"When a deep injury is done us, we never recover until we forgive." ~ Alan Paton
I thought I knew what forgiveness meant. I thought I had nothing - and no one else - to forgive. I thought I completely made my peace. That's why when the topic of 'Forgiveness' came up in The Creativity Book by Eric Maisel a few days ago, I immediately shrugged off the exercise.
But recently, while writing about something completely different - I ended up facing the concept of forgiveness again. I was just about to shut it off once more when suddenly, some ghosts of past hurts and demons of disappointments came out of invisible hiding places.
NO, obviously, I wasn't done. Not quite.
When the hurts and disappointments cut too deeply - and the pains have been lingering for far too long - forgiveness and letting go become a lifelong process.
So, from hereon, I hope to be able to face forgiveness without flinching.
I need to learn to:
- Acknowledge the things that I need forgiveness for.
- Give forgiveness without limits.
- Forgive myself.
Over and over and over. Until I know that I'm completely free.
"We achieve inner health only through forgiveness - the forgiveness not only of others but also of ourselves" ~ Joshua Loth Liebman
- Forgiveness Self-Test - A short questionnaire. Somewhat vague, but can still be useful to some.
- Forgiveness as a Key to the Future- Some thoughts and tips on forgiveness.
- The Top 10 Steps to Forgiveness - Some useful ideas on the path to forgiveness.
- Rituals for Forgiveness - Some resources on Oprah regarding forgiving yourself.
"When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free." ~ Catherine Ponder
"Sincere forgiveness isn't colored with expectations that the other person apologize or change. Don't worry whether or not they finally understand you. Love them and release them. Life feeds back truth to people in its own way and time." ~ Sara Paddison
1) List the people that you have hurt. Write a note to every single one saying, "I'm sorry for..." No need to send the notes. Just be sincere with the apology.
2) List every single person who hurt and/or disappointed you. List why they cause you pain. Be specific, if you can. Forgive every single person and pain.
3) Every day, find ways to forgive yourself. For not doing the things you feel you needed to do. For saying things you feel you shouldn't have said. Say, "(Your Name), I forgive you for... Let it go."
4) Collect quotes on forgiveness.
5) Collect pictures and images that depict forgiveness for you.
6) Write the word "Forgive". Over and over. Fill the page. See what happens. Do the same with the word "Sorry".
7) Write a letter of forgiveness to yourself. Include the words... "It's OK..."
"The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong." ~ Mohandas Gandhi