Self-forgiveness: How To Forgive And Rediscover Yourself

Self-forgiveness to self-discovery

It happens with everyone.

There always comes a time in life when everything you have striven for seems to go downhill. It does not matter at what age and in what manner you encounter failure, it always delivers a gut wrenching blow. Whether disaster strikes in the form of a failed exam or at a more high-stake level; like in the shape of a severed relationship, it is a testing experience to go through.  No matter what age you are, failure stings. Understanding the essence of it however can lessen the trauma quite a bit.

Failing and Falling

When talking about failure, it is inevitable that the concept of success comes up. Just like failure, success is also an abstract idea. The influence of both felt by any individual varies from person to person. One person’s failure may be another person’s epitome of success. A high achiever’s failure could be the very idea of success for someone of mediocre level.

But the fact remains, whether a high flier or a low glider, failure at some level is unavoidable. Unless you take no risks at all – and that is a failing by itself.

Just like failure, success is also an abstract idea. Click To Tweet

Winston Churchill, Britain’s wartime prime minister, described success as “moving from one failure to another without losing hope.”  What he meant by this is that failing to achieve a goal in itself is not the problem, how you react to the let-downs in your life and what you do from that point onward decides whether or not you are an actual loser.

Fruits of A Fall

Although it takes a very long time to regain some control over your life after one, the crisis itself is a chrysalis, from which you can emerge clutching valuable lessons about forgiveness, letting go and bravery in the face of unbeatable odds.

1. You will discover that failing once in a while has its benefits
Before staring failure in the face, you never realize how weak you are. Sometimes you spend your entire adult life making safe choices, taking far too much advice on every single aspect of your life and having no opinion of your own.

From picking up safe college majors, which your parents in their high hopes for you, figure to be the best one that would keep you financially safe, to settling for a secure, but mediocre married life in fear of the lonely future, you envisage would be your fate, you end up being far too dependent on other’s view of how you should be spending your life.

Before staring failure in the face, you never realize how weak you are. Click To Tweet

Being stripped bare of all your safety nets, and all your terrors coming to reality nullifies the noise and distraction from your life, helping you to finally figure out who you really are and what you actually want with your life.

The understanding can be slow and painful. Finding out that the path you have been traversing has been the wrong one all along is humbling to say the least. But along with humility comes the clarity you have been missing all your life and courage. Having been at rock bottom, you realize that you have nowhere to go but up.

2. You will learn how to let go
You will find that you have been notoriously bad at letting go of the past grievances. During those dark days of inner contemplation, you will end up examining your cache of residual feelings and find it to be teeming with petty wrongs, both real and imagined.

You’ll be surprised and a little appalled by the fact that you are still holding out on your younger siblings because they received more attention than you did.

You will realize that this was the reason for your cool relations with your siblings and not some imaginary haughtiness on their part. You might even figure out that you love to play the victim and never own the responsibility of your personal shortcomings, and in failing to do so, you end up missing many chances to improve yourself.

Armed with this small wisdom, you will finally learn to let go of the burdens that you had inadvertently been carrying around, exhausting yourself needlessly. You will learn never to let them accumulate again. You will find it to be the best of feeling; being light and free.

Because you have learned the lesson of forgiving others the hard way; you can be lenient with yourself. Click To Tweet
our greatest glory is not in never failing

3. You will practice self-forgiveness
Experiencing the painful discovery of your uncensored faults and weaknesses can be overwhelming. You can’t help but agonize over what you could have done differently to prevent such catastrophic turns of events. Questioning every life decision; major and small you have made, you will come to the conclusion that you are the guilty party. You may find that you have wasted your life, performing only at a fraction of your full potential.

But now this insight will not send you tail-spinning into an abyss of depression as it would have previously. Because you have learned the lesson of forgiving others the hard way; you can be lenient with yourself. So you use that point in life as an opportunity and learn to forgive yourself.

4. You begin to push yourself to function outside your comfort zone
While you figure out what to do next, you begin to give your surroundings a thorough appraisal for the first time. The same old town you have lived in all your life, the same routines, the same stagnant opportunities. You begin to recognize the fact that for far too long your comfort zone has not expanded beyond the limits of your home town. Slowly the realization will come that to truly succeed you will have to step outside your cocoon and spread your wings.

Final Words

So courtesy of failure, you reboot your life. You might find work that you actually flourish at and discovered a new set of colleagues and interests. A complete change will give you a fresh perspective of what constitutes as success and failure. You will dream up fresh dreams and work up a burning determination to achieve them.  You wind up in a much better place now.

Hereafter, if and when failure knocks on your doors again, you will welcome it as a friend.

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Author Bio: Ashley Albert is presently a marketing head in a leading online retail organization. She has been a guest contributor to Essay Mania in the past. She doubles as a motivational speaker in her free time.

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