“Forgiveness is the final form of love.” -- Reinhold Niebuhr
Have you ever thought of forgiveness as a healing tool? While it may not be as obvious as a healthy diet and regular workout, practicing regular forgiveness (of yourself and others) can be an immensely powerful means of sculpting a more empowered and happy life.
But you might be thinking (or even screaming) to yourself, what's so empowering about forgiveness? Why would anyone forgive their childhood bully, homophobic co-worker or relative, or cheating boyfriend? Isn't that just weakness, if not downright stupid?
No less an authority than renowned life coach and OWN's Fix Your Life star Iyanla Vanzant says forgiveness is NOT an open invitation to be a doormat.
“It doesn’t mean you tolerate bad behavior,” Iyanla says in a recent interview with Ebony. “Forgiveness isn’t for the other person. It is for you. It clears the energy of your heart and raises your vibration.”
In her book, Forgiveness: 21 Days to Forgive Everyone For Everything, Iyanla writes that "when you know how to forgive, you eliminate excess mental and emotional weight that keeps you stuck in repetitive situations, circumstances, and experiences that are not healthy or productive."
Translation: Any life patterns that include numerous dead end jobs, dysfunctional relatonships and self-destructive behavior might be just be related to non-forgiveness.
If you're feeling stuck or powerless or angry, pondering forgivness might be worth a few minutes of your time. Do you have someone to forgive (maybe that person you see in the mirror every day?), so you can live with more freedom, clarity and energy? Of course, there's no exact blueprint to this practice or experience, but using this Iyanla forgiveness mantras can be a good start: "I forgive. I am forgiven. I am forgiving. I am forgivable."
Do you consider forgiveness an essential part of mental and spiritual well-being? Leave your comments and discuss!