Forgiving Yourself: Five Reasons You Should

Forgiving yourself is hard to do.  This is part three of a series on forgiving yourself. forgiving yourself

Today I want to look at five reasons that forgiving yourself is so important.

1. Forgiving yourself can be a defining moment in your life.

So often not forgiving yourself is a form of self punishment. If God won’t punish you then you have to do it. But what if you took that energy and put it into something positive? Instead of beating yourself up, what if you used your failure as a turning point? Use your failure as the motivating factor you’ve needed to put your life on track.

2. Forgiving yourself adds value to the world.

Refusing to forgive yourself is incredibly self-centered. You think you are doing the world a favor by punishing yourself. But in reality you are only drawing more attention to yourself.  You are only adding to your past failure. If you regret your past then why do you want to add to the regret?

When you forgive yourself you change that. You turn the tide. Now, instead of taking something from the world you are adding back. You are making a contribution. The longer you wait the less contribution you can make.

3.  Forgiving yourself reclaims your story for good.

When you refuse to forgive yourself it’s like you embrace the past.  You choose to accept a bad snapshot in time as your eternal identity. In forgiving yourself you let go of the past and create a new future. You tell a new story…a better story.

4. Forgiving yourself can bring you close to God.

Grace is an amazing thing. You can keep yourself at a distance from grace and stay the same for the rest of your life. Or you can accept God’s grace and let it change you.  As a result you encounter the living God. How cool is that?

5. Forgiving yourself can be a transforming experience.

Everything I’ve listed here speaks of transformation. I’m reading Jerry Sitser’s book, A Grace Disguised.  It’s a book on loss and grace. He makes a powerful statement:

The experience of loss (read failure) doesn’t have to be the defining moment in our lives. Instead, the defining moment can be our response to the loss.  It is not what happens to us that matters so much as what happens in us. (from the front cover)

…your failure can actually lead to a life changing transformation.

What this means is that your failure can actually lead to a life changing transformation. Imagine your funeral. People reflect on your life and say, “Everything turned around after their big failure. That was their defining moment. It was like they became a new person.” Isn’t that what you want them to say? Do you want them to lament your life saying, “Their failure defined them. They never recovered. It’s so sad.” Is that the legacy you want to have?  It’s your choice. It’s up to you. By forgiving yourself you can turn the page and write a great story.

I have more to say about forgiving yourself. Be sure to subscribe to the blog so you don’t miss it! When you do I’ll send you my free e-book, “Forgiven…once and for all”.

Question: What are other reasons for forgiving yourself? Leave your comment below.

Learn more about how to forgive in my book, STUCK…how to mend and move on from broken relationships.