Forgive, Accept, Embrace
This post is part of The Awakened Heart Project
Week 35-37: Forgive, Accept, Embrace
“The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward.”
- Steve Maraboli
Life Lesson 35: Forgive
They say, “Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong.” Do you agree? I think in many ways, yes it is. Forgiveness is something that no doubt hard to do. We have these emotions and thoughts that surround our experiences, and the ones that hurt and leave a scar often make us jade and resentful. Pain shuts us down and causes us to put up a wall for protection. We build a moat around our heart, and guard it with everything we have. We say, “This will never happen again. They will never hurt me again. They can no longer we trusted”. The problem with all of this is that these walls also keep out the good. Further, when we don’t allow ourselves to forgive, we are unable to release the pain. This pain will stay with us forever. Even worse, sometimes, the pain was simply a misunderstanding, that could quickly and easily be corrected if we didn’t jump to building that wall and moat around our hearts.
We are all just human beings. We’re not perfect. We make mistakes, and sometimes that means hurting others. Sometimes, it’s intentional, but many times it is not. Before you jump to conclusions about another persons intentions, take a step back and ask yourself if you’ve even made a similar mistake. Or ask yourself, could I be thinking too much into this? Perhaps, there’s an explanation. The best approach however, is ti simply TALK to the person that hurt you. Tell them how you felt, and how you interpreted their actions. A mature, reasonable person will take the time to give you an explanation and often an apology. I have found that more often than not, this is the case. It’s northing more than a simple misunderstanding. Certainly not something to lose any sort of relationship over.
Remember, forgiveness does not mean that you will forget, and that it wont happen again. Forgiveness simply means that you’re letting go of the pain and hurt. Your allowing yourself to feel peace. Forgiveness is more for your sake, not for anyone else’s.
“We are all mistaken sometimes; sometimes we do wrong things, things that have bad consequences. But it does not mean we are evil, or that we cannot be trusted ever afterward.”
― Alison Croggon
Life Lesson 36: Accept What Is
This is it. This has just happened. There is no time machine that will take you back to your past and change the circumstances. You have two choices: (1) accept what is, (2) fight against and refuse to accept it. If you choose number (2) that ‘s fine, but just a heads up, your circumstance will still be the same even after all the fighting with yourself. It still is what it is.
So that’s it really. Once something happens, your only true option is to accept it. This means telling yourself, “Okay, I accept this”. But it can also mean, “Okay, I accept this, but I don’t like it”. You don’t have to like everything that happens. That would be ridiculous. There’s a big difference with acceptance and liking the circumstance. As far as relationships go, if someone betrays your trust, you can choose to forgive him/her, accept that what has happened has happened, accept the emotions that you’re facing as a result of this, but you don’t have to allow it to happen again. Acceptance does not mean you lose your backbone and allow anyone to treat you poorly. Acceptance means fining peace in every moment and circumstance.
“The willingness to forgive is a sign of spiritual and emotional maturity. It is one of the great virtues to which we all should aspire. Imagine a world filled with individuals willing both to apologize and to accept an apology. Is there any problem that could not be solved among people who possessed the humility and largeness of spirit and soul to do either — or both — when needed?”
― Gordon B. Hinckley
Life Lesson 37: Embrace The Lesson
Okay, easier said than done right? I know, sometimes you have to dig really REALLY deep to find the lesson or purpose in the experiences. Sometimes you’re digging for a long time as well, and this can get exhausting I know. But I promise you, the purpose, the lesson, it’s all there, if you refuse to give up searching.
Every experience, every person that walks into our lives has a purpose. Some are bigger than others. Some are there simply to say hello, and make you smile on your way to work. Others’ will change your life completely. It’s up to you to find the meaning in each moment. Embrace your life, and embrace your circumstances. The grass is not always greener on the other side. People don’t always have it better. Don’t be a victim in your life, be a creator and inventor. The most amazing people are the ones that rise up from adversity when everyone else thought their circumstances were far too difficult to overcome.
Forgive those that have hurt you. Accept where you are, and how you feel. Don’t fight it. Find peace. Open your eyes, open your heart, and embrace the lessons that life affords you. It’s the painful, more difficult experiences that often teach us the greatest life lessons after all.
“True forgiveness is when you can say, “Thank you for that experience.”
― Oprah Winfrey
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