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Acceptance Leads to Positivity

By Shun Hatano, Grade 11
My three years at Stanstead College were the best time of my life, and I'm hoping it will continue into the next year and a half. I believe that many of you are having the best experiences as well playing sports and hanging out with your friends. However, have you ever felt that you don`t belong to Stanstead or you have had a complaint about something? Complaints can be about sports, academics, relationships, and maybe about food. However, this complaint can be changed to positive by accepting the fact and accepting yourself.  
Acceptance is not always easy, but it is an important and necessary part of our life. It is about understanding and embracing who we are and where we come from and being comfortable in our skin. It is about understanding and respecting the differences that exist among us. Many things in life can be difficult to accept. I struggled to accept my flaws and imperfections, or the fact that certain things are out of my control.  
When I came to Stanstead, it was a different environment waiting for me. The culture was different, people were different, the weather was different, the language was different, and the food was different. This whole boarding school life was different. You have to wake up at 7:30 every morning with excitement, go eat breakfast with Mr. Marino’s music, go to class with nervousness, go to sports with a competitive mind, and go study with a sleepy brain. But these differences and accepting each of them are what’s going to make us stronger.  
But here`s the thing: acceptance doesn`t mean we have to like or approve of everything. It doesn`t mean we have to agree with everything either. Acceptance is just simply about understanding that something is the way it is, and not trying to change it or fight against it. 
Why is acceptance so important? Because it helps us to let go of negative emotions like anger and frustration. It allows us to move on from difficult situations. Without acceptance, you are automatically trying to blame someone or something. I believe this is the reason why sometimes we have complaints, or we feel like we don’t belong in the right place.  
To be able to accept the fact, you have to have an open mind. You have to take a moment to pause and be present with your thoughts and feelings. This will help you to understand and accept what is happening in the present moment. Lastly, and most importantly let go of judgment. Try to see things from other people`s perspectives and be open to new ideas from others. 
Again, acceptance is not always easy, but it`s worth the effort. Let`s try to practice acceptance in all aspects of our life and turn negative into positive.