What to Do When You Mess Up ~ Can You Be Forgiven?
The other day I messed up.
I mean the really BIG kind of screw up. That kind of something you wish you could take back with all of your might.
I'll spare you the cringe worthy details, but let's just say, this was definitely in my top ten.
Surely you can relate? Most of us have made fools of ourselves, and consequently experience embarrassment and deep shame.
Well, my screw up wasn't in-alignment with who I think I am and who I want to be--a conscious, respectful and loving person. I acted in such a way that it was at such odds with this vision that I began to spin in a deep despair.
"How could I have these horrible characteristics of: indigence, privilege, righteousness, vindictiveness, entitlement, in-maturity, and belligerence?"
While I can normally hold the gray in most situations, this one made me feel like a monster. A true monster.
I thought it was unforgivable and that I didn't deserve forgiveness.
Then a wise friend asked me, "What would you tell your client if they were dealing with this same situation?"
"Thanks for asking. I would tell them two things. One, it sounds like you're really beating yourself up. And, two, that kind of behavior doesn't happen in a vacuum. This isn't your normal characteristic, so shall we try to see what those 'characteristics' were trying to tell you?"
That question got me thinking. At first I wasn't ready to not feel the remorse, embarrassment, and shame.
So, I let myself feel that for a day or so. The remorse then went too far to one side, so I prayed.
"Dear Spirit, please help me. I'm in a dark place. I need to know what to do to make this right. I hurt someone I love. I acted in such a way that didn't feel like me and I know it was not OK. Please just help me and take care of this."
Then I put my hands on my belly as if to give myself a hug and to send some self Reiki.
That's when I heard a soft inner voice.
"What? I can't forgive yet and that person certainly can't either."
"Forgive. And you may ask the Angel of Mercy to help you."
At this point I was so emotionally hungover and tired that I just cried out.
"God, if it's of the best and highest good please send the Angel of Mercy and the Angel of Relationships [I just through that one in there too] please, please, please do what you need to do to correct this situation. To firstly send healing to the person I may have harmed emotionally and then to help me heal and to know what to do to clear any karma."
That's when I felt warm, sweeping energy around my body. I fell asleep.
Feeling slightly better the next morning I prayed again. And I listened.
That's when I heard to write a heartfelt letter.
So I did.
It was extremely cathartic. I apologized. But I also felt more sympathy for why I acted the way I did.
Have I fully forgiven myself yet?
No. But I can now see I was hard on myself and Spirit and the Angels are showing me that all of those who are truly remorseful and want to do better next time receive spiritual grace.
Over the years I've seen many clients who indeed "messed up;" yet, had penance. Nonetheless, they kept self flagellating and resisted self-forgiveness and thereby grace.
I'm certainly still struggling with self-forgiveness.
Is it a belief we don't deserve forgiveness? My gut's saying it's something more. But what?
Well after this experience I realized how brutal we can be to ourselves. Yes, we mess up. And sometimes it is bad. But what Spirit and the Angel of Mercy tough me is that when we forgive, either another or ourselves we don't condone our behavior. On the contrary, true forgiveness only happens after we have true remorse in our hearts and then give it to God for healing and transformation. They even told me we can ask them to help spiritually heal any parties who may have been harmed by our behaviors. They want us to forgive, because it helps us raise our vibration to be closer to God and Heaven on earth.
So fellow awakening souls, if I learned anything through this terribly embarrassing experience, let's at least try to forgive ourselves and be closer to grace and Spirit. From there we can do more good again.
It can be difficult and we may not always be ready or go in and out of self-forgiveness, but maybe we can start with being open to the idea.
What do you think? Are you open to forgiveness? How are you working on self-forgiveness?