Forgiving myself for all the times I've been the one to hurt.
Forgiveness is a dense subject – and it’s also quite simple.
I haven’t talked as much about it recently because I’ve been working through the process myself. Understanding it on a deeper level. Like sipping wine, each time you swish it around in your mouth, you get an even richer experience of the depth available in the flavor profile.
I’ve been humbled and wowed by what has poured forth for me to work through. The situations bringing about unavoidable awareness that I have been abusing myself in subtle ways, holding inward resentment for all of the times I have been the one to hurt someone. And thus, in pain, sharing that pain with people around me, rather than the joy I always wish to give.
All of that has been playing itself out in subtle actions and choices. Choices that lead me to have to wait another month for this. Another year for that. Not returning a phone call here, and feeling guilty for days later there. Causing brain fog and exhaustion that spiral out into loads of other things. It’s the simplest things. Like phone calls and emails, causing me to miss out on what I want. Causing me to act out of accordance with the highest version of myself. And all on my fault. I’ve been the one causing the chaos. No one else.
Over the last six months or so, I’ve engaged in a daily practice of gently writing letters, asking forgiveness of those I’ve hurt (not sending, but just in conversation with the Soul), sending prayers, and doing meditations to release the pain filled ties, transmuting them into grace filled containers of growth. Watching how, as I do, my external choices completely shift 180 without any conscious effort. Suddenly I’m able to show up as the person I always wanted to be. Returning phone calls on time. Truly being able to show up and connect with the people I care about. Dance together through this thing called life. Meeting deadlines with ease. Making food choices that feel delicious. And adventuring in ways that makes my heart expand bigger than it ever knew possible. Ultimately, being able to share more joy and more of myself with the world.
And while the work is by NO means complete, I feel renewed. Refreshed. And more vulnerable and tender than ever. Which, contrary to what I always believed would happen, has turned out to be the state which I also feel most alive. Most free.
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Admitting to ourselves all of the times when we have failed someone else is one of the most critical things we must do – daily, really. Our shortcomings shows us where our work is. Where we need to get better. Where we are meant to grow. There is no need to beat ourselves up for it. There is simply a need to consciously acknowledge it, and rather than hiding from it, pretending it didn’t happen, living in denial about it, and repeating it over and over again, make the commitment to use the experience learn, and to show up better, more humble, more aware and compassionate than ever.
When we fail someone else, when we pass on a hurt we’re experiencing inside somewhere, we’re also showing ourselves where we are still carrying a baton of pain that was handed to us at some point in time. We’re being shown all the places we’re hanging on to baggage we don’t need anymore. As the beautiful cycle of life works out, in forgiving ourselves for our shortcomings and mess ups, not only do we get to free ourselves from guilt and step into the world as more compassionate, patient, understanding human beings, but we get to drop an entire line of pain from the moment it began, generations ago. We’re doing preventative maintenance for all our relationships going forward. Whatever form they take!
It’s important work – dropping the batons of fear and hurt and pain that we’ve all been passing around – just because they were handed off to us.
And my prayer for you is that you cultivate the awareness within yourself daily to be able recognize this work when it arises. To see not personal attacks, but cries for help, for love, for understanding. The cry for permission to drop the pain and the struggle and return back to love, innocence, and understanding. The cry for help in rejoining the world of harmony. And that you have gone through your own process of cleansing so that you can meet these cries, not with your own fears, but with the ever present wellspring of nurturing love that lives inside of you.
Isn’t what we’re all really doing when we hurt those around us? Hoping they’ll see that we’re scared, and don’t know how to ask for help? That we’re overwhelmed, and can’t find ourselves, and need someone there to hold our hand as we do? It’s no different for those who put us on the receiving end of their fear. So let’s meet these cries with what they’re asking for. Within ourselves first, so that we can meet the ones around us with the same love.
We do this work so we can show up and have more fun together. Create deeper and more meaningful relationships with one another. Embark on adventures full of magic together. There is a point! And it’s a magical one. So I invite you to pause daily and clear out the spaces of pain, fog, dread, doubt, to set down the batons of pain, and dance freely in the joy of life around you. It’s more urgent than ever.
I was grateful to be reminded of this passage [PASTED BELOW] from The Unapologetic You today as I was reviewing all things Forgiveness for the Essentoily You crew. Piecing together such a beautiful exploration of all that I’ve learned and come across on the subject – stepping back and recognizing how all of the little seeds have blossomed into beautiful flowers of awakening.
I couldn’t not share. I hope it served your heart a bit of peace, and gave you a little something to reflect through over the next few days.
If you’d like to engage in a daily practice for self awareness and forgiveness but aren’t sure where to start, The Unapologetic You outlines the very process I’ve been using to write my letters. Grab a copy & make a commitment to yourself to dive in.
So grateful for you. For this life. For this gift of time and space to reflect. And for this opportunity to share.
If you’re interested in a deeper exploration of forgiveness and renewal of the body, mind and spirit using this work, hit reply and let’s chat about making that happen. I’d love to have you as a part of the 12-week immersion I lead <3
All the love and gratitude,
Trade a life of seeking to understand for a life of living what you already know.
Author | Sacred Space Holder | Speaker
Sarah Miller is author of The Unapologetic You, a sacred space holder, and a speaker. She is currently traveling the world speaking, writing, and holding workshops. To find out when she’ll be in a town near you, be sure to follow her on Instagram and Facebook.
To find out more about how to work with her one on one, click here.
To learn her pillars of living an unapologetic life of miracles, click here.
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