Hope :: Forgiving Yourself, Part 1

Photo by Alex Shute on Unsplash

In the past, I’ve written about how important it is to forgive other people. Today and next week, I’m going to talk about something that’s just as important: forgiving yourself.

I’m going to focus on two major points: forgiving yourself when something happens to you and forgiving yourself when you’ve done something to someone else.

Today’s post is about the former.

Forgiving ourselves is one of the most difficult things to do. Yes, it can be hard to forgive other people, but when it comes to forgiving ourselves? Nine times out of ten, we don’t even realize the self-loathing we hold tightly.

I had a lot of things happen to me when I was 10-12 years old. A lot of it surrounded bullying and betrayals. I forgave the ones who did those things months or a few years after the fact. But I couldn’t forgive myself; in my mind, I either let those things happen or I believed myself to not deserve better.

Anytime I hear about other people living in that mentality, I find myself internally yelling at them, “No, no! You didn’t let that happen. It just happened to you!” And, “You deserve to be loved for who you are! Don’t let anyone tell you different.”

The sad part is: I think we all tend to do that. We have so little grace for ourselves. We stack our self-expectations so high that it’s nearly impossible to meet those expectations.

I was in my mid-twenties when I finally started seeing myself in a grace-filled light.

Don’t get me wrong: it’s still a daily struggle and a moment-by-moment decision to love and forgive myself.

It’s hard work, but it’s worth it.

It’s okay to love and forgive yourself.

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