“Guilt is a gift we give ourselves and so is forgiveness.”
Guilt is a natural process that allows us to reevaluate our thoughts and actions in order to stabilize and act in a manner in keeping with our internalized principles. This feeling of remorse allows us to reconnect with ourselves and refocus our actions on our true self. This may sound wonderful, yet the experience is quite painful. This guilt is designed to be a short term stimulus for action and stabilization. It is not designed for long term torture.
You may have said or heard “I wish she/he would stop making me feel guilty.” How does this happen? How does someone “make” you feel anything? The answer is: they don’t, you do it to yourself. People only give us an opportunity to feel something. How we feel is determined by our interpretation of the event and our desires regarding the outcome. You give this gift of guilt to your self.
Continually “beating yourself up” for some action is not cost effective without learning from the action and taking steps to change how your respond the next time the situation arises. Just how are you improving by continually injuring yourself? Do you desire to be loved and accepted?
Forgiveness is the path to this love and peace that you are seeking. Forgiveness of yourself involves an action that puts your life back on course, back to your personal principles, back to your sense of connection with yourself. You may want forgiveness from others and if they wish to give you that gift, it would be a beautiful thing. If they choose to withhold the gift, then you must forgive yourself and move forward.
We learn from the challenges life provides us and our responses to those challenges. Heal the pain of past injuries to others and yourself by learning from the experience and changing your life for the better. Only when you demonstrate this love of self, will you be able to accept love from others. Your peace is in your hands, act now. Give yourself forgiveness and share this forgiveness with others.