Have you ever experienced a moment where you wanted to forgive someone close to you, a family member, friend, or a lover? No matter how much you try to forgive them, you just can’t seem to. And with time, the anger and resentment builds up. For anyone to forgive someone, you need to change, shift your approach to forgiveness.
Here is how you do it.
1. Stop thinking and start feeling
You can’t trick your mind into forgiving and forgetting. First, you need to go deep and feel the hidden emotions underneath. It can be feelings of disappointment, hurt, or rejection.
You can only heal if you connect to those hidden emotions. To forgive, you need to open up to vulnerability. Go where it hurts the most, and open up to these deep and painful feelings.
2. Connect with your young and wounded self
Go back to the moment you started hating a particular person. Connect to the person you were back then. Hear your younger self out and listen to their side of the story. Let all the feelings of suffering, rejection, and unworthiness come out.
When you listen to your younger wounded self and welcome all the painful emotions, you reclaim your vulnerability. Ignoring painful feelings will never help you to forgive someone. But if you let yourself feel these feelings, only then can you set yourself free.
3. Realize that everyone acts to the best of their ability
You might see the person you want to forgive as someone insensitive, ignorant, and selfish. But you need to realize this person acted to the best of their ability at that moment in time.
He/she might have suffered their own trauma and difficulties in life. Replace your anger with compassion. Realize that no one in this world is actually perfect.
4. Forgiveness doesn’t mean acceptance of deviant behavior
Forgiveness is not accepting or approving lousy behavior. You can forgive someone and still objectively oppose certain behaviors. Look at forgiveness as an act of service to yourself.
Why it seems so difficult to forgive
Are you one of those who believe that if you forgive that person, it will be as if the initial betrayal and the hurt never happened? Forgiveness is not for their benefit; we forgive for ourselves.
There are even medical studies that show that there is a link between forgiveness and health. By forgiving, we can heal from the inside out as well as enjoy the present. Forgiveness takes courage. When we forgive, we can move beyond that hurt.
Traumas and difficulties in life can leave you feeling resentful, hopeless, and a victim. It can be your excuse to stay stuck, or you can accept it as a learning gift, a blessing in disguise that can stem from any problems you may experience.
Take your power back and release the past. The person you forgive will still have their own karmic debt for their actions.
To forgive, you free yourself from your past sufferings. Help yourself by letting go of the past and move on towards a better future.