and say to yourself: ‘I lost.’ If you want to be successful, you must respect one rule—never lie to yourself.” —Paulo Cohen

“Accept everything just the way it is.” —Miyamoto Musashi

“Acceptance and tolerance and forgiveness, those are life-altering lessons.” —Jessica Lange

“Acceptance defeats no-ting and no-ting is the chief method of self-talk to feed ego’s hunger for knowing.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Acceptance is not condoning but acknowledging.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Acceptance is not love. You love a person because he or she has lovable traits, but you accept everybody just because they’re alive and human.” —Albert Ellis

“Acceptance is the very essence of the Tao.” —Huahujing

“All healing is first a healing of the heart.” —Carl Townsend

“And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.” —Luke 12:22

“And then, examine it by those rules which you have, and find, and chiefly by this: whether it concerns the things which are in our control, or those which are not; and if it concerns anything not in our control, be prepared to say that is nothing to you.” —Epictetus

“At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can.”–Frida Kahlo

“At the head of all understanding is realizing what is and what cannot be, and the consoling of what is not in our power to change.” —Solomon ibn Gabirol (Solomon ben Judah)

“Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.” —Thomas à Kempis

“But mankind forgets not that which is to be forgotten, forgetting that which is not to be forgotten. This is forgetfulness indeed.” —Chung Tzu

“By letting go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try, the world is beyond the winning.” —Lao Tzu

“By your own soul, learn to live. If some men thwart you, take no heed. If some men hate you, have no care. Sing your song. Dream your dream. Hope your hope and pray your prayer.” —Pakenham Beatty

“Change is never painful, only the resistance to change is painful.” —Demi Lovato

“Content makes poor men rich, discontent makes rich men poor.” —Benjamin Franklin

“Coping is complete acceptance.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Correct it or accept it.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Do everything with a mind that lets go. Do not expect praise or reward.” —Ajahn Chah

“Do not seek to bring things to pass in accordance with your wishes, but wish for them as they are, and you will find them.” —Epictetus

“Fix it or accept it.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Fix your eyes forward on what you can do, not back on what you cannot change.” —Tom Clancy

“Flow with whatever may happen and let your mind be free. Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is ultimate.” —Chuang-Tzu (Zhuangzi)

“For if thou canst, correct that which is the cause; but if thou canst not do this, correct at least the thing itself; but if thou canst not do even this, of what use is it to thee to find fault.” —Marcus Aurelius

“Forget injuries, never forget kindness.” —Confucius

“Happiness and freedom begin with a clear understanding of one principle: Some things are within our control, and some things are not. It is only after you have faced up to this fundamental rule and learned to distinguish between what you can and can’t control that inner tranquility and outer effectiveness become possible.” —Epictetus, The Art of Living

“Happiness can exist only in acceptance.” —George Orwell

“Have patience. All things are difficult before they become easy.” —Saadi

“Have patience with all things but first with yourself. Never confuse your mistakes with your value as a human being. You are perfectly valuable, creative, worthwhile person simply because you exist. And no amount of triumphs or tribulations can ever change that.” —Saint Frances de Sales

“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” —Epictetus

“He who has learned how to laugh at himself shall never cease to be entertained.” —John Powell

“I meet young people, and they want to act and they want to be famous, and I tell them, when you get to the top of the tree, there’s nothing up there. Most of this is nonsense, most of this is a lie. Accept life as it is. Just be grateful to be alive.” —Anthony Hopkins

“I pay no attention whatever to anybody’s praise or blame. I simply follow my own feelings.” ―Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

“I suppose the process of acceptance will pass through the usual four stages: (I) this is worthless nonsense; (II) this is an interesting, but perverse point of view; (III) this is true, but quite unimportant; (IV) I always said so.” —J.B.S. Haldane

“In the end these things matter most: How well did you love? How fully did you live? How deeply did you let go?” ―Jack Kornfield

“I’ve developed a new philosophy–I only dread one day at a time.” —Charlie Brown, comic strip character

“If you desire any of the things which are not in your own control, you must necessarily be disappointed.” —Epictetus

“If you don’t like something, change it.  If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.” —Mary Engelbreit

“If you want to improve, be content to be thought foolish and stupid.” —Epictetus

“In all things have no preferences.” —Miyamoto Musashi

“In moments of great grief, you realize you are not immortal, you are not a god, you are part of the natural world and you come to accept that.” —David Attenborough

“It’s better to look ahead and prepare than to look back and regret.” —Jackie Joyner-Kersee

“Just because it should be does not mean that it must be.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Learn to be indifferent to what makes no difference.” —Marcus Aurelius

“Let me do my best to change the unfortunate condition or accept it and live with it if I truly find that I can’t change it. Whining about how awful it is will only make it seem worse than bad and make me feel more miserable!” —Albert Ellis

“Let not your mind run on what you lack as much as on what you have already.” —Marcus Aurelius

“Letting go gives us freedom and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything—anger, anxiety, or possessions—we cannot be free.” —Thich Nhat Hanh

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them—that only causes sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” —Lao Tzu

“Life is under no obligation to give us what we expect.” —Margaret Mitchell

“Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens.” —Epictetus

“May your life be like a wildflower growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day.” —Native American proverb

“Needing leads to bleeding–to almost all inevitable suffering.” —Albert Ellis, Buddhism and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy

“Never say of anything that I have lost it, only say that I have given it back.” —Epictetus

“Nor is it wiser to weep a true occasion lost, but trim our sails, and let old bygones be.” —Alfred Lord Tennyson

“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” —James Baldwin

“Of course there is no formula for success except, perhaps, an unconditional acceptance of life and what it brings.” —Arthur Rubinstein

“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” —Aristotle

“Problem-solving requires that you first accept the problem.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” —Matthew 6:34

“The attitude of unconditional self-acceptance is probably the most important variable in their long-term recovery.” —Albert Ellis, Rational-Emotive Therapy with Alcoholics and Substance Abusers, p. 71

“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.” —Carl Rogers

“The mind is never right but when it is at peace with itself.” —Seneca

“The tempering process of metal decreases the hardness of metal and increases the flexibility of metal; thereby, making metal stronger.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“The wise man thinks about his troubles only when there is some purpose in doing so; at other times he thinks about others things.” —Bertrand Russell (1872– 1970), British author, mathematician, and philosopher

“There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.” —Epictetus

“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?” —Matthew 6:25

“Things that are done, it is needless to speak about –things that are past, it is needless to blame.” —Confucius

“This is the way it is.” —Ajahn Chah

“Those who are free of resentful thoughts surely find peace.” —Buddha

“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.” —Thich Nhat Hanh

“To understand the actual world as it is, not as we should wish it to be, is the beginning of wisdom.” —Bertrand Russell

“Tolerating frustrating events well increases your power to change what you can change.” —Albert Ellis

“Well, then, is it not better to use what is in their power like a free man than to desire in a slavish and abject way what is not in they power?” —Marcus Aurelius

“Whatever I do not accept rules me.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“We should always be asking ourselves: Is this something that is, or is not, in my control?” —Epictetus

“When confronted with a situation which we cannot change, we are then challenged to change ourselves.” —Viktor Frankl

“When the rain falls it cannot be put back into the clouds.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“When you catch yourself slipping into a pool of negativity, notice how it derives from nothing other than resistance to the current situation.” ―Donna Quesada

“Who is rich? The one who is happy with his portion.” —Pirkei Avot 4: 1

“You can’t begin until you begin to accept.” —Kevin Everett FitzMaurice

“You have to accept whatever comes, and the only important thing is that you meet it with courage and with the best that you have to give.” —Eleanor Roosevelt

“You never truly need what you want. That is the main and thoroughgoing key to serenity.” —Albert Ellis, Buddhism and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy

“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.” —William S. Burroughs


Quotations on Acceptance from AA & Al-Anon

Organized Alphabetically

“Detach with love.”–Al-Anon

“Easy Does It.”–AA

“God grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know it’s me.”–Anonymous

“I cannot afford resentments.”–AA

“I didn’t cause it. I can’t change it. I can’t control it.”–Al-Anon

“Just for today.”–AA

“Let Go and Let God.”–AA

“Live and Let Live.”–AA

“Live life on life’s terms.”–AA

“Take Life One Day at a Time.”–AA

“Turn it over.”–AA

“When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation–some fact of my life–unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.”–Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, p. 449 (The Big Book)


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