Allowing myself to make mistakes

mistakesA crucial part of self-love is allowing oneself to make mistakes. Of course words like fail and mistakes and wrong are always relative and subjective. But I am talking about giving yourself the freedom to make the wrong choices and trusting yourself enough to adjust and compensate and grow from the experience.

As a survivor and thriver of childhood sexual abuse, I have spent all my life so far demanding perfection from myself and others. I have agonised over decisions, wanting to do the perfect thing at the perfect time for the perfect reasons. My world was so wrong that I had to be right in every way. Subconsciously I must have believed that my very survival depended on perfection and flawlessness. I took every criticism, every mistake and weakness as a direct personal reflection of my very being. No doubt this was a result of a very undeveloped sense of self as a result of being sexually abuse by my own father with no validation from my mother.

But things have changed now; I allow myself to make mistakes, do the wrong thing, say and think the wrong thing. I allow myself to make the wrong decisions and choices, in the full confidence that I will be able to work it out eventually. I trust in myself enough to know that it will be ok, that I have all the  inner resources in my personal tool kit to shape the circumstances in the way that I need them to be for me.

This weekend I went out with friends and I smoked, had a glass of champagne, let my hair down, danced and it was liberating. These are things that would make me instantly feel bad about myself. I am also moving across the world and uprooting my son from a good school and a comfortable environment. It’s going to be hard and things may not work out as I planned but …you know what…that’s ok too. I will be fine and my son will be fine. My son has my unconditional love and care and I am following my heart.

Life is messy, imperfect and there are so many grey areas but I know that I have been my own worst enemy; mentally tearing myself down at every opportunity. I tell my harsh critic to leave now, she doesn’t serve me anymore. I am in control now and the danger has passed. It’s time for self-love and self-belief and self-care after over thirty years of self-bashing, self-denigration and fear of everything.




10 thoughts on “Allowing myself to make mistakes

  1. This is such a wonderful post that reveals a great deal of maturity in you. Learning to allow myself to make mistakes and to transcend the need to be “right” and to avoid “mistakes” or “failures” has also been my lifelong lesson as I am also a perfectionist like you. You did remind me of something that I didn’t think of, that it was perhaps due to the need to fill a certain void or “defect” in our character that we have strived so much to be perfect. I am very happy for your personal growth and I’m experiencing a similar growth myself. Onwards and upwards! And best of luck in your move!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There is so much strength and power here. Oddly, there is strength in allowing oneself acceptance for the humanness one cannot escape, strength even in weakness when life plow’s you over, yet you get up and work at it again.
    I beat myself up mercilessly over any mistake no matter how small. It would devastate me. Feeling so badly about myself, so unloved, that even minor things haunted my view of myself for days, weeks, months or years. I can tell you all of my negative aspects, mistakes, etc…but ask me about the positives and I become mute and tongue tied.
    But …no longer! It is possible to break free of the chains in childhood that so called families thrust upon us to silence us for their own anonymity and false good name. There is power and strength in the truth and you are a beacon!

    Liked by 1 person

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