Life happens! We all do things we regret in life even though the extent differs. Throughout our lives we are faced with choices and decisions to make that shape us in to the people that we become and along the process we sometimes make good choices that make us proud when we reflect on it later on and sometimes we make decisions that we regret so much. This is inevitable but let’s be honest for a moment, do we constantly beat ourselves for the mistakes we made or do we take time to fully forgive ourselves and move on?

The concept of forgiveness is often associated with the relationship between people; however, forgiveness is also very much needed within oneself. Looking back on my life, I often struggled with myself, thinking if I had made better choices or taken different paths I would have avoided the failures and pain I had to endure but in reality it’s the accumulation of all kinds of experiences I had, that led me to the path I was supposed to be in and gave me invaluable lessons; and it was only when I was willing to accept everything, take the lessons and learn to forgive myself that I was able to make peace with myself and keep on going towards what’s waiting.

We often get so immersed and busy with our day to day lives and maintaining our relationship with others that we tend to ignore taking time to address our innermost needs, forgetting that even to build healthy relationships with others you need to have that good relationship with yourself first. In order to do that, you need to reflect, confront and accept everything in your past and then fully forgive yourself which could lead to total peace and cherishing of one’s self.

Self-forgiveness is essential even in our relationship with others. It’s pretty much known that forgiving someone that wronged you is for your own good as it releases you from negative emotions; however, before forgiving others you need to forgive yourself first. Say, someone that you trusted betrayed you in some way, before forgiving him or her you need to let go of the bitterness you feel with yourself for trusting completely and letting it happen so that you can let go and forgive that person fully. This applies even when asking for forgiveness to someone else; there was this time when I witnessed a cousin of mine fighting with his best friend and he said terrible things that hurt his best friend deeply, with time my cousin regretted the things he said and wanted to get his friend back but instead of talking and addressing the problem with his friend and asking for forgiveness;  he started acting as if nothing happened between them; going to his home and trying to reach out to him, which made his friend even more upset. What my cousin couldn’t do was to confront the problem with himself and forgive himself first so that he would be able to take responsibility for his actions and asking for forgiveness properly.

Learning to forgive yourself could take a while and yeah even a lifetime trying to continuously do it but having that deep and peaceful relationship with yourself makes it worthwhile and helps you to build sound relationship with others too


By Saron Tesfay


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