Tagged: “Helpful Forgiveness Hints”
It is very hard for me to act in a civil way with my roommate when I am angry. I am practicing forgiving, but I still can have a sharp tongue. Can you offer some suggestions for me?
Forgiving can begin with your thinking about the other person. Still there can be some anger left over. The keys are these: a) know you are still angry; b) use your strong will to resist harsh words that result from the feeling of anger; c) give yourself time to calm down; and d) you might want to practice forgiving your roommate for the new incident that sparked the new anger in you.
Parents can use teachable moments when watching films or reading stories. We have forgiveness education in schools in over 30 countries. Books on forgiveness, magazine articles, newspaper articles on forgiveness can engender a curiosity about what forgiveness is and is not. A key issue is to begin conversations deliberately focused on the moral virtue of forgiveness. I have observed that such deliberate conversations are rare. It is my hope that they become more common in families, schools, workplaces, and other areas of communities.
I work hard on forgiveness, but sometimes I get to a week in which I do not want to even think about it or what happened to me. During these times, what can I do to not feel guilty or uncomfortable about setting forgiveness aside?
Let us take an analogy here. Suppose you have a physical fitness regimen. Do you work out every week for an entire year or do you take some time off to refresh, to heal, to re-group? Physical trainers tell us to take some time off. It is good for us. Think of becoming forgivingly fit in the same way. Hard work is good, but we need some time off to refresh and re-group so that we come back to that work with renewed enthusiasm.
There is a difference between what forgiveness is (it is being good to those who are not good to you) and your motivation to forgive. There is nothing wrong with being good to another person so that you can emotionally heal. Here is a link to one of my essays at the Psychology Today website that gives you more information on this: 9 Purposes for Your Life When You Forgive.
I was hurt in a 5-year relationship and now I am hesitant to get into any other relationship. Does this lack of courage on my part suggest that I have not forgiven the one who hurt me?
The issue here seems to be one of a lack of trust. You may or may not have forgiven the one with whom you were in a relationship for the 5 years. Even if you have completely forgiven, you still may lack trust and this is not a sign of unforgiveness. It is a sign that you know hurt is possible when you commit to others. Forgiveness can help with taking the risk and at the same time your using common sense in the new relationship, along with sincere acts of trustworthiness by the other, should help to slowly create a trust with the new person.
Learn more at Forgiveness for Couples.