We all slip up from time to time. We let our fears get the best of us, we procrastinate on our goals, we get frustrated over something small. It’s ok to slip up, as long as you get back up on your two feet. Don’t punish yourself for a mistake, don’t feel discouraged by a mistake and don’t feel guilty about a mistake. We’re all human. As long as you’re trying your best, you’ll go far, mistakes and all.
(Image: Volume Twenty Five)
In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on ~ Robert Frost
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.
People change. Time ticks on and life goes on, so people change. Sometimes they’re tested to new extremes. Sometimes old wounds are ripped open. And we all respond differently. People break, people fight, people forget, people grow. And we cannot expect others to respond the same way we would. We cannot tell others how to feel. Sometimes all we can do is listen and comfort. Other times all we can do is accept and move on. People change. We change. Try to make the best of it.
Although it’s tempting to tuck our negatives into a box underneath the bed, sometimes, in life, we have to venture into the darkroom. And that’s not because we should hold onto the past as a way to punish ourselves, torment ourselves, or hold ourselves back. But because our negatives have so much more to offer us than the negatives. We can confront the past. Move on. Learn a lesson. Switch perspectives. Instigate changes. Grant forgiveness. Enhance strength. And build a healthier, more positive life. Don’t be afraid of your negatives. Don’t get hung up on them either. Grow from your negatives. And turn them into positives.
Even though we often tend to relive it, we ultimately cannot change the past. And whilst punishing ourselves seems to fit what we think we deserve, we need to learn to forgive ourselves. Because without forgiveness, there’s no moving forward and then there’s no future. We should always forgive ourselves for our mistakes, but here are a few times when we definitely should:
- When we let other people down – sometimes we have to do what’s best for us. And sometimes that’s borne out of things beyond our control. We cannot always please everyone and satisfy our own passions and dreams at the same time. At the end of the day, we have one life and we have to live it.
- When we trust the wrong person – we cannot see the inner workings of another person. So we cannot expect ourselves to know another’s intentions or predict another’s actions. Trust might be hard to hand out again next time, but don’t give up on it, because relationships are beautiful. They mean you’re living and not hiding.
- When we think we should be perfect – we set high expectations of ourselves, even if they’ve been created by somebody else. We all have limitations that we either need to accept or overcome. Don’t be so harsh on yourself. It’s ok to mess up. That’s how we get better.
- When we gave up on something – we all have times when we give up on something for a particular reason, whether temporary or permanent. And later on, we might come to regret that. But it’s never too late to start on an old or a new ambition. Learn a lesson from the last experience and push past that hurdle this time.
There is no sense in punishing your future for the mistakes of your past. Forgive yourself, grow from it, and then let it go.
What do you need to get better at forgiving yourself for?