Forgiving someone after they have hurt or betrayed you can seem impossible, especially when the wound is new. But the truth is that holding a grudge against someone is really only hurting one person — you. Studies show that forgiveness can reduce stress and the negative side effects that come along with it. Forgiveness can be extremely difficult, and it can take time, but forgiveness is also healing, in more ways than one.
1. You Can Finally Stop Thinking About It
When you hold onto anger, it’s constantly in your body and your mind. Even if you think you’ve pushed the situation to the back of your mind, chances are that it’s still affecting your daily life and the decisions you make. You may never forget the feeling of being hurt or betrayed, but once you decide to let go of the pain, you’ll find that you aren’t constantly thinking about it anymore. You may have learned a tough lesson that will stay with you, but choosing to forgive will free your mind and the pain will no longer have power over you.
2. You’ll Get a Fresh Start
If someone close to you was the cause of your pain, it may be time to re-evaluate your relationship. The person may deserve a second chance, or it might be time to cut him or her out of your life. Make a decision based on what’s best for you. Either way, finding it in your heart to forgive will allow you to create a fresh start. Instead of feeling weighed down by the pain, use your experience to motivate you in some way. Forgiveness isn’t a sign of weakness. It doesn’t mean that you’re giving up or giving in. Forgiveness is a sign of strength. It means that you’ve decided to rise above a tough situation, and choose happiness over pain. Forgiveness can allow you to put the past behind you, and have a fresh start.
3. You Have More Room to Be Happy
Pain, anger and bitterness can only weigh you down. While having these feelings initially may be hard to control or overcome, you will eventually have to make the choice to forgive in order to heal. Once you get rid of all of the negative things you’ve been feeling, you’ll open yourself up to happiness. Forgiveness will allow you to finally find peace. When someone hurts or betrays you, that person is trying to steal something from you — your happiness. Instead of holding a grudge or trying to get even, make a decision to forgive, instead of allowing someone else to control your happiness.
Choosing to be positive, to be the bigger person and to move on with your life can be difficult, but it’s worth it. Every second you spend being angry, bitter or wanting revenge is a waste of time. Moving on with your life, healing and finding peace through forgiveness is a choice that’s yours to make, and it’s a big one. Forgiveness is about making a decision to let go of your pain, and find your happiness again.
h/t: the spirit science