Forgiveness isn’t just a gift that we give people who have wronged us (and we hope you can forgive us for the website being down a couple weeks ago), forgiveness is also a gift that we give ourselves.
Why would we need to forgive ourselves? Many people who struggle with weight control or food choices have a tendency to be harder on themselves than they need to be when they make a less than ideal food choice or miss a workout.
We can do 50 things “right” but when we mess up in 1 area of our lives, which thing do we remember – the 50 right choices or the 1 wrong choice? Many of us remember the 1 wrong choice. And not only do we remember it, we dwell on it, stew over it, and sometimes let it trip us up.
Let’s say you’ve been faithfully Oxycising and eating clean foods and you’re seeing steady progress. You lose a pound or two a week, and people are starting to notice. Your clothes are fitting more loosely in the places you want them to, and you’re walking up stairs without having to pause for breath on the landing. That’s where you should be telling yourself, “Great job. Keep it up.”
Then maybe you have a big week filled with weight loss traps: a work trip with lots of meetings and dinners in restaurants, and a family party on the weekend. You’re tired and stressed because of work, and your sister-in-law has made that “Death by Chocolate” cake. Next time you get on the scale, you’ve gained back two pounds.
What do you do? Do you beat yourself up for making a very simple, very human mistake? Or do you forgive yourself and move on?
We forgive friends for rude comments, we forgive family members for insensitive actions, but we often find it very difficult to forgive ourselves. As important and life-affirming as it is to forgive someone, it’s equally important to be able to forgive yourself when you slip up. And you will slip up. We all do.
Give yourself permission to be free from the feelings of guilt and self-loathing. Beating yourself up time after time probably won’t help you get where you want to go. If you can practice forgiving yourself like you do other people, you may find your journey not only more pleasant, but more fruitful.