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Self-Forgiveness: The Only Way Forward

by jussiecatwriter (follow)
Growth (25)      Mistakes (13)      Forgiveness (8)     

a woman engaging in self compassion
You can't change the past. You did the best you could do at the time. Don't stagnate. Forgive yourself and move forward.

Often, when we act in ways that are not in line with who we want to be, that is, we’ve made a mistake, we waste a lot of time criticising ourselves for having acted so, to boot. There are many reasons why self-flagellation or condemnation should be replaced by self-forgiveness.

1.You are human. Part and parcel of that is making mistakes. Every single person on the planet, both now and in the past (except for Jesus) made mistakes. If you haven’t made mistakes, this would be a reason in itself to worry.

2. Beating yourself up for mistakes made is a waste of time. You are dwelling on the past in a way that doesn’t help you, and it shouldn’t be confused for being a method to decrease your likelihood of making the same mistake in the future. All you are doing is making yourself feel bad. You can't change what happened.

3.Mistakes are actually a wonderful opportunity to learn, grow and do things differently next time. By seeing where we went wrong (without self-condemnation), we can realise this does not work, and decide consciously to take a different course of action next time. Edison saw each failed light bulb as a way not to make this now famous invention. He saw his ‘failures’ as part of his road to success.

4.You always do the best you can at the time, with what you have. If you stepped back in time, can you see how you saw it as the best way to act? This is another reason not to criticise yourself. If you knew differently, you would do differently.

5.Not forgiving yourself leads to low self-esteem, low morale and low self-respect. This causes future problems such as unconsciously feeling unworthy of future successes.

6.If we see things that didn’t work out as ‘mistakes’ rather than learning experiences, we are immediately in a negative mindset. Rather than seeing what could be done right, and focussing on this, we are stuck on what went wrong. This is, as mentioned, a waste of time, and self-defeating.

7.If we begin to see things in the light of failures or mistakes, over time, we will begin to be afraid to try new things where there’s no guarantee of success. We have categorised mistakes as something to be feared, something terrible instead of something that happens to us all that isn’t a big deal and that we can learn from. This can then limit our personal growth.

8.In this life, there will be plenty enough people to criticise and upbraid us, without doing it to ourselves. Be a friend to yourself – no-one else can give you the support you need.

If we can see mistakes as side-steps on the road to success, a normal and expected part of our journey, we will reach our destination more quickly and in a better frame of mind than if we criticise and condemn ourselves.

# Forgiveness
# Self-Forgiveness
# Mistakes
# Self-Compassion
# Growth
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