Mental health seems to be on everyone’s minds these days, especially when it comes to guys. After all, times are changing, with more and more men speaking out about the issues that they have going on in their lives, rather than ignore them by internalizing them all.

In fact, men’s mental health is at such a turning point that, just today, the National Basketball Association (NBA), just announced a new program designated specifically for mental health and wellness for its players. Talk about a progressive occurrence, huh? Especially in professional sports.

Likewise, just a few weeks ago, we published a bunch of mental health articles that were linked to Mental Health Awareness Week, with us giving a lot of advice on how to stay positive and try to live your best life. It can be difficult, but, by changing your mindset, you can become the person you want to be.

Since the topic of mental health is so important and we think it’s something guys need to talk more about, we’re giving you a piece on self-acceptance today, helping you understand just how critical it is to your success.

Ignore the internal voice of doubt

It’s only natural for us to get down at certain time in life. Whether that comes after something significant happens — like a breakup or job loss — or just because we’re having one of “those days,” how we think and speak to ourselves internally can play a major role in how we feel about ourselves day-to-day. When a person continues to harp on the negative things about themselves, it constricts us and can lower our confidence and self-esteem.

Stop comparing yourself

Look, we all wish we had traits of other people, but notice the key word there; traits! To say we wish we were someone else is doing a disservice to the person you really are, belittling yourself and refusing self-acceptance. Part of good mental health is practising good habits and not trying to be anyone else, as it makes you feel like you’re living a life that’s not your own. Refuse the temptation to see other people and wondering how much better they have it, because, when you take a look at yourself, you’ve got it pretty good, too.

Have compassion

Be honest with yourself. As we’ve mentioned above, it’s easy to fall into traps of living for other people and comparing yourself to what society deems as more successful. That said, start showing yourself some compassion by accepting who you are and recognizing certain areas in which you can improve your life. Once you love yourself, you’ll be more confident and start to show that same positivity towards others. A few ways to do this is by acknowledging things you don’t like and making steps to changing them, embracing your imperfections and accept compliments other people give you. Being humble is important, but it’s OK to say you love yourself, too!

Embrace the good, the bad and the ugly

No matter who you are, what you look like, how much success you have or how happy you might appear, we’ve all got flaws. To ignore these or, worse, deny them is just a lie to yourself. Once you realize you’ve got to take the good with the bad and the ugly, you’re going to feel a sense of relief and happiness in your life. Nobody is perfect, so focus on your strengths, understand your weaknesses and work on improving the areas you want to work on for you, not anyone else.