What can we learn about forgiveness?
It is a question that continues to hit the core of our souls and hearts throughout our entire lives. Forgiving usually comes when we have been dealt with some kind of level of hurt. Hurt is often unexpected and can knock you to the ground emotionally, completely taking over your mind, and consuming your daily thoughts. It is not just hurtful actions, but words that leave a sting in our conscious and subconscious minds. But, how do we get past them, and how does one truly move on from hurt? Is the power of forgiveness the key to finding the peace we all deserve after dealing with heartache or tragedy?
Like many of you, I have always been a strong believer in igniting my mind to be better, act better, and engage myself to work on my own development. As the saying, goes, “if we are not learning, we are not growing.” I echo that statement and truly believe that forgiveness is a major force that can upward our thinking and strengthen our platforms in understanding and feeling more grounded.
What needs to be noted is that you are the owner of your own thoughts. No self-help book, spiritual guru, or even I, should ever tell you what you should or shouldn’t do when it comes to dealing with tragedy. That is your own journey to define. However, if you are open to looking for a guide or a dose of understanding when it comes to hurt, then I hope these points helps put your mind at ease and opens your perspective on the topic of forgiveness.
1.) Control The Clock
Everyone wants to feel an element of control when they are hit with hurt. It’s a natural reaction when our emotions go through moments of ups and downs, feeling of being taken advantage of, or when your feelings truly do get hurt. I encourage you to use time as a tool to help you process and find the peace to forgive. Time is always on your side when it comes to finding forgiveness and strength. Whether it is one day, one week, one year, or 10 years, remember that you are in control of that timeline. There is no rule book when it comes to forgiveness. Depending on what occurred, I suggested you let the other person know that you need time to process—especially if it is somebody you deeply care about. Articulating your words and expressing that you need space actually helps build that bridge to finding a resolution.
2.) Keep Off Social Media
We have all seen those posts where people’s dirty laundry is aired out on their social media platforms. Facebook seems to be more of an open diary for people to make these personal and often passive aggressive statements. If you have been in a predicament or situation where hurt has occurred, I suggest you stay off of social media until you are able to fully reflect and own your feelings. The Internet has a way of making everything worse, as pictures and messages are often misread or taken too personally. Plus, the un-follow button is often used as a tactic to deliver a message of how you are really feeling in the moment. So, before you go off and start pressing buttons, take a step back and disconnect from your laptop or iPhone. Part of the forgiving process involves having clarity and comfort in your own mind. That is hard to do when your brain is occupied with Facebook riddles and rants.
3.) Find the Understanding
Getting to that point of forgiveness is a process that involves understanding and respect from both parties. If neither respect or understanding are on the table, then it will be difficult for any kind of resolution to occur. Sometimes you have to simply agree to disagree and move on. That is not always that simple depending on what happened in the past. But, it must be noted that every one of us has asked for forgiveness at some point in our life. It may not have been the same kind of hurt or the exact situation but we know what it is like when our heart aches for healing and forgiveness from others.
4.) Customize Your Forgiveness
In times of greater tragedy, one must take a different approach and look within one’s own self to decide what level of forgiveness you are most comfortable with. Does forgiving someone that deliberately hurt you or caused you harm actually mean reconnecting with them all together? I think not. Sometimes, having a conversation with yourself, your form of faith, or your own soul is just enough. The best part is that you get to decide what will give you peace. You get to customize your form of forgiveness because everyone’s feelings and thoughts are going to be different. That is the beauty of forgiveness. We are all able to choose what works best for us.
There is no right or wrong when it comes to forgiveness because life and the challenges that we are presented with are not ever that clear-cut. There are two sides to every situation and different levels of hurt, harm and heartache. I challenge you to think about any unresolved matter from your past. If it is something that is continuously on the forefront of your mind, perhaps it needs to find an opportunity to be released. The good news – you get to define what that looks like. My only hope is that it brings you the progress and the peace that you deserve.
With Love and Gratitude,