The Secret Handbook 4 Teens

The 9th Secret 2 Living Happy: Practice Forgiveness (& the One BIG Reason U Need 2 Forgive & Forget)

forgive

Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea until they have something to forgive. – C.S. Lewis

What a great quote right? In theory, forgiveness sounds like it should be pretty easy to do and the reasons why we should do it are also pretty obvious. But, if you’ve ever been really hurt (and I know as teenagers you get hurt a lot), you know just how hard it is to let go of that hurt and actually forgive the person who hurt you.

Let’s look at what it means to forgive.

Forgiving means letting go of hurt, anger, resentment and thoughts of revenge. It does NOT mean that you’re condoning or pardoning someone for what they did. It simply means that you’re not going to let that act continue to hurt you over and over and over again. If nothing else, think about the power you’re giving the person who hurt you! You’re thinking about them every day. They’re always on your mind. They pop into your head when things are going well and make you feel crappy. Forgiving them actually takes away some of their power over you and that alone is a good enough reason to forgive them.

This leads me to the one big reason you need to practice forgiveness: Forgiveness gives you a fresh start and cuts the ties to the past. 

Not forgiving keeps you chained to the past and, as we all know, the past is over and the place to be is the present moment! When you actively go back to the past and re-live and re-experience painful moments over and over again YOU are the one choosing to go there.  You are the one actively choosing to go back into the past and peel off the scab. Believe me, you are not gaining anything by peeling off that nasty scab. All you’re doing is opening up the wound again and again which slows your healing and, duh, it hurts! By practicing forgiveness, you allow yourself to start fresh and live in the present moment. You tear down the wall in your heart and open yourself up to a new and happy present and future.

As usual, Oprah says it best:

“Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past can be changed.” 

So who have you not forgiven? What hurts are you hanging on to? How would it feel to let that pain go? Who can you forgive today?

Practice forgiveness and you may just realize that the person being punished was you.

 

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