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  • Writer's pictureDenise Neal

To Forgive or Not To Forgive?

Updated: Jun 3, 2020

Have you been hurt in past relationships? If you're still holding on to feelings of anger, it's time to let go and find power in forgiveness.

When you forgive, it's easier to put the past behind you and move forward. Most importantly, forgiving others allows you to be free of the negative energy that's holding you back. Discover how to forgive and the many benefits you can experience as a result of this compassionate act.

It is also crucial to forgive yourself, and actually, when you practice self-forgiveness, you may find it is much easier to extend forgiveness to the other party. Whether you think you had a part in the situation or not ~ you did.

Whether it was through an action, behavior toward the other party - OR, if you did not protect yourself ~ allowed yourself to turn your head the other way, handed your empowerment right into their hands.

Many people refuse to let go of past pain because they are so focused on payback, or evil karma taking hold of the person who hurt you. These daydreams of revenge may be natural in the course of human despair, however, what you do not realize is how these thoughts are keeping you TIED to the person who hurt you. Which in turn, is harmful to you because it keeps you in stuck energy and stunts your growth. These betrayals feel horrible, but with them always comes an opportunity to learn and grow from the experience. Revenge is not included in that lesson. Being hurt by a friend, family member, or lover is absolutely devastating, but that pain can potentially move you forward into experiences you may not have had otherwise. I

In healing through your pain, you may find new strength you didn't know you had; or maybe the experience can allow you to show a deeper empathy for others who have been through similar situations. When you have allowed yourself to work through the many stages of grief and loss, believe it or not you will eventually be able to look for the beneficial ways in which your challenges have affected you, changed you broadened you, and yes ~ even empowered you.

Forgiving others has a freeing effect on your mind and spirit. Forgiveness does NOT mean you have to allow the person back into your life; or, if you choose to do so you understand how you will create boundaries that allow you to feel empowered in the situation as well. You may not come together in the same capacity you were at one time, and that is okay. The important thing is to go through the healing process and come out the other side feeling lighter once, instead of dragging it around keeping you trapped in shame, anger, sorrow. You don't have to forget that it's there; you simply choose to accept that it is no longer a part of your present. Be eternally grateful for what you have learned from the situation ~ and grateful you are no longer a part of the toxicity of betrayal behaviors.

For myself, I have found keeping a separate journal has helped immensely. By naming it the "Slush Pile," it gave me permission to unload and write whatever I wanted to say ~ allowing me to purge while feeling the pain and anger of the betrayals. Here is what has held my hand through a couple betrayal processes.

I divided the book into different sections, something like this.

*The Day, The Slush, Affirmations Each morning upon waking, I wrote exactly how I felt when my eyes opened. It ranges from tears, to anger, to utter fear ~ many different emotions hit me upon opening my eyes ~ to the point of asking when in the world will I wake up and this not be the FIRST thing I think about. Unfortunately, that takes quite awhile, however, tracking it helps me to make sense of what is going on within my heart and soul.

*The Slush section I write and write and write ~ dropping all pretenses of fear around someone reading it. We MUST get it out, my friends. When it is all said and done, what a beautiful ceremony to behold when the journal can burn in a ritual of freedom and forgiveness, yes?

*The Affirmations section is exactly what it states. "Today I give my permission to cry at the drop of a hat to assist me in my healing process." An affirmation away keeps the hatred away.

*Self-Accountability section is where I pin-pointed in what ways I need to forgive myself for my part in the betrayal breakdown. I find that by looking honestly, the realization hit hard of the countless times I turned my head the other way for fear of what the outcome would be. Fear of the pain it would bring, fear of truth oozing ~ choosing to slap the bandaid back on. When we spend time looking at where we are responsible for our OWN actions as well, it really helps in forgiveness of self and others.

*My Bulldogs section ~ I love it. I added that a little later in the game (like, a month). This is my list of those friends and family that are undeniably my tried and true people. It feels amazing recognizing those who are sincerely soul tribe. It is also extremely important to the healing process ~ not to continuously weigh them down with the grief, but to know they are supportive and behind you during the trying time ~ and always.

The saying "you know who your people are when the chips are down" can not be any truer. Sometimes it is surprising who drops out and who holds your hand when you need it. But, then......that's another side of forgiveness and compassion as well.

How are you at forgiving? What are some of your processes?

If it would benefit you to talk about it, let's schedule a time for a session. Forgiveness can be a beautiful thing when understanding the process fully.



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