How To Forgive Yourself

How To Forgive Yourself

The Keys To Self-Forgiveness at The Life OasisHow many of us beat ourselves up, over and over again, about…well…everything?  Being able to forgive one’s self is one of the very first steps to moving forward and growing from any mistake. 

Do any of these self-talk statements sound familiar to you?

I should have done this differently or better…

I shouldn’t have done that at all…

I shouldn’t have said what I did…

I should have expressed what I really felt…

If only I were a better person (mother, father, spouse, friend, coworker, boss) I’d have reacted differently…

If only I had studied harder…

If only I had cared more…

If only I had cared less…

Why didn’t I take a stand…

Why didn’t I reach out to a friend…

Should have, shouldn’t have, if only, why didn’t I….only difference is what follows that with your own words.  These are all precursors of thoughts that lead to habits of non-self-forgiveness.  However you phrase the thoughts that you castigate yourself with, it’s this breakdown of your internal energy which is catabolic and keeps you stuck in a downward spiral, holding you back from truly growing from any experience.

The fact of the matter is, we actually have an easier time forgiving other people than we do ourselves because we don’t personalize other people’s actions as much.  More often than not, it’s easier to feel compassion towards others, because we can rationalize that they were doing the best that they could at the time (which is true!).  It is, however, more difficult to extend that same compassion toward ourselves.

When our inner critics tell us that we’re not good enough and that we’ve done something wrong, many of us believe the words that our gremlins speak to us. It’s tough to forgive yourself if, at your core, you believe that you’re not good enough.

Self-forgiveness begins when you allow yourself to understand that you ARE good enough and that in fact, you were born and already are perfect. 

Here are a few ways that you can start developing strong habits of self-forgiveness:

  1. Have Compassion For Yourself – Because you are perfect by design, you will still sometimes do, say, or think things that you wish you hadn’t, an important key to self-forgiveness is to avoid and eventually eliminate self-judgment – to have compassion for yourself.  You work so hard developing compassion for others in your life…and the first place to really start doing that effectively is to have compassion for your own little trips and blunders in life.

  2. Increase Focus On Growth And Learning – When you notice or realize that a mistake has been made and as you start to feel that unpleasant feeling of seeming “failure”, you can look at it as a golden opportunity to grow and say:

    “What is it that I’m doing here that doesn’t fit into my puzzle?”
    “What’s not working here for me?”
    “What am I supposed to learn from this?”

    the next step is to just simply make an adjustment to avoid making the same mistake the next time.  Sure you hear people say this all the time, but the question is have you really integrated this habit into your daily routine?  You will inevitably make a mistake in life and however large or small, this is an important habit to keep you moving forward.

  3. Start Tuning Out That Inner Critic - Highly productive and conscious people have a heightened awareness of things that work and don’t work in their lives because they are constantly growing from their experiences.  One of the key things they do is that they rarely give heed to, and in fact, many don’t even hear, that inner critic.  That internal Gremlin.  You already know how to ignore people that don’t serve your purpose in life on a regular basis, so why not do the same for that inner Gremlin that constantly strives to reinforce your deepest fears through self-blame.

Take some time today to really allow these simple concepts to sink in.  Give yourself the energy you deserve to start integrating or re-integrating these habits into your day today.  If you find yourself beating yourself up for the smallest things on a regular basis…Isn’t it time to break the cycle?

In the words of Saint Francis de Sales…

Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections but instantly set about remedying them – every day begins the task anew.

Did this post help or inspire you in anyway? If so, share it!  Also, let us know what your thoughts by commenting below or if there is anything else you do to help all of us be more self-forgiving.

 

2 Responses to "How To Forgive Yourself"

  1. kay grundhaus says:

    You should have used a picture of me for this blog.

 

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