On this path of getting to know ourselves and learning how to love ourselves more truthfully and unconditionally, we have one more task to do – forgive ourselves. This step usually catches people by surprise. After all the work we put in to accept ourselves, we never for a moment think that a part of the journey would involve any anger or disappointment and therefore what is there to forgive?
Once we start loving ourselves the way we want to, we come across a difficult truth: we used to be our worst enemy. We were the one that held the key to this self-love all this time. This is where feelings like anger and blame might come from. We realize that it was us all along. And this is where we need forgiveness the most. Forgiving ourselves for all the times we spent worrying what other people thought, for all the times we decided to change ourselves to fit in, for all the times we shut down our own truth for love. We have to manage to forgive ourselves for the negative self-talk we let reside in our minds throughout these years. To forgive ourselves for pushing aside our real Self in order to be someone else, someone “better”, “normal”, “different”.
The main thing that we need to focus on in this action of forgiving is that we have always been doing the best that we could. Everything that we did, every time we hid, every time we molded ourselves – this has been out of our best intentions. We were doing what we could with what we had. The knowledge, the awareness, all of that came later, and we were not able to nurture ourselves the way that we can now. Every time we feel like we failed, there was a reason behind it, and failing depends on our perspective. If we grew up in a family that put much emphasis on how we looked, we probably developed a pressure to appear a certain way. This pressure turns into self-criticism. Laziness, for example, comes from perfectionism. When we are performing every minute of our life, we will need rest at one point. Selfishness comes from years of pushing our needs aside. It is okay that we want to take after so much time of giving and neglecting ourselves. In a way, we have never made a mistake – we have just been reacting to what we received.
But now we have decided to stop reacting. We don’t want to live our lives in reaction mode. We want to proactively search for our truths, honor ourselves and maintain this self-love that we are discovering. There is a saying “One forgives to the degree that one loves.” Do we not love ourselves enough then? We need to know that we deserve forgiveness. Just because we were wrong, it does not mean that we are doomed. Quite the contrary, now that we have found the right way, the loving way – it means we get to forgive ourselves, each and every day, for the times we did not know better.
Author: Eva Feldman, as a highly empathetic person and a psychologist, she connects her understanding of the human psyche with spirituality, focusing on consciousness and awareness. Her goal is to share knowledge and passion about human beings in a simple and understandable way, and in that way to contribute to raising awareness in this day and age. Masters degree in Psychology, education in Art Expressive Therapy, as well as personal interests of social justice, mindfulness and Being, make for an interesting addition to her practices of dance, yoga and teaching. She found a purpose in living life fully and encouraging others to do so.
Follow Eva on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/toomucheva/
I remember the first time I heard someone say that a resentment was like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die. This made no sense to me. See my resentments were built on a platform of self-righteous indignation. Oh come on, you know what that is. It’s that look that Steven Seagal gets on his face in all his movies, that feeling that he uses to justify him killing everyone in sight.
See I felt that what was done to me entitled me to have the hatred and contempt in my heart for another person. Somehow it was empowering me and helped me to deal with the pain I felt from the atrocities that were perpetrated upon me.
That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Hatred and contempt held in a heart is toxic. Because as much as I want to say that it was only for this one person that harmed me, hatred and contempt can not be caged like that. It flowed and seeped into all areas of my life. In fact it took on a life of its own.
How much love can a heart full of hatred hold? I felt as though this person could never deserve my forgiveness. Not forgiving them caused them pain and suffering like they caused me. How can refusing to forgive someone who is not asking for or seeking my forgiveness effect anyone but myself?
I know for myself that it keeps me stuck. I have fooled myself into thinking that somehow refusing to forgive is actually a way of dealing with and working on the situation. That could not be further from the truth. It is how I deny, hide and avoid the problem and its solution. No matter how hard or many times I push it down it continues to pop up.
Avoidance and denial are exhausting and time consuming. I liken it to trying to out run a train, eventually I will get tired and have to stop to rest. When this happens the train rolls right over the top of me. When this happens I feel abused again, only this time I am doing it to myself.
I am holding on to something with a death grip that is killing me. Not a physical death but a death of spirit, soul and mind. In some ways this type of death is worse than a physical death. In physical death the suffering ends, not so in a death of spirit, soul and mind.
For most of my life I have misunderstood forgiveness. I thought that these people who had hurt me did not deserve my forgiveness. Like my forgiving them would be the key to opening a locked door for them to something they were being denied. In truth it was I who had a locked door denying myself the relief and healing that comes with forgiving.
I had always thought that forgiveness meant absolution. They are still responsible for their actions and that is for them to deal with. My forgiving is for me not for them. It is so I can let go and move on, allowing myself to step out of this spiritual and emotional loop that does nothing but hurt and drain me.
With hatred in my heart I can not live the life based in love that I want. Today I chose to release the hatred from my heart to make room for the love I need and desire. Today I chose forgiveness.
Author: Paul Hellwig
Paul is a Spiritual Life Coach specializing the Healing of Childhood Wounding and Addictions Recovery. I am a recovering addict myself with over 25 years clean. I have spent the last 25 years of my life on a spiritual and healing journey and I am now dedicating my life to help others do the same.
healingbearlifecoaching.com / @bear_healing
Humans are a gifted, blessed species with a level of spiritual free will that often goes unused in modern day society. It’s easy to feel doubt, to feel less than capable, letting time pass us by.
But humans have more power than they are led to believe. The great I AM pulsates through everything with confident divinity. Every passing moment, a person’s reality is created by a magical and synergistic blend of beliefs, intentions, thoughts and actions. Negative experiences from the past can skew one’s future reality by distorting their beliefs. The beliefs humans carry around initiate the trajectory for what may or may not come into their future reality. To let go of the old and embrace the new requires one to let go of past experiences, adopting a new mindset of hope.
As world-class rock band Rush puts it, “The future disappears into memory, with only a moment between. Forever dwells in that moment; hope is what remains to be seen.”
Each person’s subconscious mind holds a culmination of affirmations that play quietly, over and over inside their head. These thoughts make the person feel a certain way, influencing how they see the world around them. These affirmations may be negative or positive and may stay with a person, as long as they let these deep embedded thoughts remain a part of them. These affirmations are often derived from past experiences, or they may be stored because the person holds tight to the opinions of other people.
Every action that we engage in, every word that we breathe, every intention that we conjure, is sent out into time and space in our waking universe. What we do to others, what we do to the planet, is what we ultimately do to ourselves. This is how the human race is connected. When one gossips about others, they are only bringing more gossip upon themselves, into their reality, perpetuating a cycle of negative emotions. When one hurts another, the victim can choose to forgive, effectively ending the cycle of pain. This is why it’s important for humans to be mindful for what they ask into their lives, treating each one of their own thoughts and actions with caution and reverence. The golden rule applies: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
Two of the most powerful affirmations in the universe are the phrases “I AM,” and “I CAN.” These simple phrases can be turned into guiding principles that strengthen a person’s ability to heal, to mend relationships, to forgive, to move through difficult times.
A person defines who they are by consciously declaring the I AM’s in their life. With concentrated, precision-thought and mindful meditation, positive I AM’s can transform a person’s life, by opening up new doors, opportunities and relationships. Reality can change for anyone willing to move boldly in faith.
I CAN is a similar powerful set of guiding beliefs. What is the human race capable of if they embrace the power of I AM and I CAN positively? How do humans limit their own ability to learn and grow by holding onto negative affirmations and bitter accord?
As Rush so eloquently puts it, “The treasure of a life, is the measure of love and respect — the way you live, the gifts that you give.”
Sources for this article include:
About the author:
Lance Johnson is a passionate researcher, learner, writer, and healer. Lance and his wife invite you to check out their line of clean and conscious body care products at www.allnaturalfreespirit.com.