Science shows us that there is a direct relationship between forgiveness and health. Forgiving someone who has wronged you is beneficial to your health.
Feelings of unforgiveness release stress chemicals and raises your blood pressure. Research also shows that rational thinking is negatively affected by emotions of vengeance and anger.
In the past, humans prevented ongoing harm by taking revenge. It is hardwired in our system, making it difficult to forgive.
It might be easier to hold a grudge. But it is better for our health and well-being to let go of resentments.
Forgiveness Enlarges Your Future
Unforgiveness reveals an obsession with the past. You are stuck on an event that has control over you in the present. Because you are filled with resentment, you keep reliving a traumatic experience and imagining it going many different ways. So you also imagine scenarios of strong retribution and justice.
This mindset turns people into victims. Feelings of helplessness lead to blame and a refusal to move forward.
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” – Louis B. Smedes.
How To Become A Forgiver
It takes more than good intentions to practice forgiveness.
You need to reframe your traumatic experience and hold the people accountable for causing pain. Then you need to decide to forgive. No more playing the victim and being stuck in a cycle of inaction.
Find others who have experienced a similar pain and share your story with them. This does not make the pain go away but it teaches us not to be attached to a painful event in the past.
When you move past your own pain, you start to understand why the other person caused you hurt. You begin to see how their lives shaped them to make the choices they made.
Finally, you find meaning in the suffering you experienced. As Victor Frankl describes in his book, “A Man’s Search For Meaning,” humans can heal from even the worst offense when they find meaning in their suffering.
Sheevaun Moran is a business advisor, master coach, quantum energy thought leader and the founder of Energetic Solutions. She uses business principles with energetic techniques to help more than 25,000 entrepreneurs, CEOs and leaders bring instant focus and shifts to clarity, purpose, and profits.
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