Bitterness eats away at us and is damaging to our health; both physically and emotionally. The ability to move on is at the point that we accept the need to change and accept our responsibility in this aspect. No matter how damaging the situation has been and how vulnerable or exploited we may feel, the starting point is our decision to move forward.
If we allow a problem to grow, by dwelling in the problem, then bitterness will grow; we then in fact give the power to the other person – allowing bitterness to grow and to consume our time. However big or small the offence, it will grow if it is not dealt with. It is up to us as individuals to decide how much more time and energy this will drain away.
As we take control of our own emotions, we can cut off the cycle that we can become stuck in. It always surprises me in my own situations, as well as in my work with clients who have experienced negative situations, that we are the ones who catalyst our own healing. This starts with the choice to change, to move forward, to step out of the negative cycle.
We can sit and wait for an apology before offering forgiveness – but an apology may not be heading our way. In an ideal world, there would be an apology with every act of forgiveness. We may have been taught as a child the words “I’m sorry” and “I forgive you” – saying it by rote. However, some things run too deep and an instantaneous verbal response does not cut it! [Neither does letting the person back into life, which could re-start the negative cycle in some situations]
With more understanding of the need for forgiveness and why we say “I forgive you”, even if just in our own minds (as remember that the person who caused the offence may not even be aware that you are hurting); we will start a process that means that life can go on, where more positivity and time and head-space can be freed. We may be unaware of the internal emotional shift that can take place with each act of forgiveness, creating positive progress.
So, if this is relevant to you or stirs something up in you about any situation, then I have put some statements below that you could choose to say as your starting point today:
“This is day 1 of forgiveness, I don’t expect this to be easy, but I have decided to move on today…”
“This will have no power over me as I am making MY decision, I am rising above even my own emotions…”
The hardest step is the first……. and then holding ground. No one says this is easy, but forgiveness will start the healing process.
I know that when people contact our practice, that even the phone call may have come with much debate and inner turmoil, and that securing that first appointment with us is a tough decision as it is the first step in a healing process…
Our service is not about ensuring forgiveness, it is about supporting individuals and families through their ‘individual’ needs. But the first step will be something that requires the thought of change, however this may reveal itself.
Author – Sarah Muller – Managing Practitioner