How much resentment are you clinging to?
I recently had a conversation with a colleague about co-creating my parents’ final chapters.
We shared similar experiences of repeated socialized trauma.
I spoke on actively working to forgive the very people who were the cause of it and her response was one of admiration.
Her formative years experience still felt fresh. And, though she was intrigued by the notion, was neither open nor willing to embark upon such a journey.
I get it. The work of forgiveness is not for the faint of heart.
There’s an adage in religious and spiritual circles that states that to be forgiven, one must forgive. Statements like these “sound” lovely. The practice is neither quick, linear, nor simple.
“I forgave them for” is often followed by the word “but.” It shows resentment is still alive and the concept an intellectual one.
Forgiveness happens at a heart level.
You’ll know you’ve truly forgiven when your “but” is replaced with an “and.” The resentment, with an unshakable sense of Peace.
The process of forgiving my biological family began about 30 years ago with a list of grievances. Tears dropping on the paper, I wrote page after page of “I forgive you for’s”. From there, I moved into the long process of shedding myself as victim, declaring I would not take any of the pain with me to the grave. From there, I entered the next phase of work of redefining what it meant to be in relationship with them. Renewed, on my terms, lovingly and peacefully, I’ve now come full circle.
You are always free to let the relationship go.
Supported along the way by mentors, therapists and coaches, I honored my level of emotional maturity and development, my readiness and willingness. Through trial and error I learned invaluable lessons.
Those lessons allowed me to step back into my the family fold as a peaceful Leader, bringing siblings together for a common cause in service of the best course of action for my parents.
Frederic Luskin, director of the Stanford Forgiveness Project, states there are 5 aspects inherent in forgiveness. As it turns out, forgiveness…
1. …is a learnable skill.
2. …benefits the forgiver, not the offender
3. …is an opportunity to assume control over a situation and reassert personal power
4. …is an action that enables one to take ownership of personal feelings
5. …is an opportunity for personal healing
As a relationship coach, these aspects are exciting.
I’ve always stated that how you do relationship with family of origin, is how you show up in all of your relationships. If your current relationships are wonky, it’s imperative you do the work of relational maturation.
There are 86,400 seconds in a day. How will you choose to spend them? Stroking your grievances or peace through forgiveness?
If you need support, Let’s talk. To schedule your complimentary Discovery Session click here now. Looking forward to supporting you in your next forgiveness steps.