“Forgive others, not because they deserve forgiveness but because you deserve peace.”
- Jonathan Lockwood Hue
Hoarding a grudge or resentment will squeeze the life out of you if you allow it. Revenge seems sweet as you savor thoughts of those who harmed you being miserable and you being around to witness their misery. But if your pattern is to always hold your negative past close, less joy and satisfaction will be experienced in your present and future. When you hold grudges and resent, it is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to get sick,” said Andrea Buttimer. That poison remains in your system bringing psychological and physical problems from stress and deep depression. How can you get the poison or revenge and resentment out of your system to heal your body, mind, and spirit? Marianne Williamson says, “We do not heal the past by dwelling there; we heal the past by living fully in the present.” Awareness, acceptance, and self compassion along with forgiveness will help you live more fully.
Awareness of your emotional state is critical because you might not consciously recognize that you are carrying judgment. It simmers below the surface, coloring everything and everyone with whom you interact. These judgments add up and weigh you down. You may be quick to anger, feel tired or stressed, and not understand why. Comments to others may become nasty and your patience may fade. All this is due to your attempt to punish someone by not forgiving. But you are really punishing yourself. It takes practice to train your mind to learn to let go of what is not important, so you can make room for things that really matter.
Acceptance of rejection allows your mind to become receptive to positive thoughts and ideas. As you learn to accept and make peace with the way things are in the moment, you step out of your own way stepping into your path to grow. The more often you practice acceptance, the more you will see that each moment has a purpose, lesson, and reason for unfolding the way it does. Self-compassion helps you face and accept uncomfortable, painful feelings as part of living. Research shows that self-compassion supports your psychological well-being, interpersonal relationships, emotional intelligence, life satisfaction, and many other positive parts of your life. Self compassion also decreases stress, worry, depression, and more.
It helps you accept that you were harmed in some way and lets you release the need to remain a victim of the past. You can then release the poison from your system and live not in the past but the present. With self-compassion you are acknowledging that you cannot relive past events, nor can you change what happened. But you can learn from it, let it go, and embrace all possibilities.
Authentic forgiveness stems from a deep faith that you are enough, that love is abundant, and that even though you are hurt, you do not have to spend your emotional energy trying to get revenge or pay back. It is a form of surrender and release expanding your capacity to love, receive love, and get all you deserve. With forgiveness, you will also find mercy, justice, and the courage to see your own faults and not just those of others. Forgiveness helps you move away from the false messages of self judgment moving toward empowerment.
You can thrive finding peace and joy. Forgiveness becomes easier when you understand it does not mean forgetting, excusing the harm done, or making up with the one who caused harm. Those who harmed you do not need to ask for forgiveness to be forgiven. They may not even believe they need to be forgiven. But again, it is not about them but you. Do you still feel the remnants from the stings of all those rejections and the people who rejected you? What are you holding on to that you must let go? The road to releasing resentment and forgiving is a journey.
Your emotional memory is activated creating negative emotions which leads your brain to repeat over and over the same situation with different characters. That is why most people complain that life does not move on. It is important to bring self awareness to break the negative cycles through the act of acceptance, forgiveness, self compassion, and letting go of underlying beliefs and emotional blocks. You must replace your past painful vision with a new perspective and declutter your mind from what is destructive. The memory of the negative event will not be erased, but the
meaning will change.
“True forgiveness is when you can say, “Thank you for that experience.” Oprah Winfrey
Article Written By Gladys Agwai
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