Forgiveness, the most beautiful thing that we deserve for ourselves, because withholding it, only hurts us. When we don’t forgive we are really allowing others to control us, this causes a lot of emotional chaos. Internalizing rotten and old feelings of anger chains us to the painful past, but when we let go, we can reclaim. Of course there is a process of forgiveness, one cannot simply “get over it” but the goal is to work through the situation, and let it pass through us. Many people have experienced a lot of abuse, (emotional, physical, mental, and sexual) and granted it’s hard to let -go, but if we don’t, we are controlled by our abuser (s), which is an outside source. When we get angry and stuck in the process of feeling, it’s hard to let -go of the pain and negativity. We feel absolutely awful… and we want them to suffer as much as we have. Its interesting how strongly we believe that revenge and control of those who harm us, will bring us peace. Somehow we think it’s our personal job and duty to change their minds, and convince them that they hurt us. When we engage in a fight we are trying to convince the other person they hurt us. Once you unload these feelings, you might feel like you can walk away from these feelings for a moment, but one trigger and it all comes back. At some point in time we have to decide, enough is enough, its time to stop the cycle, enough trying to change others perceptions and controlling their behavior. When you don’t forgive, it’s hard to feel your actual feelings, because you’re emotionally constipated with anger, sadness, and hurt. Once you clear it, you can see it. Let go! Enough of the victim [all your fault] or martyr [all my fault] thoughts. We all have the opportunity to change our feelings by changing our thoughts. Focus on the negative emotions for 2-minutes and then, out loud; force yourself to say, “I don’t like it. That’s okay. I CAN STAND IT ANYWAY.” Do this exercise 25-times in the morning, midday and before you go to bed. Changing how you think, will allow you to forgive. It’s so important that you do this, because you’re the one who has to pay the price (anxiety, depression, anger, etc.). If you don’t face the facts, you will self-soothe with self-harm: sexual acting out, alcohol, drugs, screen-time or other physically or emotional distractions to avoid the feelings and painful memories.
Its time to believe in yourself and capacity to overcome painful past experiences and find what you really want out of life: Forgiveness and letting-go. Think more about what you really want, relief and peace, think more and feel less. Keep in mind the point is NOT to remove the emotion, but to simultaneously think about the emotion while you re experiencing it. No more using feelings for justification. Exercise your right to choose and say to yourself this positive proclamation, “I forgive you, I forgive the situation, and I let it go. I have peace in my mind joy in my heart and happiness in my family and my life.” Feel 10% more than you think you can stand, hang on to that emotion for 2 minutes and then kick in the positive proclamation, out loud, until you can manage. Practice, so you can learn to release emotions, neither stuffing nor holding. Remember that forgiveness is a learning process, but it is something you can give. Take time to recognize your own errors and apologize. This might prompt the other person to apologize in return, but it also may not. Frankly, it’s irrelevant how they respond because it’s not your job to control how they react. Once you can forgive and stop trying to control the situation, you can let it go. Take time to examine your life, for things or people that you need to forgive. It can be intimidating, but forgiveness helps you to learn. Once you have forgiven, write it down in your Success Journal (a place to record your accomplishments). In the future, it will be a helpful tool to remember how you managed past situation to assist with future problems. Be sure to offer gratitude to your experiences and acknowledge the lessons you learned. Perhaps you learned empathy and compassion and you are now better able to help others. Or maybe you simply learned about yourself and what boundaries you need to set. The lessons are limitless, but can’t be uncovered until you begin the healing process of forgiveness.
Author of the book:
Navigating Your Mind: Achieving a Life of Peace, Joy and Happiness
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