From birth, we grow and will encounter people or situations that will affect us in positive and negative ways.
As we mature, many of these experiences will have an impact on our perspective in all aspects of our lives. Some will be positive. Some will be negative. In most circumstances, the negative will be etched in our conscious and subconscious mind more than the positives.
We will tend to use these experiences to justify our behaviors in our adolescent and adult life. Many choices are influenced by these circumstances unconsciously, which leads to a cycle of discontentment, self-worthlessness, depression, low self-esteem, resentment, envy, misery, inability to be happy or joyous, and have a negative perspective of life in general.
At many times, we are unhappy and don’t know why.
Many tend to think that forgiveness is for the other person. There are many situations in which will feel that we have been wronged. Many times, we tend to neglect or remember times in which we were the ones committing the offense. Sometimes it may have been knowingly and other times not.
This is quite evident especially when we are placed in charge of care for others. This can be seen in parents, teachers, politicians, leaders, physicians and other providers, religious leaders, drivers, pet owners, and etc.
We are a society of interdependence. If we take this perspective, we are in need of forgiveness.
Healing begins with forgiveness.
The first one to forgive is yourself. This can be very difficult.
Forgiveness of self is a process. We are to learn to forgive ourselves and allow the past to remain in the past. Forgiving is not forgetting. In forgiveness, we learn from those past experiences. We learn to not be our own judge, jury, and executioner.
In many cases, we are most critical of ourselves. Until we conquer this obstacle on a personal level, we cannot truly begin to forgive another for their transgressions.
Forgiveness is essential for our overall health.
Forgiveness is essential for our emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical growth. Until we learn and implement forgiveness in our personal lives, we will continue to hinder our growth and health.
It was said by Pubilius Syrus, “how unhappy is he who cannot forgive himself.”
The quality of the life we live and relationships we develop are significantly impacted by our ability to forgive and move on from the past. We fight for so many things and others in our lives. Let us be our own hero. The past is in the past. The future has yet to come. All we have is the present.
Let us choose to make this time the best that it can be for us and those that we have in our lives.
Say Yes to your better self.
Kameelah Ellis, NP-C