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Client story: "I've been looking for love all my life," said Helen, a 50-year-old teacher. "Have you enjoyed the search?" I asked. "I haven't found love yet," she replied. "Do you understand why not?" I asked. "Must be something wrong with me, I guess," she said. "No," I said. "There's nothing wrong with you. It's just that you haven't found yourself yet."
Lesson: When you abandon your Unconditioned Self, you go in search of satisfaction in the world around you. The search can be exciting at times, but it does not lead to lasting fulfillment because the searching means you often leave yourself behind. Ironically, it's only when you stop searching that you find yourself and happiness again. True self-acceptance is the realization that you are what you seek. What you are looking for in the world—love, acceptance, joy, peace—are all qualities of your true nature.
The more you accept yourself, the more abundant you will feel. Like attracts like. When you identify with the inherent happiness of your Unconditioned Self, you attract experiences and people that are entirely compatible with how you feel about yourself. As you increase your self-acceptance, you let yourself accept more happiness, love, peace and abundance.
Exercise: The Latin for the word "accept" is "acceptare," which means "to receive, willingly." The more you accept yourself, the better you become at receiving. Live with this thought today: "Happiness is here, because I am here." Another great affirmation is: "Happiness is where I am."
Next: Know your strengths