I forgive myself, and if they remember I hope they forgive me too
A guided meditation about peace recently brought up all sorts of "those thoughts"- you know the ones.
Every mistake, awkward moment, hurt inflicted, guilt riddled memory you have just waiting to bubble up- they came at me in those 15 minutes.
In my past, a mantra- "I forgive myself, and if they remember I hope they forgive me too"- came to me in response to huge amounts of self-flagellation I had carried out of my earlier life. My self-analytical self can gnaw a moment to shreds but each particle still wounded until one day I breathed deeply, and forgave myself. I expressed genuine hope the injured party does, too, although they may not; that's outside my control.
The words resonated with me so deeply that a single memory often needed just a single forgiving to end the shame/embarrassment/ humiliation/guilt/remorse/disgrace/reproach I was feeling, but still I was carrying a lot of pain. Repeating this mantra used to be a frequent practice, several times a week. But over time those thoughts slowed and I'm rarely haunted by them now.
As it was, at that time I was living in a pure Survival Mode and would continue to for several more years. Even now I'm still in recovery but I believe this Self Forgiveness practice was one of my first steps out of that place.
If you carry past pain that is of your own making, try saying these words with as much meaning and kindness and intention as you can:
I forgive myself, and if they remember I hope they forgive me too.