This week we focused on self-forgiveness for things we did and did not do. This means letting go of the shame, blame, guilt, and judgments we have towards ourselves without any resentment or anger. By forgiving ourselves, we are freeing ourselves from the past patterns and baggage we carry, so we can move forward to live a peaceful and joyful life. While practicing self-forgiveness, I kept in mind:
- My mistakes DO NOT define me. Regardless of what I did or did not do, I’m still a good person. And, despite my mistakes, doesn’t make me inconsiderate, unintelligent or unworthy.
- I’m only human just like everyone else, and that makes me prone to making mistakes, which is perfectly okay. Some of the things I do and do not do are going to piss people off, hurt feelings, and cause disagreements. But, I’m just doing my best with where I am, what the situation is and the information I have in the moment.
- I need to be non-judgmental and gentle with myself, because if I knew what I know now back then, I would’ve done differently, but I didn’t know at the time.
- Not to blame myself for the actions of others. Even though what I did or did not do may have influenced their reaction, I am not accountable or responsible for it—they are. So, if I don’t wish a friend happy birthday and they decide not talk to me or don’t know what direction I want to go with someone I like and they decide to leave, that’s their choice!
- To own my story. Acknowledging what I did and did not do and understanding the reason why I made the choice that I did, and how it contributed to the situation or the person’s reaction.
- Allow myself to experience life, which means giving myself permission to make mistakes, because experience is the best teacher.
Self-forgiveness definitely isn’t a cake walk, but it definitely is doable. Have I completely forgiven myself? No. At times, I found myself resorting back to why something happened or did not happen the way it did and was I to blame. Although I faced some obstacles and shortcomings this week, I did get better. I’m able to be more gentle with myself and see my past mistakes as learning opportunities. I still have a long, long way to go, but I’ll get there.
How did you practice self-forgiveness this week? Respond in the comment box below. Your response may give someone the inspiration they need.