Benefits

7 steps to peace of mind, happiness, freedom and forgiveness

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Aviva Engel info@choiceofforgiveness.com via inspire3mail.com 

So, today I wanted to share with you the 7 steps to forgiveness….

Maybe you are dealing with something in your life right now that’s bothering you a little bit – or maybe it’s driving you nuts.

Well – this will really help you!

Thing is, the people that drive us crazy always bring with them an opportunity for growth. And that means you get the GIFT!

So here are the 7 steps to peace of mind, happiness, freedom and forgiveness:

1. Find Your Clarity

Before you can forgive somebody, it’s essential that you clearly identify the offense against you. Exactly what was it that hurt you? And why, until now, have you been unable, or unwilling, to forgive them?

There are times in all our lives when we may feel tremendous anger and loathing towards someone (usually someone we are related to, married to, or work with) but cannot articulate exactly why we feel the way we do.

Emotions can be blinding. So the trick is to start by thinking about these three questions: 

Who hurt you?

What hurt you?

And why did this action offend you as it did?

This kind of self-reflection is the all-important first step in the act of forgiveness.

2. Find A Friend Who Listens Well


Once you have some clarity, it’s time to talk it over with someone you trust. An empathetic and non-judgmental pair of ears is what you need here. (Go to a supportive friend, NOT one that disagrees with you on everything, okay?)

This might be a friend, family member, spiritual leader, or a trained therapist. Unburdening yourself is going to feel really good, and help you find some answers.

3. Don’t Suppress The Pain


Pain – physical and emotional – shows up for the best of us. You may be in the habit of suppressing your emotional pain – your deepest wounds – because, frankly, that HURTS. Who wants to feel THAT?

But while you might feel better suppressing in the short-term, it’s incredibly detrimental in the long-term. Being numb doesn’t mean you got better, it just means you stopped feeling. On the other hand, if you opt to merely wallow in anger – in lieu of serious reflection – you’ll get stuck there like a dinosaur in a tar pit.

And, on top of everything else, this anger will entrench itself deeper and deeper in your psyche, and you’ll NEVER feel free. Yikes.

Feeling the pain to heal the pain is key.

4. The Truth Will Set you free


By accepting the depths of your genuine feelings, you can start to forgive yourself. If you deny your bona fide feelings, forgiveness will never be possible. It’s important to start with yourself, because sometimes we are harder on ourselves than anyone else!

So you get clear, and you talk it out, and you feel it all, and something cool happens. A doorway starts to open to INSIGHT. You will begin to see things differently.

Why? Because emotion is really slanted. It always distorts the truth. Only when you calm down and feel your feelings and begin to get still can the truth arise.

5. Honestly Assess Your Role in the Transgression


Life is a far cry from a seamless odyssey. Often it’s a mess. So it’s important to own up to your role in the mess. You might uncover that you were anything but an innocent bystander.

By allowing yourself to see the big picture, you can discover how you can do it better next time. In being totally honest with yourself about what happened and WHY it happened, the act of forgiveness automatically becomes more sincere and heartfelt.

6. The Decision


There will ultimately come a moment when you must decide whether or not to face the person who wronged you. Very often, this decision is clear-cut. That is, if it’s a relationship of legitimate value to you – one that you want to save or make better – meeting and forgiving the person in question is the obvious road to travel down.

If, however, the individual does not fit into this category, there is nothing wrong with forgiving him or her in your heart of hearts, and getting on with your life. Forgiveness is in essence a release – a letting go – for YOU, not the other side.

The fact that you’ve found it in yourself to unconditionally forgive a person is an incredibly uplifting and empowering experience in and of itself!

7. Forgiveness is a Process


We live in an age of instant gratification. We’re used to FAST fulfillment. But there’s no such thing as high-speed forgiveness. Genuine forgiveness takes time. It’s a healing process. And depending on the gravity of the transgression against you, it could take a while. Allow the 7 steps to forgiveness to unfold at a pace that’s right for you and what you want to accomplish.

Peace is possible, and you are on the road to it!

Wishing you the power to forgive and let go —

Aviva Engel

PS. The 7 steps to forgiveness take time to master, so be patient with yourself. Feel free to email me with any questions you may have!

 

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Home » Dharma Teachings

Dharma Talks   |   Forgiveness Practice   |  

Reconciliation Meditation   |   Dana

The act of forgiveness is a spiritual practice in and of itself.

Forgiveness practice acknowledges what you have done or what someone has done to you. By taking responsibility or acknowledging the act, you can move towards “letting go” rather than have it enmeshed as part of your identity. This does not mean that you won’t have regrets but rather that you are not imprisoned by those regrets.

Practicing forgiveness is something you do for your own sake, in order not to be locked in anger and fear. It’s crucial to understand that we are not necessarily forgiving “the act” but opening to forgiving the person.

If you haven’t forgiven yourself or others, it is hard to open your heart to loving-kindness. To meet hatred and loss with love and a generous heart is a most difficult practice.

​Standard Version

To those whom I may have caused harm, knowingly or unknowingly, through my thoughts, words and* actions,
I ask your forgiveness.

To those who may have caused me harm, knowingly or unknowingly, through their thoughts, words and actions,
I offer my forgiveness.

For any harm I may have caused myself, knowingly or unknowingly, through my thoughts, words, and actions,
I offer my forgiveness.

Extended Version

To those whom I may have caused harm, knowingly or unknowingly, through my thoughts, words and* actions
arising through greed, ill-will or delusions,
I ask your forgiveness.

To those who may have caused me harm, knowingly or unknowingly, through their thoughts, words and actions,
I offer my forgiveness, as best I am able.

For any harm I may have caused myself, knowingly or unknowingly, through my thoughts, words, and actions,
I offer my forgiveness.

 some people say “and”, others “or”. Keep it simple and vibrant for you. Substitute your own words if you like.

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