Nearly everyone I know has been hurt by someone at some point in their life by either harmful words or actions. Maybe you’ve been told you’re a bad parent by one of your in laws or maybe you’ve been the subject of gossip. These wounds, some more painful than others, can leave you feeling hurt, angry, bitter or even wanting revenge and that’s just a piece of what it can do to you. So, do you forgive or not? How do you let go when you’ve been wronged?
Study after study has found that when we hold grudges that it may alter our health. Rapid heart rates, high blood pressure, depression, anxiety, anger and even weight gain are some of the side effects. By forgiving others, we can reduce these things and end up having better relationships with those that we want to be around, begin to feel happy and hopeful again and have an overall sense of well being.
To help heal my own pain and suffering, I’ve learned how to forgive. Was it easy? Heck no! But, Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves. It doesn’t mean that we condone another person’s action or behavior. It’s to release the pain that we’ve been holding onto and allow ourselves the freedom to move on and live the life that we’re meant to live. It’s okay to let things go!
One exercise that I have learned to do to help with this is by writing a forgiveness letter. No need to worry….you don’t have to send it out. It’s for your eyes only. Here’s what you’re going to do.
Grab a pen and paper and address it to whom ever has hurt you. Next, you’ll write why you’re writing the letter and why you’re hurt. You can go into great detail here. Just write out what you’re feeling…let it flow. You want to release ALL the hurt that you are feeling. Once you’ve shared everything with them in this letter, close the letter by indicating what steps you’re going to take in forgiving them. There really is no right or wrong way to right this letter. It’s about letting it all out and by deciding to be at peace once again. Once my letter is completed, I read it aloud to myself (that’s so much more powerful than reading it silently and it might bring up some STRONG emotion which is TOTALLY okay!) and as I after I say each offense, I add “_____, I forgive you.” You’ll then rip it up and discard it or you can do as I do and take it outside (in a safe environment) and burn it, allowing the ashes of the letter to flow freely into the Universe.
By simply doing this one exercise of forgiveness, it’s allowed me to heal, physically and mentally. It’s granted me the freedom to move past those grudges and the ability to learn how to set the necessary boundaries so that I can stay healthy. I’ve even written a letter to myself. You see, sometimes, we can be the hardest critics of them all. That’s why I felt it was so important to share with you so that next time (or maybe even now), you’ll have a tool at your fingertips to help you forgive.
I share many things like exercise with my coaching clients. Its one tool that allows us to heal from our pasts and become who we want to be. If you haven’t yet, schedule your complementary coaching session (Yep, it’s FREE!) where we will work together to help you to move forward. Email me here to reserve your session.
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