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Setting yourself free

Do you struggle to let go of the past and things that have hurt you, or find that you hold grudges against others, and yourself?


When we are hurt by others, your ego constructs stories filled with pain, anger, and resentment. These narratives and the emotions they evoke can trap you in a cycle of negativity.


Similarly, when you make mistakes, your inner critic can become harsh and relentless, making it difficult to forgive yourself.

The Power in Forgiveness

Holding onto grudges and guilt affects every aspect of your life. The constant mental turmoil drains your energy, leaving you fatigued and depleted. It can trigger anxiety, stress, frustration, and self-doubt. This emotional burden can impact relationships, productivity, and overall quality of life.


Forgiveness is a powerful skill and a cornerstone of self mastery.


In a sense, forgiveness is another word for detachment; detachment from self, detachment from self-perception, detachment from the results you create. Part of the reason so many people struggle to forgive is because they don’t realise it is a form of detachment.


Forgiving Others


To forgive someone, you need to be able to detach from every element of that moment. If you have been hurt or wronged, give yourself permission to feel the pain, but do not let it control you. If you are not able to forgive and let go, pain begins to control you.


  • Acknowledge your feelings. It is important to validate your emotions without suppressing them. Give yourself space to grieve, cry, or express your anger (in a healthy way). Understand that these feelings are natural responses to being wronged and are part of the healing process.

  • Understand the source of the pain. Being hurt means that your values and your view of the world has been shaken or contradicted. Connecting to the root of the pain can help you address and process more effectively.

  • View the situation through an objective lens – try to focus on the facts rather than letting feelings cloud your judgement.

  • Grant yourself permission to heal. Forgiveness does not mean forgetting or condoning what has happened to you – rather it means freeing yourself from the emotional hold of the past. Self-compassion plays a crucial role here. Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding that you would offer a close friend.


Forgiving Yourself


People pleasing tendencies and negative self-talk can make you hang onto guilt every time you make a mistake. You are often your own harshest critic. Hanging onto this self-inflicted guilt will hold you back in life.


  • Accepting the situation is the first step towards moving on. Understand that mistakes are a part of being human, and failure and growth come hand-in-hand in life. Reflect on the impact of your actions and discern why you feel guilty or ashamed. You may find that there’s no good reason to, or that this is a deeper-rooted issue of holding yourself to values formed in childhood that no longer serve you. This is worth exploring.

  • Separate your actions from your identity. Just because you have screwed up, does not make you a screw-up. You must challenge your negative self-talk here. Use facts and objectivity to balance it out with compassionate thoughts and prevent an overthinking spiral.

  • Make amends if your actions have affected others. Apologising and taking responsibility not only is healthy for the other party but will allow you to heal internally. Identify what you can learn from the experience and how you can apply this knowledge in the future.

  • Engage with your detachment process. You can meditate, journal, exercise, or practice any hobbies that bring you joy. Self-forgiveness is an act of self-love. Detachment allows you to create a healthy distance from the negative emotions and thoughts tied to your past mistakes.


Forgiving others and yourself is an immensely powerful act that can transform your life. It releases the emotional burdens that weigh you down, fosters mental and physical well-being, and opens the door to personal growth and healthier relationships.

It is a process you must take in your internal world that will translate into countless benefits in your external world.

You can read more about the power of forgiveness and my personal journey through forgiving myself and others in Chapter 3 of my book, Stone Heart Light Heart - The Intelligence of Self Mastery.


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