[author title=”Laura Muth” author_id=”Laura Muth”]
Forgiveness is a decision by which a person ceases to blame or resent someone by letting go of lasting feelings of bitterness or anger. The act of forgiving both yourself and others can often be challenging. The majority of us need time to process the pain we have felt and therefore postpone forgiveness. However, holding on to this negativity and bitterness will only affect your life and bring you unhappiness.
[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h2″ looks_like=”h3″ accent=”true”] Self-forgiveness [/custom_headline]
Part of recovery involves forgiving yourself; something that is often much harder than forgiving others.
With eating disorders comes a lot of self-loathing, self-critique and self-blame. Letting go of this and forgiving ourselves is a vote to strengthen our well voice, to come out of battle with ourselves and to heal. If you can’t forgive yourself, you will be stuck in a cycle of blaming yourself and beating yourself up. Speaking to yourself with compassion is an essential step in eating disorder recovery.
Unfortunately, many people often blame the person suffering from an eating disorder for their illness and believe these disorders are a choice. This mentality of ‘just eat!’ is a huge problem surrounding eating disorders and may cause the sufferer to blame themselves for their problems.
Remember: It’s OK not to get it right all the time – that’s just a part of being human. Your eating disorder is not your fault.
[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h2″ looks_like=”h3″ accent=”true”] Forgiving others [/custom_headline]
[pullquote cite=”Nelson Mandela” type=” right”]As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.[/pullquote]Additionally, it is not uncommon for people suffering from eating disorders to have been abused, betrayed or disappointed by others at some point in their life. They may also hold strong feelings of resentment and anger towards various friends, family members or professionals.
Forgiveness is certainly not easy but by letting go, you will no longer need to turn to unhelpful behaviours as a coping mechanism to manage your inner pain. The decision to forgive someone that has wronged you does not mean you agree with what they have done, or that they shouldn’t take responsibility for their actions. It is more an act of self-care and a decision to be free of the effect their actions had on you.
When we begin to forgive others we begin to admit our own responsibility and with responsibility comes action for improvement. The decision to forgive somebody else is an act of living in the present moment; an act of letting go and moving on. This will help you to separate from your illness and shift your life in a positive direction.
When we withhold forgiveness we suffer.
Why continue to suffer?
Forgiving brings freedom.