alcoholism, addiction, forgivenessJoanna has forever been committed to a personal growth journey. She came far in liberating herself from an abusive family of origin and creating a beautiful life for herself.

In one of our coaching sessions she shared that, “At this stage of my life I’ve overcome most of the stuff that holds me back. I so wish I could liberate myself from the remaining hurt and anger towards my mother that still sometimes haunts me.”

“I know that she was limited and did the best that she could given her own story of abuse. Still, I can’t seem to let go of my anger toward her.”

Do you feel that certain thoughts that loop around in your head interfere with your potential for happiness?

There is a saying that ‘holding onto anger or resentment is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies.’

Forgiveness is about giving up the suffering of the past and being willing to forge ahead with a greater potential for personal freedom. Who doesn’t want that?

The research shows that forgiveness benefits the mind, body and soul. We are happier, healthier, and more connected with others when we develop the capacity to forgive.

Even though each of us have our own unique story of anger and hurt there are two components to forgiveness: GRIEVING what was and what could have been and LETTING GO of the suffering.

Regardless of the offense, the process of forgiveness remains the same: After you’ve grieved you must CHOOSE to release the anger and hurt. We do this so that we can liberate ourselves from our own suffering.

The most effective way to do this is to heighten your awareness about the thought looping and to interrupt the cycle.

Being mindful of your thought process opens a doorway for you to then choose to focus on gratitude, compassion, and kindness.

With practice over time this strategy works.

Why then is it so hard to give up a grudge and forgive someone who has hurt or betrayed us? 

Probably because we have told ourselves “the story” that keeps looping around in our minds for so long that the story now has a life of its own.

Learning to tell ourselves a DIFFERENT STORY with a brighter future filled with possibilities puts us in the position to let go of what COULD HAVE BEEN…

When we realize how the old story continues to hold us back and keep us small it’s a compelling argument for why we need to forgive.

If we are to live up to our full potential and lead our lives fully then forgiveness becomes essential.

Forgiveness is about letting yourself FEEL the full range of emotions—grief, anger, and hurt while cracking your heart open with loving kindness towards yourself.

Surprisingly forgiveness often begins with oneself: for staying in a painful relationship, speaking poorly of others, missing opportunities, making poor choices, or not seeing the writing on the wall…

Once you internalize that YOU are WORTHY of FORGIVENESS, then you might find it easier to summon the COMPASSION for the person who injured or disappointed you.

PATIENCE and PRACTICE matter when learning to forgive for you cannot rush the process. It’s important that the feelings move through you to get to the other side.

The more you let the idea of forgiveness infuse itself into your conscious and unconscious awareness, the more skilled you will become at internalizing this powerful skill.

Gratitude and forgiveness are key components to rising into your magnificence. As one of my students recently said, “Who am I to not be MAGNIFICENT?”

So, who do you choose to forgive? How will you revise your victim to hero story?

As always I’d love to hear from YOU! Please join me in my new Facebook group. We can keep the dialogue going there. Here’s the link:

Behind the Therapy Door: Transform Your Life
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