So, how to let go of all those past offences that still keep on bothering us?
I believe the breathing technique is just like a band aid, it helps at that immediate moment, but it does not provide a long term solution.
the pain originated in all these grievances
as backpacks full of rocks we carry on our back daily.
They slow us down, steal our energy, divert our focus – we need to get rid of them.
We must learn to leave our bags behind.
Before we start complaining about how badly some others have treated us, let’s take a look at ourselves from an outsider’s perspective. How many times have we deliberately or accidentally hurt others? With the tone of our voice, with a degrading remark, by not listening carefully to them.
Maybe it is time to reconsider our “greatness”, and start planning to ask for their forgiveness. A simple “I am sorry for what I said the other day” would do.
We might be surprised what changes it can bring in them!
Recognise: we again changed how we react – we may have left the scene of confrontation feeling victorious, this was the “norm”, but now we humble ourselves and admit we were wrong.
How would it feel if someone did this to us –
asking for our forgiveness for their wrongdoings?
Of course, a positive answer for our intention to gain forgiveness is not expected.
We should never believe that everyone will forgive us everything, it’s just simply not the case. However, the good news is that
we did our part in seeking reconciliation and restoration,
and it’s now their turn. Which means, we did what we could, and
now we can let it go.
We can leave behind our guilt about those offences we committed against others. This was another backpack 😉. We can leave this one because
it is their choice whether they forgive us or not.
And if they choose not to forgive us, it’s their decision with its own consequences: they are going to carry their own backpack containing their own offences.
So, how to deal with our own offences backpack, how to leave it on the kerb?
Forgiving those who have hurt us, even if they do not ask for forgiveness. For our own sake!
It our choice to forgive or not, but when we forgive, we can leave the extra weight and pain we are carrying behind.
Forgiveness is a decision, not a feeling.
When we declare that we forgive, we make the first step to re-write our attitude towards that situation and that person. As it is rooted deep, it will take time to alter our instant reactions.
Old attitudes will try to sneak back at least a few times, demanding attention and the refocussing on the pain we suffered when we were hurt. Now, we can simply reject this desire by repeating to ourselves “but I have forgiven”.
Although it is a process, the time will come when we do feel forgiveness: the relief of not carrying the backpack of stones, the feeling of freedom from pain, guilt and resentment.
The most beautiful part of it is that
we do not need them to forgive them.
We do not need to tell them, we talk to ourselves: it is an inner process within us.
And because of this we can deal with the pain we suffered from those who have already died, or who we are no longer in contact with.
We just shout out our decision to forgive, and then stick to it. It will bring us joy.
Check out where you have started off: Let’s build resilience!