Is it possible to forgive and forget?

While you may not be able to forget the pain that someone or something has caused you, it is possible to forgive. Forgiveness is essential for your own growth and evolution as a person, and helpful to the person who has harmed you as well. Learn about what forgiveness really means, and how to get to the point of forgiveness so that you can bring more happiness into your life as a result.

What Is Forgiveness?

  • The ability to fully accept someone’s wrongdoing; to let go of anger, resentment, and hate; to say goodbye to feelings of negativity and say hello to a lighter and happier way of being.

Set Your Intention for Anyone Who Has Harmed You

  • Most people spend years holding onto past hurts and pains, and seeking out revenge against those who have hurt them, betrayed them or scorned them.
  • Focus positively on your intention—putting aside the pain and anger, what, deep down, do you wish for them?
    • It could be that you want them to learn from their own mistakes, or to find solace.
  • Focus on a positive thought in the process of forgiveness—your intention for that person who hurt you—and you’ll speed up the forgiveness process as a result.
  • Repeat this affirmation: “I accept what has been done. I release you from my life now.”

Be Grateful for What He/She Brought into Your Life

  • Beneath the pain, there’s always a life lesson that plays out—look for what he/she taught you, and begin to focus on that lesson instead of the pain of the memory.
  • After being sexually assaulted, the lesson could be to be more selective of whom you trust and whom you don’t, or to listen to your intuition more closely and act on it when something “just doesn’t feel right about someone.”

He/She Is Your Teacher

  • Everyone and everything is a lesson, which means that the hardest lessons bring about the toughest teachers.
  • Need to forgive a parent, sibling or ex-spouse? Focus on what they taught you. Did they teach you to be true to yourself (when you weren’t), or that you stopped believing in yourself or taking care of yourself when you were in a relationship with them?
  • Everything is a lesson to be learned—when you know how to be better, you do better in life and come out stronger.

Practice the Light Switch of Resentment and Jealousy

  • Visualizing a light switch is effective, and can be used any time to seek out forgiveness.
  • When thoughts of anger pop in, close your eyes and imagine that light switch in the “off” position. Now imagine turning the light switch to “on,” and fix that negative thought to be something positive about the person, or what he/she contributed to your life in a good way.
  • Open your eyes, and feel better about yourself and the choices you’ve made!

Forgiveness isn’t something that can happen overnight, but when you commit to having a positive attitude, saying prayers of gratitude and accepting what they’ve done (instead of running from the reality of it), you will reach a point of forgiveness. Use these suggestions to get you there as quickly as you are ready for it.

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