Forgiving Yourself From Past Mistakes in 8 Steps

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Feeling bad with yourself and not accepting that all of us make mistakes is probably one of the worst struggles each human being will pass through their path on earth. During life, growing up keeps on happening, even if it doesn’t mean growing in centimeters or developing a new body. Learning, failing, making mistakes, achieving success: these all have one thing in common. They make part of us as persons. It is usually said that “what doesn’t kill, makes you stronger” and mistakes are exactly like that. They might hurt you, one more than others, they might be stuck in your life and make you face the consequences, but they will certainly teach you important lessons and not only become a ghost that hunts you.

To learn to forgive yourself and to look at your flaws and mistakes with wisdom requires time and a kind of understanding that only with time can be conquered. Usually, people tend to be blindsided by the errors they make, that it takes an undefinable amount of time to recover from it. This article wants to help you realize some aspects that might give you some peace of mind on the process of forgiving yourself from past mistakes.

Finding the silver-lining

Comprehending that there is always a silver-line through pain, failure, and mistakes is not something it will be immediately clear for you. In the beginning, it might feel like the whole world is tumbling down but remembering that each behavior has a reason behind it and a possibility of a new future is mandatory. When you make a mistake that potentially costs you time, money, a relationship, a hobby or your reputation, think about a silver-line. Maybe there isn’t one at the moment but in the future, there will be. Always. If someone hasn’t made certain kind of mistakes during their lives, they wouldn’t have benefited in enormous ways they did in the future, which is the present now. We learn, we shape, we gain new understandings, and we move on.

New goals

Using the pain of the past for something good in the future is one of the things you need to take care of. Reshape your goals and use the information gleaned as a method to give new purpose and direction to your life. What lessons are to be taken from those mistakes? How can you improve? How do you want these lessons to define you and your meaning? We can either chose what it is done and cannot be changed to grow or to dig a hole forever. Let us choose the first option and jump into a new way. Think about tomorrow and the change you will make happen.

What do you value in life now?

Reassessing what you value in life after all is one way to forgive yourself. Failure and mistakes help you as leverage. Sort out your values, what moves you and reorganize them so you won’t make the same mistakes again. Often, people live in reactionary mode and don’t really assess the things that they value the most. A value-driven life helps people to correct the wrongs from previously by focusing on what is really important.

Be grateful

Focus on gratitude to forgive yourself. What are you grateful for? Looking at what we have, instead of what we don’t have is a boost to find out what we are grateful for. The status quo people use to compare the past from the present is not clever. If we were always happy we wouldn’t know what real happiness mean. We need to experience sadness to understand happiness. We are surrounded by things we are grateful for, we just need to find out what it is.

Commit to change

Mistakes are sometimes made not only once, or twice, but three, four, five times. When we fail to make changes and continue with the same behavior that led to similar mistakes in the past, we can be blamed for it. Therefore, we need to adjust our behaviors and commit to a different pattern. If we make a mistake and we make a change to be better, it is easier to forgive ourselves.

Shifting priorities

We need to take care of ourselves and worry about our health and wellness. Living life like a robot makes it easy to lose sight of our priorities. Are you happy doing what you do? Can you change? Then do it! Rethink your life, your routine and be concerned about your psychological health as much as the physical one. Schedule time for you, do things you like, make sacrifices to a better future. Distract yourself from the stress and focus on being good. Accept you also have the right to fail but that life goes on, not just to you, but to everyone.

Help who needs to be helped and help you

Don’t live by the meaning of a centric life. “Me” should become “Us” and you should always remember that the good you do today will know its way back eventually. Be good to your community, give a smile to someone that looks sad, let someone walk into a place first, or give up your seat on the bus for someone who needs it the most. There are always things we can do for others, very simple ones. It might make the difference for them and, consequently, make the difference for you. If you help people you will understand that you are changing towards a better tomorrow.

Breathe and let go

What is in the past, cannot be changed. Thus, relax, breathe, let go. We are all just humans, after all. Don’t take everything so serious and learn that some things are just not worth your energy and time. Other people suffer, like you, other people feel what you might be feeling. You are not the first nor the last to be in the situation you might be. Let the universe guide you, or if you believe in any other forces of nature out there. All happens for a purpose, a reason. Let your life show it to you and let it go.

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Alex Wise served over 5 years as relationship expert helping women from around the world figure out the men in their love lives from an honest, male perspective. Alex is one of the contributors and editors for Loveawake.com dating website. He is passionate about thought leadership writing, and regularly contributes to various career, social media, public relations, branding, and online dating communities.
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