Forgiveness will set you free. When manifesting our best lives, holding on to resentment from the past can cause a huge, major block in our ability to tap into our power to actually do so.
I can remember a few years ago I attended a seminar on forgiveness. It was at the end of a week long pre practicum experience that was part of my clinical mental health studies. We had a variety of seminars we could have chosen, but I chose this one because, well let’s be honest, it had been a long week and it sounded easy. I had no idea I was about to unlock the lock to my emotional freedom, which in turn as opened up the door for me to create the life I truly desire. The life with the business, the relationship, and the freedom I desired. I had no idea that I would spend the entire seminar in tears realizing all that I had to forgive.
I don’t plan on leaving you in tears here, but it can be an emotional subject. Forgiveness isn’t always easy and in a sense, it is one of the greatest human and spiritual lessons we can learn. So, if you do cry in any of these processes I am about to share, it’s normal and rest assure that those emotions are moving in the way they are meant to.
The First Step
Forgiveness starts will acceptance, radical acceptance for our current situations. We must first accept our current situations completely and nonjudgmentally, no matter what it is.
Radically accepting the current reality does not mean you agree with it or are comfortable with it, but you do stop trying to change what’s happening by getting upset or angry. Getting angry or upset clouds our judgment and stops us from seeing what’s really happening.
Radical acceptance does not mean you give up responsibility either, after acceptance is when you can get to the key to unlocking your emotional freedom and this is where the real work begins, in forgiveness.
Radical Acceptance Statements
- This is the way it is supposed to be.
- The present moment is perfect, even if I don’t like what’s happening.
- This moment is exactly as it should be.
Three Aspects of Forgiveness
- Forgiving others
- Forgiving yourself
- Receiving forgiveness
Forgiving others does not free them of their wrong doing or of their karma. It sets you free so that you can go on living your best possible life. When you carry anger and resentment, it only hurts you. Anger will betray you, it will make you think that you are in control, when in fact you are not.
Forgive yourself and be open to receive forgiveness because you are human. It means you understand and have compassion for the human condition, which you are part of. It frees you to move on to live your best life. When you forgive the resentment and anger is replaced with compassion.
Start the Process
- List the people who you need to forgive. List the things you need to forgive yourself for.
- Complete the prompt: I need to forgive [name of person] for [offense].
- How has the lack of forgiveness caused you to suffer? Write down the emotional and spiritual impact of what happened.
- What are my motivations for forgiving [person’s name] now? Write down why you are engaging in this process now. What are your truest, deepest motivations? Share how the process will make life better for you and others in practical ways. What will it look like when you are finished?
- Write out the wrongdoing. What are you forgiving? Use this as an opportunity to share your account of the things that happened that caused you harm, and how you feel about them. Write as little or as much as you are inclined to write. Act like you are sharing the story with a neutral, non-judging, respectful witness.
- Write and say, “I forgive you, [name of person], for [offense].” Repeat the sentence for every offense.
- Write and speak out loud each day, “I love you, [name of person]. I appreciate you. Thank you for being my teacher.” If you are not in relationship with them, add, “You can go now.” Share any resistance you find in your free-form journal. If one part of the statement above does not work at first, leave it out and work with what you’re willing to say and write. Add the rest when you’re ready.
Here are a few other things you can say or write down (or both)
- “I forgive you (or myself, or the situation). Thank you for the lesson. I let you go.” You might also want to say, “I love you” because things are released through love.
- You could also say, “I forgive you (or myself or the situation). Never again will I knowingly allow this to happen.”
Try to imagine the person with your eyes closed and send them loving kindness.
Try them out and pick the one that works the best for you.
Deann Rae Jensen