First of all, you MUST know your identity in Christ before you can break free from the need for acceptance.
Do note that the acceptance I mean here is the strong urge to belong, or fit into a certain social group (friends, clubs, etc).
Picture those high school movies where the girl, or guy tries very desperately to fit into the group of cool girls, or the jocks and makes an absolute fool of himself/herself in the process.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” – Ephesians 2:10 (NLT)
“So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family.” – Ephesians 2:19 (NLT)
P.S: I’d strongly advise that you read the whole chapter Ephesians 2 (NLT)
Once you understand and have established your place in Christ, then you can begin the journey of not struggling to be accepted.
I’ll be listing below just four ways by which I got over the need for acceptance.
- Know Your Identity in Christ: Like I said earlier, knowing your identity in Christ will help you get over the need for acceptance. In fact, it’s a major key!.
When you know that you are God’s masterpiece, a city set on a hill, and a light to the world, you will never, ever feel the need to lessen yourself to fit into a small sphere of people who will (most likely) not add value to your life.
- Love Yourself: When I say ‘love yourself’, I do not mean being self-centered, or selfish. What I mean by loving yourself is to understand and clean up your thought process to produce a new and improved version of you.
Look at it this way, when you clean up your thought process, you begin to see yourself in a new light. If you used to battle with low-self esteem, you’ll begin to break free from that cycle. If you thought that your sins were too many for God to love you, you’ll begin to break free from that lie
- Surround Yourself With People That Build You Up: Rather than struggling to be accepted by people who will add no moral value to your life, surround yourself with those who will build you up
If you would like to grow in your faith, it is only right that you surround yourself with people who have grown in Christ. If you would like to improve in your studies, link up with smart, intelligent people who are excelling in their academics.
Therefore, if you seek community, make sure IT IS WITH THE RIGHT SET OF PEOPLE. Remember that the friends you keep ultimately make you or mar you!.
- Understand That You Might Feel Left Out: You know how sad (betrayed, is more like it) it could be when your friends sly you and go for that beach party?, my dear, you have to know that you’re going to be getting a lot of that.
When you realize you do not need to fit into the ‘popular crowd’, you’re ultimately going to lose friends, or lose interest in so many things. When you begin to disassociate yourself from the popular crowd, they’ll ultimately begin to lose interest in you. You won’t get invited to parties anymore, your seat at the lunch table with the cool guys will be occupied when you walk past, and so many other things.
What I want you to know is that you won’t die, believe me.
It could seem horrible at first, but as time goes by, you’ll be alright.
I know all these things are easier said than done, but know that when you begin to work towards loosing the need for acceptance, ultimately you go dey alright!.
Please do share your thoughts on this topic as a comment below, I would love to read what you think.