Forgiveness is truly healing, for both those that forgive and those that are forgiven. But what happens when we are dealing with loss and forgiveness is not offered or is impossible because those who could forgive have passed away?
When I asked for forgiveness it was not forthcoming. I struggled for ages with the notion that I would not receive the forgiveness I desperately wanted. Needed even. Whilst I was seeking forgiveness I was paralyzed, unable to let go and move on as I thought that was the only way I could be free. In time I realized that the reason I was so desperate for forgiveness was because I hadn’t yet forgiven myself.
Once I knew I had done everything I could to apologize and seek forgiveness, I realized that the only solution in order to really be able to let go and move on, was to forgive myself. Once I did, a great deal of healing took place. I felt more whole again, I felt freer. That was the beginning of my journey towards letting go and moving on.
If you are struggling to forgive yourself, every time you feel guilt or shame about how you behaved repeat this mantra in your head:
‘I did the best I knew how to at the time, given my life experience’
This in no way excuses your behavior but it will help you see things in context, with more self compassion. If you struggle with being self compassionate, please read my article titled ‘How to Silence Your Inner-Critic and Become Your Own Best Friend’ which is jammed packed with expert advice from leaders in the field, on how to be more self-compassionate.
The truth is we all make mistakes, sometimes with awful consequences. We need to offer ourselves self compassion and forgiveness first, before we can extend compassion and forgiveness to others.
Remember, if you are holding onto resentment, you are failing to let go and move on as well. If you are holding onto anger and resentment over a past hurt, please read my article titled ‘How to Liberate Yourself By Overcoming the Three Blocks to Forgiveness’.
In truth, both receiving and giving forgiveness is essential to have healthy hearts which are free from the diseased emotions of resentment and shame.
Do you need to forgive yourself? Are you holding on to resentment and anger? Can you see the advantages of offering forgiveness? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.