Forgiving Yourself: 5 Affirmations that Can Help You

Many times, the only person that can forgive you so you keep moving forward is yourself. Learn about the importance of forgiving yourself.
Forgiving Yourself: 5 Affirmations that Can Help You

Written by Okairy Zuñiga

Last update: 09 October, 2022

We often hear about how we need to forgive other people. They say that forgiving those who hurt us lets us be free. But how many times have you heard people talk about the need to forgive yourself?

Despite the fact that forgiving ourselves is more important than forgiving others, we don’t do it often enough. Have you ever thought about the number of things that you annoyed with yourself for? How many times have you held yourself accountable for your circumstances or problems?

5 affirmations that will help you forgive yourself

The damage we do to ourselves is usually greater than what others cause us. Because of this, in this article, we want to help you free yourself from this.

Forgiving yourself won’t be easy. It also isn’t something that you’ll do in a day. This is a process that you may not know how to handle; that’s why the best thing to do in these cases is to go to a specialist who will guide you to achieve it.

That being said, the following affirmations can be of help to you. Since they’re scientifically based on the conclusions of the recognized “father of happiness”: Dr. Frederic Luskin, expert in clinical and positive psychology, and director of “Forgiveness Projects” at Standford University.

1. Forgiving yourself and freeing yourself from doubt, guilt, and shame

These three emotions are the main causes of many of the problems we face, as explained in a study developed at the University of Antioquia. Forgiving ourselves for these is essential for moving forward.

Orange poppies in the middle of a lavender field.

However, apart from repeating the phrase above, you need to face these emotions. This is the hard part. It’s also the part that many people flee from. You need to stop and take a look at the situations that cause these emotions. Take a minute to recognize your inabilities.

Go through this process in an honest way. This will teach you more about yourself. It will also make you resistant to similar situations in the future. It’s even possible that you’ll find that what makes you feel doubt, guilt, and shame really isn’t that important after all.

2. Let go of the past to fully live in the future

Sometimes, all of the plans and goals we have are suffocated by the past. All of these things and people who hurt you can hold you back. They can keep you from going where you want if you don’t let them go.

There are times when one gets caught up in shortcomings or circumstances that depended on others. For example, there are those who don’t forgive themselves for not having been the right person for someone they loved. But you can’t be perfect, and the fact that the other person didn’t find in you what they were looking for doesn’t make you any worse.

Forgiving yourself means letting go of thinking about everything that you didn’t have. We usually believe that we can only forgive ourselves for things that hurt us. This isn’t true.

3. I can keep going despite my mistakes

For cultural reasons related to honor, professors at the University of Malaga believe that society teaches you to avoid mistakes and errors. That’s why, when you feel you did something wrong, you focus too much on it. You may even spend months or years analyzing what went wrong and why.

Forgiving yourself for these errors is important for moving forward with your life. You shouldn’t forget that we all make mistakes every day. This is OK. Mistakes are the true teachers in life.

A woman running her fingers through lavender in a field.

Keep in mind if everything had gone well from the beginning, you would quickly run out of things to learn. You wouldn’t be able to talk about the experiences and lessons learned from each mistake you made. It’s true that there are mistakes that cost you a lot. However, even these have something to teach you.

From now on, see each mistake as a lesson to learn. Forgive yourself when you think about it. Keep moving towards the next step in life.

Read more: 7 Mistakes that Make it Harder to Wake up in the Morning

4. I’m thankful for the good things that life gives me

If we asked you to make a list of people and things that make your life better, how many would there be? You’d probably realize that there are more than you thought. Forgiving yourself means learning to see and accept that you aren’t alone. Forgive yourself for the things you think are your fault. When you do, it lets you see that seeing the good isn’t that hard. With this phrase, you’re promising to focus your attention on positive things. This might sound difficult to do. However, it’s possible that you’ve spent too much time seeing things from the wrong point of view.

Forgiving yourself involves learning to see and accept that you’re not alone. So when you forgive yourself for those things you think are your fault, seeing the good is no longer so difficult.

5. Accept that you did what you could with what you had on hand

In some cases, we have to make decisions quickly. Later, we might see the whole situation or get other information. As a result, you find out that you made a wrong decision.

As a result of what you did, you may feel guilty. However, it’s better to change the feeling of guilt to one of responsibility. This is especially true if you acted with a limited amount of information.

When you take responsibility, you can forgive yourself. You can also work to make the situation better. If you only focus on remembering your errors or feeling guilty, you won’t change anything. l 9Remember, it’s better to be proactive than to spend all of your time complaining.

The only person who can forgive you is in the mirror

A mirror reflecting a woman standing in a lavender field, holding a boquet.
The 5 affirmations that will help you to forgive yourself must be kept in mind, and not only on an occasional basis.

You may find yourself in a situation where the other person is far away, unwilling to forgive or even no longer on this plane. So remember that you can’t continue your life fully if you don’t move forward today.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Jesús Canto Ortiz, Jesús San Martín García, Fabiola Perles Novas. (2014). La relación entre la cultura del honor y otras variables de carácter ideológico. Boletín de psicología, ISSN 0212-8179, Nº. 111, 2014, págs. 57-70.
  • Jiménez Botero, Yuly Andrea. (2018). Relación entre las emociones morales de vergüenza y culpa y el control de impulsos en población privada de la libertad en el municipio de Rionegro. Universidad de Antioquia. El Carmen de Viboral, Colombia.
  • Patiño-Prieto, J., Ortega Ferreira, S., & Giraldo Rubio, A. (2020). El perdón: un análisis desde el desarrollo social, emocional y ético en las Universidades. Virtu@lmente8(1).

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.