So you’ve done something wrong. You’ve hurt someone else or yourself, and now you feel angry, guilty, sad, or ashamed. If someone else had wronged you, you’d want an apology, and then you’d decide whether or not to forgive them. But when it’s you who’s done wrong, the steps are less clear. Maybe you don’t believe you deserve forgiveness, or you do but don’t know how to self-forgive. Either way, you feel awful. How do you forgive yourself even when it feels impossible?
The first thing I’d like you to do is to acknowledge and appreciate the way you feel right now. Acknowledge that not everyone is self-aware or empathetic enough to admit they’ve done something wrong. Appreciate that you’re the kind of person who can recognize your faults and mistakes and say, “I did this; I am responsible.” You’ve done something wrong, yes, but at your core, you are a good person.