Image by juliejordanscott via Flickr I'm sure most of you have realized by now that I love quotes. Especially inspirational ones. So here is one that I would love to share with you because it is a topic I often work on with my clients:
“ On no account brood over your wrong-doing. Rolling in the muck is not the best way of getting clean. ”
Aldous Huxley (1894–1963)
While we can't rewind the clock and erase what we have done, we seem to beat ourselves up over and over again and replay in our heads how we could have done things differently. Don't get me wrong, I am all for learning from your past and making amends when needed, but how much time do we need to spend hating ourselves for things we have no control over?
One of the biggest obstacles to health and happiness that I see clients struggle with is a relentless beating of themselves and putting themselves down. Often this stems from past abuse they have experienced and they have merely picked up where the abusers left off and continued the vicious cycle to prove that their abusers are correct. I am here to take a stand and take that metaphoric whip away from you. You need to be gentle to yourself and learn to forgive yourself. If there are relationships that need to be repaired because of your actions, by all means reach out and make attempts to amend them. Sometimes people in our lives have past away and we don't have the opportunity to speak with them face to face. For this I recommend writing them a letter or perhaps visiting their burial site and reading it aloud or just going there and expressing yourself. For those of you who are able to connect with a lost love one in silence- no matter where you are- then use that time to express your feelings. After all, our bodies are merely vessels in this life and we are much more than just our bodies.
Perhaps you need to forgive yourself for doing things that have hurt you. Do you really think that beating yourself will make it any better or take the pain away? Make attempts to be gentle with yourself, love yourself and give yourself the respect that each of us in life deserves. Take the steps you need to make a better life for yourself because beating yourself will only keep you stuck or pull you back into the darkness.
Sending you lots of love,
Elizabeth Cappelletti, MA, LMFT