Don’t give forgiveness because it’s the right thing to do. Rather because it’s the most liberating thing to do. When you forgive someone or yourself, you wash your body of grudges, judgement and hate. Forgive just as much for yourself as for others. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Give people a second chance. Even when that person is you. Nobody is perfect. And so that isn’t something we shouldn’t hold against each other or ourselves. Practice forgiveness and moving on.
To heal a wound, we have to stop touching it. To move on from the past, we have to stop reliving it. It will take time, willpower, forgiveness, courage and compassion. But it will get better, as long as we keep ourselves moving forwards and looking forwards. That’s the direction we should be heading.
Sometimes it’s better to ask for forgiveness, than to ask for permission. Sometimes it’s better to make a mistake, than to not try at all. Sometimes it’s better to put yourself first, than live by someone else’s rules. Live passionately, not cautiously.
If you were to give yourself advice, how different would it be to the advice you’d give a friend in a similar situation? We often tend to be harsher on ourselves, less forgiving and sympathetic, with higher expectations and levels of criticism. We don’t always give ourselves advice, but give ourselves lectures. But we deserve some compassion, love and understanding from ourselves. We’re not perfect. We make mistakes. And that’s ok. If we learn and grow, there’s no unwritten rule saying we should punish ourselves. We have to take care of ourselves. Don’t be so hard on yourself.
Our bodies are simply a package. Our humanity is the gift inside. Some bodies may demand attention where others go unnoticed. But with time, they will all wear away. Youth fades, beauty fades, and even health fades. But our humanity doesn’t. Not unless we let it. Our kindness, forgiveness, strength, passion, love – these, and many others, are the gifts that matter. Don’t be careless with them. Nurture them, share them and treasure them.
Those who’ll win are those who are driven by love rather than hate, by passion rather than anger, by success rather than revenge. Those who’ll win are those who will take the high road, who will admit their mistakes, and who will offer their forgiveness. Those who’ll win are those who learn to accept the finality of the past and the uncertainty of the future. Those who’ll win are those who fight for something rather than against something and who measure their success by what they have rather than what they don’t. Those who’ll win are those who believe they can, but still put the work in. You can be a winner too.
If you can lessen someone’s burden, you will make a difference. If you can listen to someone’s troubles, you will make a difference. If you can wipe away someone’s tears, you will make a difference. If you can forgive someone’s mistake, you will make a difference. If you can ease the pain of a broken heart, you will make a difference. No matter how small or simple, our actions are significant. If the world can breathe a little better because you lived, it can make all the difference – if not to the whole wide world, then at least someone’s whole world.
The world needs you to pursue your dreams, to follow your heart, to trust your instincts. The world needs you to stop procrastinating, to start making plans, to try and try again. The world needs you to use your voice, to stand up for what you believe in, to inspire others. The world needs you to love, to forgive, to move on, to hold on. The world needs you to care about something and do something about it. The world needs you, in order to keep turning. If dreams go, life is a barren field frozen in snow.
It’s easy to say we would have done something differently. It’s also easy to wallow in a mistake. The hard part isn’t battling with the guilt, humiliation or frustration, it’s rather accepting your mistakes, learning from them and moving on. Sounds simple but we don’t do it often enough. Sometimes you’ve got to forgive yourself. Sometimes you’ve got to push past the pessimism. Because taking the easier road or the harder one distinguishes the fighters from the cowards, the believers from the doubters. It’s hard to fight for yourself and to believe in yourself. But who knows what you can achieve if you do. A mistake recharges the fighter and the believer. Mistakes happen to everyone, but it’s up to you what happens next.
Hate is a deceiving emotion. We often think it makes us feel powerful, mighty and fierce. But hate is devious, manipulative and subtle. It slowly clouds over your mind. It slowly weighs you down. And it slowly eats away at your heart. Hate is a burden we carry without properly realising. It never does as much damage to another as it does to ourselves. Try practicing love instead. And I don’t only mean love in the traditional sense of kindness and passion. But also forgiveness, and if not forgiveness then acceptance, and if not acceptance then tolerance. Try practicing love with yourself as much as with others. It works wonders.