Forgiveness - How Important is it As the End Goal?

Forgiveness - How Important is it As the End Goal?

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As a counselor and hypnotherapist, I often work with people who have been damaged by another person's actions, some more seriously than others. Because each person is an individual, one person may well be affected by something that another person would be able to shrug off and disregard. Bullying can sometimes come into this category as often bullying escalates when the bully sees how distressed the victim is. They will typically pick on someone who is vulnerable and afraid.

I have also worked a lot with abuse and with anger management situations. Whatever the clients' situation entailed, and their experience of it, I find that the most important first stage is to help the client let go of the hurt and emotion that is felt towards the perpetrator in order to facilitate moving on and recovering. This then enables them to start living their life again. Forgiveness is a final choice, an optional extra.

When someone has been hurt or damaged by another person they can often get caught up in a loop of pain and frustration. That loop can become self-destructive as it often becomes a negative pattern of behavior in their life. An example of this is abuse: often victims or survivors of abuse struggle in forming relationships. They may have issues about trusting others, anger management difficulties, or struggle with perceived criticism and rejection. These patterns evolve over time as a means of protecting or safeguarding them from any potential further pain. The problem is that the person being most damaged by this repetitive pattern is themselves.

It can be hard for us to appreciate that we maintain our own reality by our actions and attitudes. By treating other people with suspicion or wariness we often prompt that behavior in the people we meet. Just think about how others treat us - we are nicer and more relaxed with the people who are friendly and pleasant towards us and more wary or cautious of people who seem to be uneasy or a little distant.

However, improving and healing a protective negative outer shell does not necessarily mean forgiving the other person. The first step is to acknowledge that that kind of baggage is tough to carry around and really benefits from being consigned to the past, where it belongs. Often I will ask my clients how long it is since they were hurt or damaged by the other person. Many times the answer is 'years ago. And yet the harm is being repeated over and over again, every time the defenses come up or the anger surfaces in an inappropriate way.

Working to heal these responses and reactions often results in a person feeling that a weight has been lifted off them. That can sometimes be a little unnerving at first, as the feelings have been there for such a long time. However, gradually getting used to trusting people, becoming confident about oneself and one's own opinions can enable the real person to come to the forefront again and blossom.

It is also amazing how many people say at this stage of their treatment that they learned a lot from their past difficult experiences. They come to realize that they are more tolerant and understanding of others, they have greater empathy and insight and appreciate the good things in life so much more. A tough way to have learned those things, but also a positive way of looking at and feeling about something that has happened and cannot be made to have not happened. Moving on is necessary. Forgiveness is an optional extra.


For more information and help visit http://www.lifestyletherapy.net

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Susan_Leigh/399535

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Susan Leigh

I am a lifestyle therapist and expert in hypnotherapy, and personal counseling. I am also registered with the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC) and a member of the College of Medicine. A frequent media contributor and writer of 3 books ('Dealing with Stress, Managing its Impact', '101 Days of Inspiration #tipoftheday' and 'Dealing with Death, Coping with the Pain', all on Amazon & with easy to read sections, tips and ideas to help you feel more positive about your life.)


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