What is forgiveness? Forgiveness is commonly defined as the release of feelings of hurt, resentment or revenge in an intentional and deliberate way. It does not have anything to do with whether the person being forgiven deserves forgiveness. It does not mean forgetting, excusing or condoning the offender and it does not mean that you have to reconcile or allow them in your life. It is an act of releasing debilitating feelings and regaining your power and your peace.
Anger, resentment, malice, blame and grudges are all legitimate emotions we experience in a world that is often unfair, cruel and intolerant. Things happen in our lives that make an enduring impact. People treat us in ways that are hurtful, unkind and undeserved. Feeling responsive emotions is natural and needed, however dwelling in those feelings and carrying them forward with us is a heavy burden to bear. It is unnecessary and will drag us down. It can be hard to let go of these emotions though, especially when there has been no vindication or validation of our feelings and no act of repentance or remorse from the offenders. It is a heavy burden that can affect us long-term in many different ways. it blocks us from feelings of joy, can impact our health and actually changes our brain. Additionally, we sometimes hold some of these feeling with regard to our own actions and past mistakes. This does as much good as banging your head against a wall, except that in the case of banging our head against a wall, we usually would stop when it hurts enough. That is more often than not, not the case with holding on to toxic and self-sabotaging emotions.
How can we let go and free ourselves from this burden of toxic and negative emotions and why should we when something really terrible has been done to us? The "why" is quite simple - because we deserve it! We deserve to let go and put down the burden of past injury and move freely forward. We can do this with forgiveness. When I talk of forgiveness, I am referring to the letting go of the feelings that are weighing us down and that has little or nothing to do with the offenders who have caused us injury. Feeling compassion, though and just being able to let feeling go is amazingly freeing. It does not absolve the wrong or the wrong-doer. but allows us to move on to the present time and release the past. Forgiving yourself is sometimes the most difficult form of letting go. We can walk away from other people and situations and not be reminded of the past more easily. That is hard to do when the forgiveness and letting go is with ourselves. If you remember that you are constantly evolving and the person you are today, is not the person you were in the past, it can be easier. You are letting go of the person you were yesterday to embrace the new and better person you have become. We are different in every moment. If we have learned from a mistake, it has served us and we can let it go. Holding on to it serves no purpose. A man who has a lot of pain due to nephropathy, told me when I asked him why he did not take an aspirin or use other types of pain relief to help him be more comfortable, answered saying -- he felt like he might deserve it. I know many people have feelings like this that are very hard to let go of. They have become part of their comfort zone and are as much a habit, as anything else. Still if they can let go of those old feelings, wherever it may have come from, and just be in the present moment, they will free themselves from what does not serve them and move into a better and more resourceful state.
How do you go about forgiving, whether forgiving others or yourself? Where do you start and how do you go about it? These 8 steps can give you a helpful guide to the process:
Feeling free of the heavy burden of anger, resentment and grudges is truly worth the effort and release it takes to forgive. It may seem difficult, but peace feels heavenly. I wish you peace!
Kate Olson, CHt, CPC, founder of Soul Fire Wisdom Life Coaching, Embrace Change Hypnosis & NLP, Total Wellness Products. www.soulfirewisdom.com , www.embracechangehypnosis.com , 206-566-1615
Blog By Kate Olson
Kate is a Hypnotherapist, NLP Practitioner & Trainer, Reiki Master, Energy Healer, Life Coach and more. To find out more about her or her work, click the links below:
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About the Blog
After 4 years of featuring at least 1 guest Author a month this blog changed in 2020. I loved featuring the posts of other great people who also believe in mind, body, spirit wellness. I will continue to feature articles submitted to me on this topic that align with my own mission. However, finding & reaching out to others is time consuming and I do it for my radio show, Soul Talks and other groups and projects and so for this blog i will be ramping up my own posts and perspective. posting mostly my own blogs. I will be happy & excited to post articles from those who submit them to me.