Forgiving others and especially yourself can seemingly be a very hard task to accomplish. However, if you have pent-up feelings that have lasted for a long time, then you will need to start forgiving in order to move forward. The process begins when you start identifying the feelings that you may have about yourself or what others have done to you over the course of your life.
“When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.” – Katherine Ponder
Here are 10 ways that you can begin to forgive others as well as yourself so you can start to move forward with your life and live it the way you want.
Bring in Friends and Family
It is a natural reaction to run or flee from those who know you best when something goes wrong. While that may work for the time in which you are the most emotional, it is best to seek comfort with those who love you. This is because they know who you are and will not define you by the mistakes you have made. So, when you calm down, seek comfort with your friends.
Continue to Grow
You did not pop out of the womb with the knowledge of a university professor, you had to grow along the way in order to reach where you are at now. You may not be where you want at this moment, but that doesn’t mean you will not get there. Over the course of your life you have made decisions that have pulled you away from your goals, mistakes that have set you back, and now you are dealing with the feelings of not getting what you want out of life. The good news is that everyone learns and grows which means that you still have opportunities.
Failure is really a part of success. Thomas Edison failed to create the light bulb over 10,000 times before he finally succeeded. He viewed failure as simply a method or approach that did not work and he kept on trying. You need to draw the same lesson from life as Thomas Edison and keep pressing forward.
Leave Everything on the Field
This is a saying used in sports to motivate athletes to do their best. It also applies to everyone’s life that it is important to do your best and give it everything that you have. Remember that you are going to make mistakes and not everything is going to turn out your way. However, when you have given it your best shot and it was not enough, then there are no regrets. This is because whatever would have pushed you across that line was beyond your power to control. When it’s beyond your power, then you have no one to blame. Everyone makes mistakes and you need to take that into account when reflecting on the past.
“To forgive is the highest, most beautiful form of love. In return, you will receive untold peace and happiness.” – Robert Muller
Let Go of the Past
This is one of the most difficult things for so many people to do is letting go of the past. You live in the world of the present which means that the past is only found in your memories. This means that you need to put the past into the proper perspective and learn to move forward with your life. It’s never easy, but it is meant to be if you want your dreams to come true.
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” – Louis B. Smedes
With every ending comes a new beginning. If you have lost your job, a relationship has fallen apart, or you are not in the place you want to be, then it’s time to start again. When you see the number of people who overcame so much in their lives go on to succeed in fulfilling their dreams, that means you can do it as well. When something is over, that means there is a new beginning where you can pick up the pieces and start anew. Don’t hang on to what is gone, instead, look forward to what life offers for you.
“Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.” – C. S. Lewis
One great way to forgive others is to say thanks because they have helped bring you to a new place in your life. You would not be the person you are now without the influence of friends, family, and co-workers. So, even if you have been treated badly, understand that you have discovered something about yourself that will help you become a better person. Also remember to say thanks to those who care about you so that you can move forward with your life.
After you have gone through analyzing what went wrong, that means the next attempt will be better because you have learned what mistakes were made. You are now in a stronger place because of the analysis that you have done to ensure that you understood what went wrong and now can fix the problem. Of course, you may discover that this particular path is not the best for you or perhaps an opportunity has passed. Yet, there are other opportunities and challenges that await you, so go forward and try again.
“Forgive all who have offended you, not for them, but for yourself.” – Harriet Nelson
You Are Not Defined by Mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes, but that doesn’t mean that your life will be defined by them. It is how you respond and progress that demonstrates your character. No one is perfect and you should not define yourself by the mistakes and screw-ups that you have caused. It is in how you learn and grow from them that will be taken into account.
You Are Only Human
It pays to remember that no one is perfect and that includes you. Everyone makes mistakes, including those that you should know better, but it happens. It also pays to remember that your intellect is combined with a range of emotions that may cloud your better judgment from time to time. This means that the actions you regret are not born out of right or wrong, but rather are influenced by feelings that you may not fully control. While this is not permission to continue to have poor judgment, it is an understanding that everyone screws up even with the best of intentions. So, realize that you are not perfect and go from there.
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” – Mahatma Gandhi