Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Forgive and forget

Growing up, my mom's mantra was forgive and forget. When I had an argument with a sibling, friend, anyone, she made us kiss and make up! Yes we giggled and laughed, but we did it! That simple act held so many lessons.

The overall lesson is forgiveness, but within that big lesson are so many little lessons. The first is to be able to stop the fighting and look into each other's eyes and say your sorry. Secondly to take action to embrace the other person even when it didn't feel comfortable is a lesson in going beyond your feelings to do the right thing. It's an acknowledgement that the relationship with the other person is more important than being attached to your point of view or a negative feeling. It's a statement that you are in love and acceptance of the other person, and of yourself. Contrary to what some might think, it takes a strong person to do all of these things; a strong belief in yourself and your self-image.

As a life coach, I feel I need to say that it's important to be in touch with your feelings and to know when a relationship is harmful. If your relationship has gotten to the point where you are beginning to feel that you are in danger, then it's still possible to forgive, but rather than kissing and making up, you may need to walk away and then forget! First and foremost you need to take care of yourself and being in an abusive relationship is not taking care of yourself!

Forgiving is an act of opening yourself to trust the person you love one more time. It's hard to make yourself vulnerable. As you practice it more and more, it gets easier.

I'm learning from my parents with Alzheimers the art of forgetting! One day I did something that my dad wasn't so happy about and the next day he simply forgot about it. He had no hard feelings, didn't bring it up to hash over what happened and why. It's just gone, and each new day brings a new start. How wonderful to be able to do let it go, to forget it. It's one thing to say you forgive someone, but then are you able to let it go and not bring it up again? Are you able to simply forget about it? If you are, you are an amazing person.

Being in love and acceptance sounds so easy. As easy as being able to forgive and forget and to keep on loving and trusting in the goodness of the other person.

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