Monday, March 6, 2017

How to Create a Whole New Mindset in 10 Simple and Powerful Steps (The Better Thinking Series) Part 5: Forgiveness

By Richard Kent Matthews - Coach | Author | Speaker

(The Better Thinking Series)

Forgiveness Is Probably 

Not What You Think


You've been doing it all your life. It's served you well or you wouldn't be here, reading this. Yet, when you learn to think in better, more powerful and meaningful ways, you change not only yourself, but the world around you.

You've been thinking in habitual patterns. Change the patterns of thinking and a new world opens for you. When your mindset changes, your life changes.) 

When you're angry at someone, fearful, annoyed, or seeking revenge, forgiveness is not the word you want to hear in the moment. 

When you've composed yourself a bit, you're ready to deal with your emotions and perhaps let some of the wrathful feelings depart. 

You're ready to forgive. 

No? Not yet? OK, that's fine. 

Now? Good. Let's start by reminding ourselves what forgiveness isn't.

Forgiveness isn’t:
  • Forgetting
  • Condoning
  • Absolution
  • A form of self-sacrifice
  • A one-time decision
Forgiveness is:

  1. A result, a bi-product of an emotional healing process
  2. Means no longer needing our grudges and resentments, hatred or self-pity
  3. For ourselves; it’s a choice
  4. Hard work
  5. Liberating; helps us move on
Ultimately, forgiveness has little if anything to do with the other person, event, group, or whatever the object of your wrath was. It's always about YOU. Your healing, your peace, your return to emotional equilibrium. 

How, then, do we heal?

Stages of Healing

  1. Denial—we play down the impact of the past painful experience
  2. Self-blame—we assume it was our fault for the injustice or injury
  3. Victim—we know it’s not our fault so we wallow in self-pity
  4. Indignation—we are angry and want to perpetrators to pay
  5. Survivor—we were hurt, but we’re still here. We recognize our strengths and return to compassion, sense of humor, and a positive outlook
  6. Integration—we release those who injured us from prison, let go of the pain, and drop the bitterness; we reclaim the energy that we used to hold others captive in our consciousness
Living in this world means pain. As the Buddha says, Life is suffering. But we can make choices as to how we deal with the suffering. 

Forgiveness is the beginning of the process.

(If you have a different perspective or just want to join the conversation, please comment!)

Please click here for Series Introduction to see all series post titles.  

“Happiness leaps into existence from a positive attitude to life. Not just to your own life; to life itself. With that comes a priceless set of freedoms: from fear, anger, hatred, resentment, jealousy and envy. Happiness cannot exist in the presence of those emotions. And those emotions lose much of their power in the presence of a positive mind. 
What a relief.”
Stephanie Dowrick
Choosing Happiness—Life & Soul Essentials
(Tarcher/Penguin © 2005)

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