How Acceptance SOLVES Problems!

🌟 Focusing on problems is a habit. And so is focusing on solutions.

The problem is when we don’t see any other option than to complain. It’s hard-wired in our evolution to focus on what’s wrong; it’s our survival brain doing its job to protect us. But there is in fact another option…☝️

Accept reality just as it is. 🙌

🗣️ “That’s ridiculous Donald! There’s so much injustice in the world! How can you ‘accept’ when there’s so much injustice and atrocities?!” 🗣️

Let me clarify: Accepting life as it is does not mean you are ignoring the injustice, corruption, or things that are wrong in the world. Acceptance is so you don’t allow your ego to control your emotions. 🗯️

When you constantly focus on what others “should” or “shouldn’t” be doing, fighting about what “should” or “shouldn’t” be happening in the world, you will also find more of it.

🌟 Whatever you focus on consistently, your mind places a focus to keep finding more of it in your life. 🌟

So if you’re always looking for what’s wrong in your life, your mind, like Google, will be sure to find a huge amount of search results with the keyword: “What’s wrong in my life?” 💻

But when you accept things as they are, you free yourself from unnecessary suffering. You let go of the emotional baggage which comes from focusing on a problem, so you have a clear head to better focus on solutions. 😊

The Stoic philosopher Epictetus said: “What upsets people is not things themselves but their judgments about the things.” When you’re judging, you cannot accept.

🌟 When you argue with reality, you always lose. 🌟

If I told you to NOT think about a pink elephant, what are you thinking about right now? And what if I told you to STOP thinking about it, what remains in your mind? 🐘

But what if I told you to be absolutely okay that the thought of a pink elephant crossed your mind? Be absolutely okay, accepting of the thought, and then choose to let it go. I’d be curious to know how fast your mind starts to focus on other things. 😉








Why We Should ACCEPT Our Emotions!


Last Friday I went into the city to help out at an event at the United Center. Needless to say, Service was the name of the game once again. 🙌

At this point that should just be my middle name, right?! 😂

I woke up at 4am, boarded the train at 5:20am, arrived in the city at 6:20am, and got to the Center in time for the 7am meetup. I got to meet some old and new faces. I made a few new friends. I got to hear a bit of the speakers. And overall it was a fun time! 😄

It was around the late evening when I got back to Union Station to depart home back in the suburbs. If I had to describe how I was feeling at the time, it would simply be: exhausted. It was a fun day, but I was also ready to crash! 😝

I felt like a walking zombie as I wandered through the train station: half-alive, half-focused, and empty-headed. The only difference was I didn’t crave any human flesh but my bed so I could get some sleep! 🧟

I’ve experienced these kinds of moments a few times the past few years, these moments where I’m feeling so completely exhausted. But at the same time, I’m also fascinated with them too! 😲

For a temporary moment in time, I’ve become devoid of meaning and purpose. For a moment in time, I’m devoid of any thoughts about my life or who Donald Arteaga is. And all the while I’m feeling like a zombie, there’s also a part of my brain that is self-aware of it happening! 🧠

It’s why as I wait for the train to arrive, I keep trying change my focus to things other than my exhaustion. I start thinking about the things in my life I’m grateful for. I keep trying to change my focus to things other than my current feelings. It works for short boosts…but my mind quickly wanders back to the visual of my bed Bed. Bed. Bed. Bed. Bed. 🛏️

Getting to my bed, for that moment in time, had become my Ultimate Life Purpose! 😂

It sounds silly, right?! But perhaps Abraham Maslow was right when he said the #1 need of human beings is getting their Physiological needs met: food, water, shelter, clothing, and (yes!) sleep. 😴

🛑 But there was an even bigger problem I wasn’t seeing at the time!


“What was it?”

👎 I was trying to pushing away what my emotions were communicating.

👎 I was trying to deny what I was feeling.

👎 I was refusing to accept my current state of exhaustion.

I share this post with you all because I believe there’s a CRUCIAL detail so many of us keep missing when we’re trying to change our emotions. And because we miss this detail, we are REPRESSING what we feel rather than ACCEPTING it! ⚠️

What’s the difference between repression and acceptance of our emotions? 🤔

📌 Repressing is denying to yourself the emotions you are currently feeling. You pretend like they’re not there with a mask of another emotion. When you’re angry and deny you’re feeling angry, that anger may build up and come bursting out later in a way you don’t want it to.

📌 Accepting is acknowledging what you’re currently feeling AND being okay with it. You may not like the current emotions you’re feeling, but you nonetheless accept them before you make the conscious choice to change them.

The problem was I was repressing, rather than accepting, my feelings of exhaustion. I kept telling myself: “Wake up! Don’t be tired!” and tried pushing it away with alternatives. 👊

🌟 It wasn’t until I accepted my feelings of exhaustion that its focus in my mind started to dissolve. 🌟

Have you ever had a moment where you felt resentment towards someone, and you kept telling yourself you couldn’t “let it go”? Acceptance is another form of letting go. But in order to let go of your resentment, you have to first acknowledge you’re feeling resentment, and be okay that you’re feeling it.

🌟 We can’t work on an effective solution if we won’t acknowledge what the problem is. 🌟

Our society likes to tell us what we should and shouldn’t feel. We should be strong when we’re feeling weak. We should be happy when we’re sad. It’s all with good intentions, and they have a point about changing our emotions. The problem is they miss the detail of Acceptance.

🌟 In order for anyone to change their emotions effectively, they first have to accept the current emotions they’re feeling and be okay with them. Then the change can begin! 🌟

🛑 THE WRONG WAY: “I shouldn’t feel depressed. I will force myself to feel happy.”

✅ THE RIGHT WAY: “I am feeling depressed. There’s nothing wrong with that; it’s a natural human emotion. But now I do want to feel happier, so I am going to take actions to make that happen!”

As I was riding on the train back home I started to accept my feelings. I let myself be okay with feeling exhausted. I didn’t negatively judge myself for it. After all, I had been awake for over 18 hours. Could I really blame my body for feeling like that?! I can definitely tell you: I had a DEEP sleep that night! 💤

So again: in order for anyone to change their emotions effectively, they first have to accept the current emotions they’re feeling and be okay with them. Then the change can begin! 🌟

If this made sense to you, I’d appreciate it if you SHARE this post. I know there are many who need to hear this in a society that encourages repression over acceptance! 😔

Much love! ❤️ #TranscendLabels










– I accept who I am, both innately and who I can become. I accept I am perfectly imperfect. I accept both my flaws and my gifts. I accept me just as I am this present moment. 👤

– I accept the world and all its complexities. I accept I won’t know everything there is to know about this experience called Life. I accept knowing the lack of knowing. 🌎

– I accept people and where they are on their journeys. I accept the diversity of this world as well as the common humanity we all share. I accept people in both their uniqueness and their sameness.👥

– I accept so I judge less and see things as they are, not worse than they are. I accept so the Inner Critic in my head has no power over me anymore. I accept because whatever I resist in my life continues to persist. I accept so I can choose to finally let go. 🙌

In this fast-paced world we live in, there’s a profound sense of peace when you’re able to break free from it. My first evening here in San Diego, I walked down to the waterfront. I had no specific idea where I was going or how long I would be walking. Not much thought, I just went. 👣

I walked along the water. I sat by the docks. I moseyed through the park. I played some music through my earphones. I stopped at a nearby 7/11. I had no where to go. I had no where to be. A thought of judgment came across my mind: “Do something!” But I let myself be okay with these very facts. I accepted it. And it was absolutely beautiful. ❤️

As I walked back to my Airbnb, thinking about the power of acceptance, I decided I was going to take a photo to present with this post. But before I was about to take it, I saw the lights behind me. A local train’s bright lights was making its presence, and for whatever reason it was there, it simultaneously illuminated the realizations in my mind. 🚆

Accept, my friends. 😊 #TranscendLabels








How AUTISM Helped Me DEFY the Odds! (PERSONAL)


I use to consider myself a very introverted person, very shy, and very set in my own closed routines. I was more of a thinker than a doer and more a dreamer than a leader. Can you relate to that? If not, can you think of someone in your life who was like that? 🤔

Being diagnosed with Autism in 7th grade was probably the starting point for me, the point where I confirmed these ideas to myself about who I was: something was ‘wrong’ in my brain. 🧠 “I have Autism. It explains why I feel the way I feel. It’s just something that’s a part of me; I can’t change it.” 🤷‍♂️

But even at the time I remember feeling like I didn’t want to be labeled like this. I saw the label before me with all its negativity, a label I needed to object and rebel from. 👊 I saw the stigmas of this label becoming my reality, and once I started seeing it reflected in other people’s behaviors towards me it frightened me to the core! 😨

I have vivid memories from school where I refused to accept new accommodations because of the new label. I was now being offered additional time on tests, opportunities to leave class to ‘cool down’, and every single time I refused. I was being treated differently. I hadn’t changed, but with my new label I had changed in the eyes of everyone else. 😟 Has someone ever said something about you that you knew wasn’t true? Did you ever feel like you just wanted to jump on the defense and say: “That is absolutely NOT TRUE!” 🤬

With my new label I was constantly reminded about my new-given identity: what I couldn’t do, what my limitations were, and what struggles I’d have the rest of my life. 🔮 Very little was I ever reminded about all my current strengths or what I could do. It was mostly the echoes from a set of diagnostic criteria. 📖

In psychology, the term is referred to as a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy. In sociology, it’s referred to as the Labeling Theory. To put it simply: If a person holds a belief in their mind about someone else’s future expectations, the person will unconsciously help in influencing the other person into fulfilling those expectations. 🤔

So for example, if a parent holds a child to very low expectations the odds are very likely the child won’t ever go past the ones the parent already set for them. They will only achieve the most minimal, the expectations set by the parent. 😲


But then at one point I finally decided I was going on my own path. These past few years I’ve learned that everything starts with Me: I must take control of my life, how I choose to see it, and how I’m going to live it. 👍

📌 Dale Carnegie explained it through his principles to Win Friends and Influence People.

📌 Stephen Covey said it with his Habit of Being Proactive.

📌 The Stoics taught it through their principles of self-control.

📌 The Existentialists shared it through the creation of meanings.

📌 Individuals like Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. excelled it through their example.

It’s the power of helping OURSELVES FIRST before we start trying to help the rest of the world. It’s about taking CONTROL over our emotions rather than letting them and our environment control us. It’s about living our lives for a PURPOSE greater than just ourselves. It’s about a “dream”, a vision of a greater future for all of humanity. Most importantly, it’s about YOU DEFINING YOUR LIFE. 🌎

What I’ve come to realize again and again is that my past does not have to equal the future. I’ve realized I am more capable than what any label or diagnosis will dictate. 🙌

Have you ever taken a personality test and it gave you a result you wholeheartedly believed in? “Congrats, you’re an INFJ!” The problem with these tests is they can tell you who you are NOW. But they don’t tell you who you’ll necessarily be in the FUTURE. We can change as well as mentally evolve. It’s a part of who I may be now, but it’s not the final destination! 🛣️

I’ve realized that I ultimately will define Me, not someone else, not a test, and not a set of diagnostic criteria. Otherwise I keep a fixed identity for the rest of my life…nah! 😉

So this year I’ve been on a mission to Transcend Labels. I am showing the world what’s possible, to show others how to look beneath the surface, past the labels, past the stereotypes, and to see each other for who we all are. 👥

I truly believe when we do this we’ll start seeing the humanity within each other, see each other as human beings, and see that we are all more alike than we like to believe. With that not only comes greater understanding for our neighbors but most importantly an unconditional love, because the realization comes: “That person is also Me.” ❤️

I see lasting change in the world happening through the individual from the inside-out, not the outside-in. I believe that the better we can be for ourselves, the better we can be for others. 🌎

Gandhi said: “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. Everyone has an opinion, but there are fewer people out there who ever set the example. Will we be the next examples?! 👌


I hope this resonates with many of you. I would appreciate it if you could share this post with others, whoever you believe will also benefit from these words. If there are any additional areas I can add value to your life as well as in the blogging community, please let me know! 🙂

My areas of expertise include:

👍 Detail-oriented, Thoroughness

👍 Quality-over-quantity Focused

👍 Analytical, Systemic Thinking

👍 Emotional intelligence (plus 10 years in Customer Service)

👍 Social media, Building Engagement


With lots of gratitude,

Donald “Ace” Arteaga ❤️