Forgiveness in Relationship
When someone approaches you with those two apologetic words, “I’m sorry,” are you able to respond in kind with those ever important words, “I forgive you?”
In order to have a healthy and positive relationship we must learn to forgive. There are of course many other characteristics of a healthy relationship, such as trust and honesty, communication skills and willingness to compromise – though forgiveness may be one of the most important components of a positive relationship.
In contemplating how to forgive someone, it may or may not help to express your feelings to the other person. If the relationship is important to you and you would like to maintain it, it may be very useful for you to tell the other person — in non-threatening language — how their actions affected you (see this article on conflict resolution for tips). If the person is no longer in your life, if you want to cut off the relationship, or if you have reason to believe that things will get much worse if you address the situation directly, you may want to just write a letter and tear it up (or burn it) and move on.
Look For the Positive
Journaling about the benefits you’ve gotten from a negative situation — rather than focusing on the emotions you have surrounding the event, or writing about something unrelated — can actually help you to forgive and move on more easily.
Empathy, particularly, is associated with forgiveness, and can make the process easier. Instead of seeing them as ‘the enemy,’ try to understand the factors that they were dealing with. Were they going through a particularly difficult time in their lives? Have you ever made similar mistakes? Try to remember the other person’s good qualities, assume that their motives were not to purposely cause you pain (unless you have clear indicators otherwise), and you may find it easier to forgive.
When you’ve been hurt, figuring out how to forgive can be difficult. These strategies should be helpful in your journey of forgiving and releasing the stress of the past.
( International Trainer, Motivator & Coach
Edexcel Level – 4 Btec Professional Award ( UK)
ITOL Diploma in Coaching Excellence (UK) )