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GTG: Self-Forgiveness

Forgiving oneself can be one of the most challenging acts of self-care, yet it is one of the most important steps in our personal growth and emotional healing. We often hold ourselves to high standards and expect perfection, leading us to harshly judge and criticize ourselves for mistakes or missteps. This can cause immense self-doubt, low self-esteem, and feelings of guilt and shame. It is important to understand that self-forgiveness is not about letting ourselves off the hook for wrongdoings or disregarding personal responsibility, but rather acknowledging our humanness and letting go of self-blame.

Why is self-forgiveness important?

Holding onto self-blame and not forgiving ourselves can lead to a negative cycle of negative self-talk and self-punishment. This can affect our mental and emotional well being, causing stress, anxiety, and depression. On the other hand, self-forgiveness helps us move on from past mistakes and frees us from the burden of self-condemnation. It allows us to focus on growth and progress, instead of dwelling on past errors.

How can we practice self-forgiveness?

  1. Acknowledge and accept your feelings: It is normal to feel guilty and ashamed after making a mistake, but it is important to acknowledge and accept these feelings instead of suppressing them. This can help us process and understand the root cause of our self-blame.

  2. Take responsibility: Taking responsibility for our actions is an important aspect of self-forgiveness. It shows that we acknowledge the impact of our actions and are willing to make amends where possible.

  3. Let go of perfectionism: Perfectionism is one of the main reasons we struggle with self-forgiveness. By letting go of the unrealistic expectation of perfection, we can accept our mistakes and forgive ourselves for being human.

  4. Practice self-compassion: Be kind and understanding towards yourself. Treat yourself with the same compassion and understanding that you would offer a friend.

  5. Write a letter to yourself: Writing a letter to yourself can be a powerful tool for self-forgiveness. In the letter, express your regret, apologize for your actions, and acknowledge the steps you are taking to make amends.

Remember, self-forgiveness is a crucial step in our emotional healing and personal growth. When we learn to forgive ourselves, we are taking the right steps to becoming Greater Than Good! #motivationforlife#forgiveness#selfcare


Check out this SEL Activity that helps students identify and become the great qualities that they see in others!

(c) 2022 Phillip D. Cortez


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