This article / blog was written by Shola
This article / blog can be found here: thepositivitysolution.co
"The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong." - Mahatma Gandhi
Freedom and forgiveness - two powerful words that are critical to living our most positive lives possible.
While I don't expect much of an argument about the importance of freedom, I don't expect as many people to embrace the life-saving positivity of forgiveness.
Because it's hard. Really hard. In fact, I don't know if there is an act in the world that requires more inner strength than the act of forgiveness.
Don't believe me?
Let's say that your significant other cheated on you and gave you an incurable STD, or your babysitter severely burned your toddler because she left him unattended while she was messing around on Facebook, or your coworker spread a vicious lie about you that was believed by your boss and it ended up getting you fired and destroying your career.
Would it be easy for you to show forgiveness in any of those situations? If so, you're officially a better person than I am.
Extreme examples? Okay, fair enough. But many of us struggle with forgiving much lesser acts than the ones mentioned above, don't we?
When someone deeply hurts us (or someone we love), one of the easiest and most natural things to do is to hold on to that bitterness, anger and hatred for as long as possible. In extreme cases, we use all of our power and strength to direct our negative energy toward the person/people who hurt us.
I've been there and it's still something that I struggle with often.
In order to make the forgiveness process a little easier for all of us, let's start by blowing up some of the myths about what real forgiveness is all about.
Real Forgiveness: Healing Ourselves
"Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die." - Buddha
Forgiveness is a conscious decision to release feelings of resentment and vengeance toward the person/people who have hurt you.
Just to clear up the most common misconceptions, forgiveness is not about:
Condoning the behavior.
Forgetting that it ever happened (if you forget, how could you remember the lesson?)
Giving the other person a "free pass" and becoming best friends again.
Getting to a point where you're fine with what happened.
The biggest misconception of all is that forgiveness is about extending kindness to the person who hurt you. That is not the case at all.
Forgiveness is about extending kindness to yourself by starting the healing process.
I'm going to stop Shola right here and add something of my own. It's great that we are forgiving those that hurt us, but what about forgiving ourselves as well? I'm gearing this directly towards eating healthier and putting one foot in front of the other and continuing day-to-day on our journey to a better self. So you ate a piece of cake, you had a candy bar, you decided that the salad wasn't satisfying enough so you topped it with a desert. We have all been there, we have all done that. Our choice to forgive ourselves and move on is the determining factor on our journey to understanding in the first place 1.) why we are sabotaging ourselves in the first place and 2.) why we need to learn to forgive ourselves to move on. It boils down to choices. We all have them. Which one will you choose? Will you choose forgiveness or will you choose the destruction of yourself and those around you?
Just for kicks ~