Can You Really Forgive and Forget?

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The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naive forgive and forget; the wise forgive but do not forget. – Thomas Szasz

Why is it so hard to forgive?

I bet someone did something that ticked you off today. If it hasn’t already, it’s prepared to ruin your day. When someone wrongs us, why can’t we move on? These situations can live in our head rent free for a very long time! If the best thing we can do is let it go and move on, why don’t we?

Maybe we think we’re telling the other person ‘its ok’ what they did. We’re afraid we’ll release them to more poor behavior. When people go out of their way to hurt us, all we can think of is revenge. It can be so terrible that the thought of forgiving is impossible. Our ego can get in the way because we want to have the last laugh and win.

Can you forgive and really forget?

Forgiveness can be the gateway to a process of restoration in a relationship. Just because you’ve forgiven doesn’t mean the wound is healed. Forgiving and not forgetting is the first step to the healing process.

What if ‘I will never forget’ is keeping you from true forgiveness? How can you say you can forgive that person if you still harbor the feelings? Not forgetting is a slippery slope that can be an excuse to holding on to the hurt that you can hold over someone else’s head. That is manipulation and certainly not forgiveness.

Who is forgiveness really for?

Forgiving others does not release them, it releases us.  If you don’t forgive someone you might as well walk around with a massive ship anchor tied to your ankle. Too much ego drives our inability to forgive. For your own benefit let it go.

I did not forgive my dad for years after he passed. I kept holding on to the negative emotions from our relationship…but he wasn’t even alive! My ability to forgive him was so that I could move on in my current healthy relationships.

Forgiveness can be the hardest thing you can do. The good news everyone is forgivable for anything they do. It’s up to you!

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