Self-Forgiveness: A Deeper Dive

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I came across an excellent article on self-forgiveness as a critical component of healing guilt and shame.  I found it on Psychology Today’s blog.    It’s a bit of a lengthy read, but if you’re struggling with guilt, shame, and blame (or if you know someone who’s grappling with these) this article is well worth it.

The article talks about:

~The devastating effects of guilt, shame, and not forgiving yourself;

~An explanation of the difference between guilt and shame;

~Obstacles to self-forgiveness;

~Forgiving yourself when you’ve harmed others.

 

The article takes a closer look at four avenues of self-forgiveness:

~Self-understanding;

~Common humanity;

~Earning forgiveness;

~Asking for forgiveness from Source.

 

My takeaway from this article was the discussion on forgiving yourself when you’ve caused harm to another.  When people talk about forgiveness, usually it’s from the vantage point of having been harmed by someone.  This is the first article that I’ve found that openly discusses how to forgive  yourself when you’ve been the perpetrator of the harm.

What insights did you get from the article?  Let me know in the comments below.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,
Lauren

Self-Forgiveness: Why We Don’t

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I read an article in Psychology Today regarding self-forgiveness.  Point #2 stood out to me.
Sometimes we allow ourselves to be defined by something that happened to us.  If we forgive the others involved and forgive ourselves, and let it go…then who are we?
We no longer have that injustice to tell us who we are.  We no longer have our outrage or indignation to fuel us, to help us get out of bed in the morning.  We also don’t have it as an excuse of why we aren’t going for our dreams and why we have a life of ‘less than’.
Forgiving others and forgiving ourselves oftentimes requires redefining who we are.  This is best accomplished by not looking  backward to our past and the injustice, but rather facing forward and looking to the present and the future, and all the Goodness that awaits us there.
You can do it, I know you can!
Your Friend and Pep Pal,
Lauren

Self-Forgiveness: Why Forgiveness, Including Self-Forgiveness, is Important

 

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We all know forgiveness is important, but it’s so hard to do!  As a result, we don’t actively work on forgiving and letting go.  We don’t realize the terrible toll it’s taking on us and how it’s hampering our efforts of crafting a soul-prospering life.

Here’s a sampling of what you can look forward to if you have trouble forgiving, whether it’s forgiving others or yourself:

Impatience and frustration

Fits of anger

Difficulty getting along with others

Rigid personality

Being judgmental

Perfectionism

Blame, guilt, shame

Sadness or being in a ‘blue funk’

Depression

Negative thinking

Living a life of ‘less than’

Envy

Fixated on the past

Fatigue and lethargy

Stress

Cold-hearted

 

A sampling of the benefits of forgiving yourself and others:

Peace of mind, body, and spirit

Optimism

Forward looking

Feelings of connectedness

Willingness to give the benefit of the doubt

No longer a prisoner of guilt, shame, and blame

Energetic

Resiliency and perseverance

Freedom

Creative

Generous

 

Scary, huh?  We’ll talk more about this tomorrow, including how you can move forward on this.

Thanks for reading and following my blog.  If you aren’t receiving these daily messages in your email then please sign up!  You’ll find the ‘subscribe’ button on the upper portion of the left hand column.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Self-Forgiveness: 16 Inspiring Quotes to Help You Forgive

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After last week’s posts about trust and the work we did in discovering how much–or how little–we trust the Universe, our Vision, and ourselves, we may have discovered that our trust levels are lower than what we thought. This can lead to disappointment and discouragement.

The antidote is forgiveness, particularly self-forgiveness. This will be our topic for the week. Below are 16 wise quotes that can get us started on our journey this week.

Enjoy!

 

The more you know yourself, the more you forgive yourself. ~Confucius

 

Do as the heavens have done, forget your evil. And, with them, forgive yourself. ~William Shakespeare

 

You cannot travel back in time to fix your mistakes, but you can learn from them and forgive yourself for not knowing better. ~Leon Brown

 

To forgive is indeed the best form of self-interest since anger, resentment, and revenge are corrosive of that ‘summum bonum’, the greatest good. ~~Bishop Desmond Tutu

 

Forgiving does not erase the bitter past. A healed memory is not a deleted memory. Instead, forgiving what we cannot forget creates a new way to remember.   We change the memory of our past into a hope for our future. ~Lewis B. Smedes

 

When you forgive, you in no way change the past–but you sure do change the future.   ~Bernard Meltzer

 

Forgiveness is rediscovering the shining path of peace that at first you thought others took away when they betrayed you. ~Dodinski

 

Although you should not erase your responsibility for the past, when you make the past your jailer, you destroy your future. It is such a great moment of liberation when you learn to forgive yourself, let the burden go, and walk out into a new path of promise and possibility.   ~John O’Donahue

 

Forgive yourself for what you think you’ve done or not done. At every moment, you had your reasons for all of your actions and decisions.   You’ve always done the best that you could do. Forgive yourself.   ~Doreen Virtue

 

I, who have never willfully pained another, have no right to pain myself. ~Marcus Aurelius

 

I found in my research that the biggest reason people aren’t more self-compassionate is that they are afraid they’ll become self-indulgent. The believe self-criticism is what keeps them in line.   Most people have gotten it wrong because our culture says being hard on yourself is the way to be. ~Dr. Kristin Neff

 

We read that we ought to forgive our enemies; but we do not read that we ought to forgive our friends. ~Sir Francis Bacon

 

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. ~Mahatma Gandhi

 

Most of us can forgive and forget; we just don’t want the other person to forge that we forgave them! ~Ivern Ball

 

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.   ~Catherine Ponder

 

He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. ~Dr. Martin Luther King

 

Which quotes rang true for you? Jot them down and keep them handy this week. Refer to them often to remind yourself that you’re doing your best. This will keep you on track with forgiving yourself.

Thank you for following this blog; I appreciate it. If you don’t receive these daily posts in your email, please sign up for them!   The ‘subscribe’ button is near the top of the page on the left hand column. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: How to Trust Yourself

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What if you discover you don’t really trust yourself, at least not when it comes to crafting your soul-prospering life. What do you do then?

No worries!

Just like many other skills and habits, you can learn to trust yourself.

It’s all about what you do, your follow-through.

For instance, if you’re self-trust is shaky because you aren’t sure you have what it takes–after all, your Vision is BIG (this is a very good thing, and it’s also a very good thing if your Vision is “small”; size does NOT matter in this case!). The solution is to break the steps you need to take into small bits and pieces then make a plan for regularly and consistently working on them.

Also, remember to reach out for help when you need it. That help can take the form of mentors, coaches, teachers, trusted friends and loved ones; it can be taking classes, attending workshops, and carving out regular time for practicing and refining your new skills.

What if you find you’re having trouble taking the first step, no matter how small it is? You make plans and promises, lay out schedules and deadlines, and may have a reward set up for the little successes along the way.   But yet, you don’t begin or you make a weak start and then either give up or become distracted with the this’s and that’s of Life.

Your self-trust is shaky because you break your promises to yourself. You can’t trust yourself to do what you say you’ll do and to see it through to the finish.

No worries–you aren’t doomed to a life of disappointment and of ‘less than’.

It’s all about smallness, slowness, and steadiness.

Learn to trust yourself by starting with something small, such as making your bed every morning or putting your dirty clothes into the hamper each day rather than strewing them across your bedroom. Choose ONE THING. And when deciding how and when you’ll do it, KEEP IT SIMPLE!!

The best reward you can give yourself is being mindful as you’re doing that task and feeling the pleasure and satisfaction of doing it, even if you aren’t doing it well or perfectly, just the fact that you’re doing it is justification enough to feel the pleasure and satisfaction.

Then, when the small simple task is complete, take a moment to feel the pleasure and satisfaction of having followed through to completion. Forget about the judgment of whether or not the result was done to perfection, because the whole point is that you chose a task and you completed it.

Following through on small simple tasks and enjoying the pleasure and satisfaction that you feel are the building blocks of strong self-trust.

Keep taking these steps and you’ll find your confidence and self-trust increasing and you can then take on a little larger project.

Small, slow, and steady wins every single time!

WooHoo!

You CAN do this, I KNOW you can!

Thanks for reading and for following this blog. If you aren’t receiving these posts every day in your email, then please sign up!   The ‘subscribe’ button is near the top of the page on the left hand column. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: Yourself

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Do you trust yourself, really trust yourself–especially when it comes to crafting a soul-prospering life, which is also living the life of your dreams?

Stay in a contemplative mood today thinking about the question I just asked. Certainly carry on with your responsibilities and obligations throughout the day, but keep this question simmering on the back burner of your mind.

Be observant of yourself today: what do you habitually think and say about yourself, are they the same things that a person with a high level of self-trust would say and think; when you are working on tasks, do you start them knowing you have what it takes to get the job done; as you work your way through the small and large projects of the day, do you do them with the attitude of “Yes I Can!”?

At the end of the day, take time to review what you’ve observed about yourself. Ask yourself “Do I trust myself, especially when it comes to crafting my soul-prospering life?” Be honest! You aren’t helping yourself by not being totally honest! And answer the question with Yes or No.

If you’ve answered No to the question, don’t worry. Tomorrow we’ll talk about steps you can take to bolster your self-trust.

It can be done and you can do it!

Thank you for following me on this blog. If you don’t get these posts in your daily email feed, then please sign up! You’ll find the ‘subscribe’ button at the top of the left hand column. Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: How to Trust Your Vision

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After reading yesterday’s post, what if you realize you don’t really trust your Vision? What if it feels too big for you to handle?   Perhaps you think that it’s some sort of Cosmic Joke that you have this Vision.

Is there anything you can do about this?

Yes! Absolutely!

Think back over the times in your life when you “just knew” something–a gut instinct, your intuition–and you flowed it and it turned out to be true. Remember how it felt–what did the “voice” “sound” like? Where in your body did you “hear” it?

What did it feel like–a tingling, a buzzing? Where did you feel it–in your chest, your stomach area, or somewhere else?

Is there an aroma or a taste or a touch sensation to go with it?

Is there an emotional feeling as well for instance if you’re fretting about something and suddenly you feel tired and you’re too exhausted to worry anymore…perhaps that’s your intuition or your gut telling you to stop agonizing because everything is okay and will work out just fine.

Also take note of the thoughts you’re thinking. Whose voice are they in? Don’t be surprised if they’re in the tone of a teacher or coach who was always so judgmental of you.

Write down the thoughts then put your Investigator’s Hat again and ask yourself if the thoughts are based on facts or not. If you find they’re based on what someone has told you, was that person speaking from a position of fact based upon proven expertise or was it based upon their opinions or feelings or the bad mood they happened to be in that day?

Pick apart your habitual thoughts about your trust in your Vision so that you can remake them into thoughts that support, encourage, and help you achieve your Vision and craft your soul-prospering life!

You can do it!

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Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: Your Vision

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You must trust your Vision, that which the Still Small Voice counsels you about and that which your heart and soul are urging you to do. It is your Mission and your Destiny to do this.

Stop and take a moment to think about this question: Why do I have this Vision?

If you think the Universe is hostile, then you may answer the question with something such as you think it’s the Universe’s way of getting a laugh or that somebody needs to be punished and the Universe has decided it’s you.

If you think the Universe is friendly, then you may answer the question with something such as: you were given the Vision because with your unique gifts, talents, and abilities, you are the one best suited, in fact the only one, to bring this particular facet of Goodness into the world. You may think that although it’s a big job, you and the Universe are in partnership and together you’ll get ‘er done!

You can see how your beliefs about the Universe and what It thinks of you can have a deep and profound affect on your life. If you haven’t already started delving into your thoughts and feelings to get to the core presumptions about the Universe, as you were urged to do in yesterday’s post, please do so now! This is important stuff!

Take time today to think about the question ‘why do I have this Vision’ and listen and feel carefully to your answer. Tomorrow we’ll delve a little deeper into this so remember to check back!

Thank you for regularly following my blog. Let me know if there are other topics you’d like me to cover or if there is one that you’d like me to go into more deeply. Thanks!

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Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: How to Trust the Universe

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What if, after yesterday’s post, you discovered that your basic assumption about the Universe is that it’s hostile toward you? What do you do about that? How can you change your decision and choose to believe the Universe is friendly, and that It’s even friendly to you?

If you can’t figure this out, does this mean you’re doomed to have ‘less than’ and that you’re condemned to live a lukewarm life that’s way below your potential?

NO!

You can live your soul-prospering life because YOU CAN retrain your thoughts and attitudes.

You must check in with yourself regularly and monitor what you’re thinking and feeling. When you catch yourself thinking thoughts that are not supportive, dig beneath the surface to find your particular spin on why and how the Universe is hostile to you, even if you think It’s just mildly hostile.

Take the time to do this!

When you find the underlying belief, ask yourself if it’s true. Put on your Investigator’s Cap and ask the ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘when’, ‘where’, ‘why’, and ‘how’ questions. Fully understand your belief/assumption so that you can poke holes in it, pull it apart, and prove to yourself that it isn’t true; that there is another way to think about the Universe and Its attitude toward you. Be a devil’s advocate against the idea of a “Hostile Universe”!

Tomorrow we’ll talk about Trusting Your Vision. Be sure to tune in! Thanks!

If you aren’t already following my blog, remember to sign up to receive these posts every day in your email. The sign-up button is at the top of the left hand column. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Trust: The Universe, Friendly or Hostile?

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The most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly Universe or a hostile Universe. ~Albert Einstein

 

 

The quotation above said by Albert Einstein sums up the basic assumption we make early on about what we can expect from Life, and this fundamental belief shapes and influences our whole life long.

Stop and think about this a moment. Take the time to really understand what you believe–what you’re unquestionably accepting as incontrovertible, unalterable fact and Truth about the Universe: is it friendly or is it hostile? Which one of these choices do you act upon each day?

If you’re operating on the assumption that the Universe is hostile, you may think things such as you’re always getting the short end of the stick; you have to be glad and thankful for crumbs and leftovers of Life; you aren’t lucky; you never get what you want and you always have to settle for second best if you’re lucky; others who seem to be less qualified and “less deserving” than you seem to get ahead while you’re mired in the muck… .

These thoughts then guide your actions: you wind up with anyone who’ll have you; you don’t go for the dream job instead you aim lower, much lower; you give up and give in relatively easily….

And then you become angry and bitter….

You can see how this assumption–that the Universe is hostile, especially to you–can drastically inhibit your attempts at crafting a soul-prospering life.

However,

If you believe the Universe is a friendly place–even to you–you’ll think things such as you have what it takes; your idea is a good one, even though others may not be as excited about it as you are; with honest effort over time you’ll figure things out and you’ll achieve your dreams; other people getting ahead doesn’t limit you or take anything away from you….

You can see how this assumption can give you a hopeful, optimistic attitude. This attitude will enhance your efforts as you craft your soul-prospering life.

When thinking about the question “…is the Universe friendly or is it hostile?” you may find that you believe that the Universe is both of these, depending upon the situation. Upon closer inspection, you’ll notice that you think one of these more often than the other.

So in your opinion, which is the Universe, friendly or hostile?

Let me know what you think in the comments below. Thanks!

 

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

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