Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to forgive someone.
Other times the hardest thing to do is to forget.
Many times the hardest thing is to do is to forgive yourself and forget.
The funny thing is that forgiving and forgetting are both really important when it comes to trying to get on with your life, especially after it has been marred by controversy or tragedy.
What A Unique Concept: Forgive And Forget!
Have you ever met that person who just won’t let things go?
I know I’ve been around some of them. The smallest thing just sets them off. And, the least you could hope for is that they would be able to move on after blowing off steam.
It would be nice, but no, most of those who wallow in their own frustration just want to carry that venom with them wherever they go.
And that’s not all. They want to share it with everyone they come in contact with as well!
Isn’t that nice!
But seriously, that really is a tough way to live, isn’t it?
I can’t imagine carrying all that baggage with me everywhere I go, or even wanting to. For some people, however, it is just a way of life. They don’t know any better. Or, to be more accurate, they don’t think about it.
It’ sad that they don’t realize the absolute joy and freedom that forgiving and forgetting can bring to them.
If only they would give it a try.
I’m drinking some Poison – Would You Like Some?
One of my favorite sayings is that revenge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. No matter how hard you try, it just isn’t going to happen. It just doesn’t work that way.
Revenge is the overt act of trying to get back at someone for a real or perceived wrong.
Not forgiving is a more passive way of poisoning yourself, your life and your mind.
Holding on for dear life to negative thoughts and emotions can be like carrying poison around in big, huge jars. The only thing left to decide is trying to decide whether or not to drink it.
After a while those jars are going to get pretty heavy.
If you keep carrying around those many and varied poisons at the same time – you know, for your family, friends, work, etc. – the pressure and frustration most definitely is going to build up over time.
And in doing so it is going to waste that precious time away.
I’ve had times in my life where the burden of all kinds of things weighed heavy upon me, whether I wanted them to or not. Money, self-doubt, etc. I guess everyone goes through those types of situations. But when your there yourself, you think it you are alone.
But you’re not!
The truth is that if you’re living and breathing, you’re eventually going to be dealing with situations that may not go your way. The trick in dealing with those situations is to try to keep things in perspective.
Keeping It All In Perspective
Easier said than done, right?
Well, maybe not.
One neat trick that I have found that helps me to dump the drama, or detox, from these situations is by scheduling my downtime.
Here’s an example and how you may want to deal with it.
The day starts out pretty good. That is, until you actually open your eyes.
First thing that you realize is that over night your electricity went out in your home. You look at your alarm clock and it is blank.
That’s strange, you think. It has a backup battery. Then you remember that the mental note you made to yourself (you know, the one to replace that very backup battery during that last thunder storm) got lost in the shuffle.
Uh oh, you never did change the battery, did you?!?
You grab your watch off the nightstand only to realize your internal clock is not as good as you thought it was either.
You’re already an hour behind schedule and you haven’t even gotten out of bed yet!
You jump out of bed, get ready and rush out the door as quickly as you can while still half asleep.
But the drama doesn’t stop there: As your backing out of the driveway you hit the garbage can.
On your way to work there is an accident o the road that makes you even later.
Eventually you get to work, but you’re still fifteen minutes late for that important meeting on the new account.
New account! Ahhh!
Oh no, your briefcase is back at home and you forgot it in your rush.
I think that paints a pretty good picture, right?
You get the idea. The day just starts out bad and seems to be snowballing on you. It gets overwhelming so you do what any person would do . . . you start to try to blame the people and things you come in contact with, for your drama.
It makes sense, right?
The alarm clock is lousy.
People don’t know how to drive.
The meeting should have been scheduled later in the day.
You get it.
What an incredible amount of garbage to carry through the day. And each little bit just keeps adding up and weighing you down a little more until it is absolutely overwhelming.
So what is the solution?
Here’s a thought:
How about trying a little FORGIVENESS!
The electricity went out. OK, so what?
The battery died in the clock. OK, so what?
There was an accident and you were later to work than you might have otherwise been. OK, so what?
After you have blamed every possible inanimate object and every possible person, including yourself, what do you have left over?
Nothing but pain and frustration, right?
Does it ever make you feel any better?
I’d venture to say the natural byproduct of this type of behavior is nothing more than anger, ill will, and bad feelings.
How About Trying Something Different Next Time!
Now, as weird as it may seem, this time around how about trying some forgiveness:
Forgive the electric company.
Forgive the alarm clock.
Forgive (and care about) the person who had the accident.
Forgive the person who scheduled the meeting.
Most importantly, forgive yourself!
Now what do you have left?
A clean, fresh slate to address the rest of the day.
Just pure openness, focus and concentration.
Schedule That Downtime
To arrive at the point where you are starting fresh, the first thing you have to do is accept your anger and your situation. After that, you have to decide how long you actually want to feel that way.
Believe it or not, you do have a choice.
You just have to decide that you want to be in control of your life and that you don’t just want to go on auto-pilot any more.
It is important that you give yourself a chance to feel your feelings, whether it takes a minute, an hour or even longer.
But you get to decide!
And once you have decided, stick to it.
When that time comes around just tell yourself you are done. Say to yourself:
I forgive you or I forgive them or I forgive it or, most importantly, I forgive me!
Then just let it sink in. Once you do you can move on with a clear head and a clear conscience!
The process is amazingly simple, but it works.
Think about it.
Give it a try. . . And let me know what you think.