Self-understanding is the path to self-forgiveness. And it is sacred work. Working hand in hand, they strengthen our connection to our True Self, which paves the way to peace, happiness, and feeling empowered, and becoming our Best Self.
We forgive our self of all ways we hurt our self, or others, because we are all innocent and loving beings at our core – we have just forgotten this. We only ever feel, react, or behave badly or in unhelpful ways from our unmet wounds, or from current stressors we cannot deal with.
We inherited this way of dealing with life from Humanity’s past. We are all influenced by left-over attitudes and behaviors from past generations that were based in fear, blame, projection, and protectionism, causing us to feel, react, and behave in hurtful, unhelpful, and unloving ways.
Humanity is at the pinnacle of its evolution,
and we are primed to address, and overcome, our injured selves.
In Parts 1 and 2 I discuss in depth why we act in ways that hurt our self – and others, and the importance of looking at what is driving us to act or react in unproductive or hurtful way. I explained that it is Unconscious Influences we inadvertently anchored into our being that act upon us without our consent, and that must be addressed.
In this Part 3, I will focus on Self-understanding and Self-reflection, which together allow for Self-forgiveness. This lays the ground work to connect the dots to the associated Unconscious Influences that are causing us to feel, react, and act in unhelpful and harmful ways – so that we can be free of their influence.
Unconscious Influences will have been affecting us – one way or another – whether we are aware of it or not: they act upon us without our conscious consent.
And with all the stress and uncertainly we are living with these days, our Unconscious Influences may surface more than usual. Whenever they do, we either hurt our self, others, or both – as negative reactions and behaviors affect all involved.
We hurt our self when we turn our fears, hurts, insecurities, and disappointments back onto our self. We may be overly-sensitive when disappointed by others and get hurt feelings. We may be tentative and afraid to try things. We may suffer from angst, apathy, insecurity, guilt, shame, or be overly-passive and not stand up for our self. We may become dysfunctional, or even an addict. As these all cause further internal angst and pain, we continue to think, act, and react in disempowering ways, and the cycle continues.
We hurt others when we project our Unconscious Influences onto those around us. We may lash out in anger, blame them for our unhappiness, or are judgmental, critical, demanding, bullying, controlling, uncooperative, abusive – or any other harmful or disempowering way that may hurt or stress them. This causes conflict in our life and disharmony our relationships.
It is the denial of our Unconscious Influences – these shadow parts of our self that keep us in emotional bondage, take away our current peace of mind, and cause us to continue to feel certain ways, or act in ways that hurt or disempower our self, others, and cause conflict around us.
This blog article is based on concepts in my 2 books, and as it has been updated,
it will be included in Book 2 of my series coming this Fall
“Your Journey to Peace …” About here and
“Why We Are the Way We Are” (Book 1) About here
(Both available in Print and E-book)
“Overcoming Our Unconscious Influences …” (Book 2 – out this Fall) About here
(Cover images below)
We allow for self-forgiveness:
1)When we acknowledge that we only hurt or disempowered our self, or others, or acted badly in any way because of past wounds, or current stressors
2)By Self-reflecting on why we felt bad or acted or reacted badly or in any disempowering way..
3) Connect the dots between our feelings, reactions, or behavior – to a past wound, or a current stressor.
4)Release the associated emotions surrounding the original wound, or work through how we are dealing with current frustrations or stressors.
Understanding that we only ever feel bad or act badly because of being misaligned from the love of our True Self allows us to look at our feelings, attitudes, what we have done, or not done – for release – NOT for self-condemnation. Peace and feelings of well-being are the goals of self-forgiveness. Adding more guilt is not.
During this process of acknowledgement and self-reflection,
we must remember to not get stuck in the old story of how we were being.
In this post, I focus on self-understanding: on acknowledgement and self-reflection. These are meant to lighten us. This inner work is not done to take on anything else heavy. We no longer deny, but we do not allow our self to get stuck in the muck of it all.
We have to honestly acknowledge how we felt, reacted, behaved, what we have said, or have or have not done in the past that is causing us to be sad, unhappy, lethargic, apathetic, or dysfunctional in the present, or that continue to cause conflict or rifts with others.
We forgive ourselves for undermining becoming our Best Self by
- Acknowledging and addressing the how’s and wherefores of the attitudes and/or actions that kept us in dysfunctional patterns.
- Taking time to honestly look at the why’s allows our true thoughts and feelings on the subject to surface.
- Journaling allows our feelings and thoughts to flow through us onto paper. It helps us connect to our innocent self that only acted out of fear, of further wounds, or from current stressors.
Here are some questions we can ask our self.
- Was I needy?
- Was I stressed?
- Did I have unrealistic expectations?
- Did I not communicate properly, or effectively?
- Did I not keep my word, or continuously disappoint?
- Was I lazy?
- Did I take on too much and then became apathetic?
- Did I become defensive?
- Did I not make my self heard?
- Was I greedy?
- Was I unappreciative of a loved one?
As we ask our self these questions, we must always remember our innocence. That how we felt or how we acted or reacted was because Unconscious Influences were running our life.
Forgiving our self for hurting others, especially our loved ones, brings up many emotions and we will have to effectively deal with the guilt and shame if we want to overcome the effects.
The 1st steps to forgiving our self for hurting another is to:
- Acknowledge that we may have hurt another.
- How they felt, or how we hurt them.
- Try and understand why we did so.
- How we felt at the time.
- What were our motivations – if any.
- Ask our self the above questions if answers to do come to us easily.
- Make amends when appropriate and possible.
- Get help if there is any guilt or shame that is overwhelming: if we cannot find our way out of it alone.
If we have been the person of authority and acted in ways that hurt, belittled, undermined, or disempowered those under our charge, once we face what we have done, are remorseful, are getting the help we need, and are aiming to change the path we are on, we too can return to wholeness and allow for our Best Self to come forth.
Forgiving ourselves for hurting our children or a loved one might be one of our greatest challenges, however it must be done if we are to move forward in life free from unconscious influences and the attitudes and behaviors they engender that create further chaos or conflict in our life.
And by us moving past the shame and guilt of hurting others and finding a new and better normal, we demonstrate to others who may not be able to face their guilt and shame and/or move past their regrets.
It is the denial and keeping buried these shadow parts of our self that keep us in emotional bondage, take away our current peace of mind, and cause us to continue to act in ways that hurt and undermine our self, or others. So, our aim is to release dark shadows, not add more.
There Is Much to Help Us
Our purpose here is to connect more fully to love. Addressing the root causes to our denials, hurt feelings, or bad attitudes or behaviors is the 1st step to removing the blocks to love. Much universal help is available to guide and comfort us through it all – and there are many choices on how to do this.
Whenever we do any internal or self-examination work, it is always advised to invite in your Best Self, higher-Self, Spirit, Holy Spirit, an Archangel, or any deity you are aligned with to join with you – whatever you are comfortable with.
In any stressful time – like these days, or when working on our self, like with self-examination practices, it is also advisable to ensure we are partaking in uplifting activities.
It a good time to start up, or increase, our meditation, yoga, or spiritual practice, spend extra time in nature, and ensure that we are feeding our soul with what creates peace, awe, or passion in us. Many also set up a special place, and/or create a bit of a ritual/temple to set the mood. Our energetic body remembers and as soon as we sit there, it gets ready.
Although it may not seen like it at first glance, looking at what is keeping us from the loving self that we all are at our core is sacred, sacred work.
Self-examination has been practiced throughout the ages by the Egyptians, the Eastern and the Abrahamic religions, and is now also a pivotal part of many of the current spiritual paths, like Byron Katie’s “The Work,” and the Sedona Method – to name a few.
We are love at our core,
and that it is simply the “removing of the blocks to love”
that brings us peace of mind and peace in our life. A Course in Miracles
(Next week, will be on Connecting the Dots. Once we make the connections between how we feel, react, and act and how we are experiencing life, we lay the groundwork for moving past what is keeping us unhappy, frustrated, in mediocrity, feeling disempowered, and our relationships is disharmony).
© Rosemary McCarthy, originally from 2016, updated September 18, 2020.
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here for About “Why We Are the Way We Are ” Book 1 of my new ‘Our Journeys to Peace’ Series.
here for Book 2, “Overcoming Our Unconscious Influences, such as Anger, Hurt Feeling, etc …” – due out this Fall. Cover Image Below.
here for Book 3, “Relationships in an Evolving World” – due out Winter 2020/21. Cover Image Below.
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