This morning I wrote a letter to money – a forgiveness letter. Because it turns out I’ve been blaming money for a lot of things that it has nothing to do with, like not feeling loved or worthy of love.

It might seem silly to read that, but almost all of us externalize blame in some way.

You might pin the tail on your parents, ex lover, horrible boss, chronic illness, or the economy. But it’s a tried-and-true habit almost all of us have to blame something else when you feel angry, disappointed, or powerless.

The problem is, when you habitually point the finger away from you, you rob yourself of the opportunity to heal what’s underneath you feeling bad in the first place.

Things like shame, resentment, fear, and hurt.

Because chances are you aren’t actually benefiting from blaming someone or something else for your life. You’re just temporarily benefiting from avoiding the pain of facing your fear and hurt face on.

But the grace that tactic gives you is fleeting. It’s not a real solution, but rather a patchwork stop-gap to a longer-standing problem that won’t go away unless you cope with it directly.

If you want to feel better – if you actually want to stop the cycle of feeling disempowered and disappointed – then you have to be brave enough to tackle your hurt.

You have to be willing to dig deeper than your gut reaction to lash out and be curious about why you want to in the first place.

It may not be fun.

Trust me, it wasn’t fun for me to realize this morning that I’ve pushed money away because I didn’t feel I deserved to be loved after being raped as a teen. But now that I see how I (mis)connected the dots between feeling ashamed and allowing in money, I can forgive myself and move on. I can see the raw, vulnerable hurt and fear behind my past choices, have compassion for my mistakes, and free myself to start over.

Because freedom – expansive, creative, limitless freedom – is your true nature.

You’re just clouding it over with misconceptions, gut reactions, and outdated beliefs.

So give yourself the gift of your own truth, so that you can free yourself from needing life or your mom/partner/health/boss/bank account to be a certain way before you can feel good.

You can feel good now. It’s who you already are and always have been. Have the courage to find it by writing a letter to the person or thing you blame today.

Be free. Be brave. Be YOU!