December 9, 2019
Now that we are close to wrapping up 2019, many of us are thinking about those pesky extra pounds we’ve gained during the year. But what about the extra emotional weight we carry around? It drags us down and saps our energy.
Take this quick forgiveness fitness test to determine whether or not you’re carrying around unnecessary emotional weight.
If you answered YES to any of these questions, you are probably missing out on a great deal of happiness. So many of us are weighed down with resentment and anger, it feels like we’re walking around with cement blocks on our shoulders. When we’re unable to forgive and forget, we’re forever chained to the people and situations that have caused us pain.
Perhaps, like me, you’ve struggled with the concept of forgiveness. My first marriage ended painfully. Because I was unable and unwilling to forgive my first husband, I lived alone for 10 miserable years after our divorce, wallowing in anger and self-pity. There was no room in my heart for a new, healthier relationship. I couldn’t seem to let go of the bitterness even though I realized that the only person I was truly hurting was myself.
After several years, I became close to a circle of friends who seemed to have a special joy and peacefulness about them. One woman, in particular, had a calm about her that I had rarely seen before. I asked her to share her secret of contentment. She told me she had learned how to forgive others and let go of past hurts.
As our friendship strengthened, my resolve to learn how to forgive strengthened with it. I started forgiving small things. When someone cut me off at an intersection, I’d whisper a prayer for his or her safety. When co-workers were cruel to me at a former job, I forgave them and wished for their happiness. Things began to change. I could feel the chains of resentment literally falling away.
When I was finally able to forgive myself for my divorce and forgive my ex-husband for his betrayal, I was set free. For the first time in my life, I felt an inner peace and joy I had never known before. It was exciting, so I decided to apply forgiveness in all areas of my life.
Forgiveness starts at home and it’s a skill that must be practiced. As we grow in forgiveness, we need to focus first on the people we’re closest to. It’s impossible to forgive on a grand scale if we can’t forgive ourselves for our mistakes; or family members for offending us; or our children for lying about where they were after school.
6 Steps to Forgiveness:
Forgiveness is a choice. When you practice it you become a better parent, spouse, coworker, boss, and friend. You’ll also see how forgiveness can make you more successful in your career or business. Learning how to forgive yourself and others will help you shed those unwanted pounds of anger and resentment. Forgiveness will give you the freedom to experience all the joy life has to offer.