Thursday, March 10, 2016

How to Forgive and Move On


I think one of the most difficult things to do in life is to forgive someone who has hurt you deeply. I used to think I was a very forgiving person, but recent happenings have proven me wrong, and caused me to reassess my stance on forgiveness and how to go about it. To forgive a person after you have been deeply hurt by their actions or lack of action when necessary, is not as easy as many people say it is; so I won’t tell you to forgive right now and move on. Rather, I’ll tell how to successfully come to a point of forgiveness.

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The first thing you must understand that forgiving a person does not mean you forget what that person did. Except you are able to activate amnesia whenever it suits you, you’ll never fully forget what a person has done to hurt you. The essence of forgiveness is to reduce the impact of hurtful actions as time goes on. Forgiveness means that when you do remember that person, or what they did to you, you don’t have the urge to pull out their hair, or hurt them back. The big question is: how do you get to that point? 

First things first, acknowledge you are hurt. Don’t try to brave it off, or act like it does not bother you. That might make you look strong to superficial admirers, but deep down you know you’re hurting. Accept you’re hurt, own it, and then take the next step. 


Make it known to whoever hurt you that you are offended by their actions. This will not necessarily turn out the way you want. Sometimes, people tend to focus on justifying their actions or highlighting wrongs you have done in the past, rather than acknowledging they have hurt you in some way. Whichever way it goes, try to get it off your chest by talking to the offender or someone who knows the offender and is willing to broker peace, not spread gossip! Sometimes you might skip this step altogether for the singular reason that the person knowingly hurt you, and is fully aware of what he or she has done. Rehashing the issue will not birth anything positive. This is when you learn to accept the apology you will never receive.

Now, the offending party may apologise or tell you to go jump off a cliff. Whatever the case may be, you should now be ready to forgive and move on. Avoid dwelling on the issue for too long whenever it crosses your mind. Think happy thoughts; avoid spiteful conversations where that person’s name is being dragged through the mud. You might think it will make you better, but really it will only increase your bitterness. Avoid slander, spite, gossip and slowly, you will start to feel free. Sometimes, you will need to pray for strength to forgive. Go ahead and do it. Prayer can give you the strength to forgive and move on because it fills you with peace. 

As time goes on, the impact of hurt will be lessened, and your heart will be healed. You will feel you are free because you won't feel the need to hit back where it hurts or slander that person. This does not mean you let that person back into your life. Some friends are worth letting back in, other people should just be kept at arm’s length. Whatever choice you make, ensure that you are not filled with bitterness or anger towards that person. Forgiveness is not as easy as many people make it seem, because only you can feel the emotions and psychological torture. You can make it happen by understanding that it does not mean you automatically forget, nor does it mean you can forgive at the snap of a finger. It’s a process, and it will happen in due time.

2 comments:

  1. I must admit that I still struggle with the issue of forgiveness. Guess it's the fear that the person will still repeat him/herself.

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  2. There is always going to be that fear. That's why it is important that you assess truthfully if you still want that person as an integral part of your life, or if you would rather forgive and let that person go. Whichever option you choose, you must experience freedom in your spirit

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