PREVIOUS: Outgrowing, #7b
See ACRONYM page for abbrev.
RECOVERY from “Too Nice Syndrome” (TNS) cont.
TOOL 6b. FORGIVING Ourselves – as ADULTS
1. LETTING GO of old patterns AND
2. GIVING UP torturing ourselves
LETTING GO means ACCEPTING.….(7b)
GROWTH starts with accepting Al-Anon’s 3 As:
“I didn’t cause it, I can’t control it, I can’t cure it.”
We can then let go of self-recrimination for anything, because that is not taking responsibility (scroll down). We need to correct distorted thinking, & stop blaming or attacking ourselves for what may or may not be inadequacies & deficiencies
• Use these 18 Steps to process any Ts, Es or As you feel guilty about, as a way to take responsibility
• Write down what you’ve learned from any of the TOOLS (1-6) you’re in the process of using, & any actions you’ve taken to repair or make amends. Let this sink in. Appreciate yourself.
• Decide what if anything remains to be done – inside your own heart or out in the world – and then do it.
Let it sink in that you’re doing it, & appreciate yourself for this too.
• Consciously continue forgiving yourself when needed:
“I forgive myself today for ______ , knowing that even with self-defeating T.E.A.s I am a good person with the RIGHT to be valued & loved. I take responsibility for my life (but not for other adults) & do what I can to make things better.”
PRACTICE Self-Forgiveness. Give yourself the empathy you always craved as a child. (“Is self-love selfish?” 10 good Answers) (10 Scientific & Medical Reasons Why We Should Be Compassionate)
Every morning look in the mirror & say to yourself:
❤️ I love you. I am grateful for another day
❤️ I am accountable for my decisions & actions today
❤️ I forgive me for anything that was not forgiven last night
❤️ I love you. Have a great day!
And each evening, look & say:
💜 I love you. I am sorry for anything left undone today
💜 I am sorry for any fearful decisions & actions today
💜 I forgive myself, & am grateful for total forgiveness
💜 I accept & enjoy ALL my blessings. I love you. Sleep well. (MORE…..)
NOTE: Compassion is wired in from birth, because it’s good for us & for humanity. Both animals & humans have what Dr. Keltner at U of C Berkeley, coined as “compassionate instinct.” It’s a natural, automatic response that has ensured our survival.
• But as ACoAs we know it can be cruelly suppressed by family & community! OR used by sick adults to ‘take care of’ them so they didn’t have to be responsible for themselves.
Other suggestions for healing
Putting time & caring into each activity reinforces the determination to outgrow co-dep & re-connect with your Natural Compassion.
• Write a letter to your WIC listing all the things you’re ‘letting go‘ of on his/her behalf
• Build a visual bridge – from here to where you want to be
• Write a positive 3rd person story or poem as the narrator, about how the main character (you) his freeing themself of guilt & shame
• Create a tangible expression of old painful experiences AND of your fondest wishes, using :
– sand tray art, with suggested ideas for adults
– a collage, drawings or junk sculptures (Google images) to express emotions
• Make a memory bracelet or necklace with a colored bead or charm for every time you have already forgiven yourself, & add one when you do so from now on (w/ memory wire)
• Do something physical you enjoy – to release anger & hurt (run, bike, dance, t’ai chi, yoga, swim…..)
• Use Trauma Release work on unfinished business:
= Several methods – scroll down // About the Pain Body // Tension & Trauma Releasing Exercises // Dealing with Recent or Childhood Trauma
► The benefits of letting go & acceptance are worth the great struggle of having to outgrow our damage – by releasing the rage at ourselves & our abusers.
NEXT: Outgrowing, #8a