Forgiving Yourself – The Benefits
The one person who can cause you the most harm, be the most oblivious to your best interests, and the hardest for you to forgive: You!
By virtue of being human, you carry within you the potential to do self-destructive and foolish things. You can hurt your loved ones and yourself. You may be hurting right now because of something that you did in the past. Forgiving yourself is in many ways more difficult than forgiving others. Because you know your heart, you cannot get away with partial or false forgiveness.
The Dangers of Self-loathing
When you are unwilling to forgive yourself, you turn the force of your bitterness and anger inward. 2,000 years ago, a wise man wrote that “a house divided against itself cannot stand”. So too, you cannot function properly if you resent yourself. Your relationships, your work, your physical health and your emotional well being are all likely to suffer significantly if you are in a state of unresolved conflict with yourself.
You may be able to get by for a time, you may be able to fool those around you, but in the end you cannot be untrue to yourself. Being bitter against your own soul for the mistakes of your past will lead to only one thing: self-loathing.
If you are harbouring an unforgiving pain within, it is nearly impossible to forgive others. Pain piles upon pain, and your heart becomes hardened. In a tragically short amount of time, your self-loathing will turn into an angry, seething loathing of everything and everyone around you. When you reach that stage, you become very hard to love. The loathing that you broadcast will be returned to you — until you forgive yourself and begin restoring a healthy sense of self-worth.
The Joys of Self-forgiveness
Self-forgiveness brings about a corrected self-image. Free from blame, we can see our true potential and feel good about ourselves again. When you stop flagellating yourself for the sins of your past, your future looks much brighter. Forgiving yourself is not easy.
There can be no tearful confession, no heart to heart talk because all is already known and there is but one heart — a heart broken by a war that can have no winner.
Forgiving yourself requires a conscious effort to let go of the past and take an active step toward a happier and healthier future.There can be no falsity, no deceit.
If you are going to forgive yourself, you’ve got to go all the way. Let the mistakes of your past stay in the past. Push them away as if they never happened.
Written by Deva Ezhil Tamil Nadu, India