Forgiveness is a tricky thing. It’s both an emotion and an act. It doesn’t always come and if it does, it doesn’t always make us feel better. However, forgiveness isn’t always about the other person. In fact, forgiveness is about you. Forgiveness is a healing journey that can have endless benefits long after you’ve moved on from a trauma. If you’re struggling with forgiveness on your healing journey, here are a few things to remember.
1. Forgiveness Does Not Mean Forgetting
Forgiveness doesn’t mean you’re totally wiping the slate clean. It doesn’t mean you’re forgetting what happened. To move forward, you need to recognize the truth of the situation. When you can acknowledge and accept what happened, then you can start moving on. With this, you can find the motivation to heal.
2. Sometimes Forgiveness Isn’t Direct
What this means is that sometimes you can’t always direct your forgiveness to the person who hurt you for one reason or another. Forgiveness is for your benefit, never theirs. Forgiveness is so that you can feel better. Part of the forgiveness process is releasing the thoughts and emotions tied to this person.
3. Forgiveness is About Release
Forgiveness is about releasing regrets or resentments that consume you and your valuable energy. It takes a lot of mental and emotional energy to carry resentments and regrets around. Forgiveness allows you to become lighter, to release those, and to move forward.
4. It’s Okay to Feel
Forgiveness isn’t something that happens overnight. In fact, forgiveness is often a journey that takes time. This means that it’s okay to full experience every emotion that comes up during the healing process. This includes anger, sadness, shame, and fear, etc.
Forgiving someone else is sometimes easier than forgiving ourselves. That’s because forgiving yourself requires you to acknowledge and accept responsibility for something you might not be particularly proud or fond of. Fortunately, if you’re struggling with forgiveness, whether it’s forgiving yourself or another, counseling can help. A compassionate counselor can help you identify parts of yourself that you need to forgive. Additionally, counseling can help you find the strength to forgive someone who has caused you trauma. Our team of counselors can help you find the strength to forgive through a series of sessions that provide you the safe space to express yourself and feel through your forgiveness journey in order to heal.