Mastering the Art of Forgiveness
Forgive and forget. I’m sure we’ve all been told that or used that line on someone at some point. However, it may be much easier said than done. In reality, forgiveness is essential for maintaining long-term, healthy relationships – with oneself and other people.
Studies have shown that the virtue of forgiveness helps people to lead healthier and happier lives. Now you want that, don’t you? Are you struggling to forgive someone who may have wronged you? Or do you know someone who is stuck in that situation? This article will help you climb out of that tough spot.
- Don’t keep going over the story: Have you already said the story about a few hundred times to people around you? Stop right there. It’s the first step. The more you keep saying it, the more it becomes a part of you. Not only because you’re putting yourself in that spot again, but also because of how listeners would react. Not every listener understands that there’s a fine line between sympathy and empathy. For all you know, you may end up feeling worse after sharing your story. Do not let yourself play the role of the victim. The only way forward is to move past it.
- Step into the other person’s shoes: Every individual has their own battles. You never know what exactly another person is going through. Don’t let your judgements and feelings speak in the situation. Perhaps their callous actions are rooted in their deepest fears or insecurities. Try looking at matters from their perspective. This does not mean you have to excuse the other person’s actions. Walking a mile in their shoes would only make the process easier for you.
- Take it as a life lesson: Make peace with it – this is probably the hardest part of it all. You should have given yourself enough space and time to process matters, to think about it in this manner. Maybe it was meant to be a learning experience. Understand what you’ve gathered from it, all of which can all only benefit you, at least in the long run. Finding gratitude in the situation will take you one step closer to acceptance and forgiving.
Forgiveness has almost nothing do with the other person. It’s all within you. It’s a virtue you inculcate in yourself. You do not want to be tied down to/by anything, because being weighed down leaves you feeling miserable. And the only feeling you want to feel is happiness.