“You have not fallen because you were weak. You fell because you were forced to be strong for so long.” – Unknown
(1) I give myself permission to unconditionally love myself no matter what I or others think of me.
(2) I give myself permission to completely forgive myself no matter what I might have done or did do.
(3) Because I love and forgive myself I give myself permission to heal.
What do these 3 simple affirmations mean? How can they help when I’m so depressed or sad?
Sometimes when you are full of sadness and self-loathing it is hard to find a starting point. I saw myself as being in a dark tunnel looking to find my way out, but not finding anything to grasp onto that might help me to get out and into the light again. I remember looking down that tunnel and only seeing a pinprick of light. That is what clinical depression feels like. Like clinging to the edge of a deep dark pit, afraid to move because if you do you will slide even deeper. Trying to not panic or become more depressed becomes paramount.
These 3 simple affirmations help you do just that. They keep you from panicking and they affirm some simple yet basic truths about ourselves. They are that rope you need to help you climb out of the pit you find yourself in.
And Jesus said, “Love your neighbors as yourselves.” But how can I when I’m filled with so much self-loathing.
It’s obvious that staying in this condition is not going to be acceptable to you. If you can at least admit that truth to yourself you have turned the corner.
Love is a very basic need and we all cannot happily live without. Love is needed to keep ourselves healthy and stable. Without it we have no anchor. And we have no peace. We become restless and maybe, if that restlessness becomes too severe, we see ourselves as lost, maybe hopeless even. And then the cycle of self-loathing builds on itself in a never-ending cycle. We are built to love. To live without love is like cutting ourselves and doing nothing about it. Eventually we will bleed to death.
No….to be healthy we must have love.
Forgiveness is important because it is obvious that with out it we let negative emotions like hatred, or self-pity and pride, selfishness and self-loathing among other harmful emotions take over. Forgiving others is the only way we can free ourselves from the harmful actions of ourselves or another individual. By forgiving, you are making peace with those negative emotions or thoughts. Making peace will free you from them because then your every thought will not upon them. Thus, they will dissipate and not come to mind to harm you. Forgiveness is a form of self-love and self protection necessary for your happiness and health.
Healing is a process. It takes time so it cannot be rushed. It is especially important not to force healing because you will actually impede it if you do. A mindfully aware steady pace is best and the above affirmations should be practiced several times daily because this will promote healthy habits. After all, a house cannot be built without a strong foundation.
Are you beginning to see how these simple affirmations can lead you out of the dark? I’m not a psychologists but this is a tried-and-true method that lead me out of that Dark Cave of Despair. They proved their worth to me and I’m sure that they can help you or loved-ones too. What will it cost you to try them? Answer: Absolutely nothing. Especially when you consider the alternative.
I know they work. You see I was a shut-in for 9 weeks and couldn’t go to work. In 1994, It was extremely painful to just be seen in public, fearing others could see right through me (one of several of my irrational fears at the time). This happened when I decided to throw away my crutches without a safety net and let others see me as I really was. A person with all my weird quirks that I had painfully tried to keep hidden, not knowing at the time that I had Asperger’s Syndrome. Many years of hidden fears and depression crippled me and I developed PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder). I could not allow this form of bondage to control me any longer.
Most of our Veterans and their families are familiar with PTSD as a wartime malady. But what about the wars fought in the minds of families and children trapped in abusive lives, forced to live for several years under threats, verbal abuse and physical beatings as in the case of a friend of mine. What about the Asperger’s Syndrome person who didn’t know what he or she has and, as a result lives with self-loathing and doubt for several years thinking somehow it is his or her fault, not knowing what the problem was. Everyone wondering who he or she comes in contact with, “What’s wrong with that person?”
Example: (Remembering my grandmother asking me, “What is wrong with you?”, because I seemed to lack the drive to succeed even though I was maintaining employment. And me saying, “I really don’t know!” A friend of my mom’s and her husband ridiculing me at my grandmother’s funeral (grave side service) for causing the death of my grandmother through worry, my grandmother’s sister also blaming me for her death with all having no idea that I had Asperger’s Syndrome including myself.)
No…. there are many kinds of wars that are being fought across this world of ours that have nothing to do with the military. Wars just as terrible as the wars our vets have seen. More than just the military vets coming back from foreign wars have PTSD. Many, many more. I would even go as far as saying there are more “HEROS” than we know. And I salute all of you. May God grant you peace and many blessings for all that you were forced to endure.
I want be clear on this point. That what I have discussed, in no way overwrites the need for careful and proper clinical therapeutic mental health care practices. Those 3 affirmations helped me to dig myself out of a rut. As a matter of fact, I cannot take credit for those affirmations. It was the most important advice I received from my licensed therapist back in 1994, because it gave me hope. And that’s a lot when you find yourself with none. There finally was a way out of that pit.
(More on PTSD to come)