Inspired by Associated Press interview with Dr. Nancy
Would you like to soar ahead in life unencumbered by emotional baggage? Then ask yourself: Is there anyone that you need to forgive or who needs to forgive you? Holding onto hurts, resentments of grudges takes up a lot of energy, even when you aren’t thinking about it. It’s like carrying a backpack that you have forgotten is there and yet it weighs you down. This is true for any emotional baggage, but especially for people that you carry in the pack that you have not forgiven.
And why is it so hard to forgive or even forget? Because there is an erroneous belief that forgiving someone makes what they did alright. There could not be anything further from the truth. When you forgive, you are not saying that what happened was acceptable, or that it wasn’t hurtful, or even that you think the person who did should be let off the hook. It merely says that you are done carrying the emotional hurt that gives away your personal power and holds you both in a knot of distress.
There are different approaches to forgiveness. Different situations may benefit from using different the methods. A powerful method is AWARENESS AND RELEASE.
With awareness and release, if you continue to blame someone for what they said, did or didn’t do, you continue to hold hurt, anger, resentment and disappointment. If you think of someone that you need to forgive, ask yourself what feelings go with the memories? Where in your body do you feel the feelings? And how much does it affect you?
Forgiving is letting go of the toxic emotions that get stored in the body and can even lead to illness. It is saying that you are done with the situation and the memories and can release them so that you are free of the baggage that went with the lack of forgiveness. And remember, it doesn’t mean that what the person did is okay.
How do you begin to forgive?
- Ask yourself, in total honesty, if you had any part in what happened. Accepting your part in any loss of friendship or relationship will assure that you don’t make that mistake again. Refusing to see that you had a part in the problem is almost always a guarantee that you will make the same mistake again.
- If necessary, apologize within yourself for your part, or at least admit it to yourself, acknowledging how you participated in the rift.
- See the negative connection between you and the other person dissolve.
- Send positive emotions to the place formerly held by the negative connection, such as release, happiness, prosperity, abundance, and wisdom for you both.
- See you both moving forward free of the burden of the past.
- Give thanks for the lesson learned and accept new ways of being that break old patterns of holding past hurts.
- Now notice how you feel. Do you feel lighter, more accepting of yourself and your emotions? If so, sit with the new feelings for a while. Allow yourself to accept your past and look forward to your future.