Forgiving Myself

This month we’ve been talking about forgiveness.  When forgiveness is brought up most people think about forgiving each other.  While forgiveness is something that can restore a relationship when both sides participate, forgiveness can also free you personally from things you’ve held onto.

Personally, I know that I have stuff in my life that I need to forgive myself for.  After all, we’re usually our harshest critics.  We usually demand much more from ourselves than others do, and with that high standard comes lots of opportunities to fall.  Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a really good thing that we hold ourselves to a standard; it means that we still have hope as people.  It also gives us a chance to really do something with our lives and have big opportunities for success.  Yes with those big opportunities for success do come with big opportunities to fail, but failure and success are both important parts of life, not things that should be avoided.

When we fail, often we’re the first person we need to forgive.  We can’t begin the healing process with anyone we’ve hurt without first having taken a look at ourselves and our responsibility and begun to forgive ourselves for our role in what happened.  Living as damaged people increases the likelihood that we’ll hurt others because we sometimes strike out because we feel hurt and lost.

Don’t wait for someone to forgive you, start forgiving yourself as soon as you realize that you’ve messed up and feel guilty.  Holding onto that guilt only makes things worse for you, and holds you back from resolving the situation.

“It is very east to forgive others their mistakes; it takes more grit and gumption to forgive them for having witnessed your own.” Jessamyn West

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