FIVE WAYS TO FORGIVE
By: Tania Staley
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” –Anonymous
Everyone gets hurt. Those who are close to us can hurt us more than anyone. We will all feel moments of betrayal or disappointment, but the way we choose to handle these situations is up to us. Forgiveness is an important component of living a happy and healthy life. Truly forgiving those who have hurt us allows us closure and has actually been proven to lower blood pressure and raise immunity letting us live a healthier life. Forgiveness isn’t always easy, though. Here are five ways to achieve it.
Feel Your Emotions and Then Let Them Go
To truly forgive, you have to allow yourself a moment to feel the pain that has been caused. Don’t let yourself bury it, and don’t let it close you off from your relationships. Identify the emotions you are feeling and try to come to an understanding of why you feel this way. Once you have done this, let them go. Harvesting bitterness and pain will only do harm. It can lead to destroyed relationships and health problems, including high blood pressure, illness, anxiety, and depression.
Be Honest and Open with the Person Who Hurt You
Along with being honest with yourself, you have to be honest with the person who hurt you. Not doing so can just lead to more pain. If the person doesn’t know they hurt you with their actions, they can’t know how to fix the problem. Forgiveness will also allow you the closure you need to either let go of your relationship with the person or strengthen it.
Decide What Is Most Important
Which is more important, holding on to anger, hate, and hurt feelings, or moving past these feelings to live a more enjoyable life? Living in the past keeps you from enjoying your present and accomplishing your dreams for the future. Forgive and let go, so that you can become the person you want to be.
Take Steps to Strengthen Your Relationship
If you decide that you want to continue a relationship with the person who has hurt you, take the necessary steps to build a better relationship with them. Go on a date. Get coffee. Talk. Take action to strengthen the bonds that may have been weakened by the act that caused the need for forgiveness.
Whether you decide to continue your relationship or sever ties with the person causing your pain, you have to allow yourself to move on. If you stay connected with the person, you do not have to forgive and forget, but you do have to let go. Truly forgiving someone means letting go of grudges and putting the act in the past. If you decide that severing ties with the person is the best option, then you truly have to move on from that relationship. Cut ties and let go. Not disconnecting yourself can lead to the inability to forgive.
Forgiveness can be hard, but in the end, it leads to a better life. Life cannot truly be lived if you are stuck in the past. Without forgiveness, we can’t let go of the things that have hurt us. Forgiveness isn’t a sign of weakness. It is a show of strength and proves you can take charge of your life and the way you want to live it.