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  • Writer's pictureTraci Kanaan

The Power of Forgiveness

Working as a hypnotist pretty much means I'll never have a dull day of work ever again. My clients spill their guts to me about injustices in their past, and often times those guts include someone who has wronged my client. Whatever that person did, it affected their life significantly and they're having a lot of trouble forgiving that person what they did, or forgiving themselves for allowing that person to do that to them. Finding peace in forgiving that person is a huge step towards healing yourself.

Forgiveness is a powerful act. According to scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health, forgiveness can set you free from negative emotions so you can move forward with your life. To achieve your goals, you need to forgive others who hurt you or stand in your way. You also need to forgive yourself for your mistakes and failures.

Researchers at Stanford University have found that forgiveness helps reduce anger and improves your understanding of difficult situations. When you have a better understanding of why you are angry, forgiveness allows you to harness stronger emotional and mental power.

Emotional Power

The emotional power of forgiveness is experienced in:

• Decreased Depression

• Reduced Anxiety

• Lower Risk for Substance Abuse

• Increased Self-Esteem

Being angry is a negative emotion. If you don’t practice forgiveness, the anger you feel can affect every area of your life. Anger creates a negative mindset where you may begin to see every situation as potentially negative or feel that everyone is trying to hurt or harm you.

This negative mindset can lead to depression as your view of the world becomes hostile and threatening. You may begin to feel anxious about how other people will treat you or about finding a way to reach your goals. If you don’t forgive yourself for your mistakes, the anger, shame, and guilt you feel raises your risk for substance abuse.

Forgiveness allows you to release all those negative feelings. The emotional power of forgiveness increases your compassion, gratitude, and kindness. These positive emotions improve your self-esteem. Knowing that you have forgiven yourself and others improves your mindset, shows your character, and allows you to move forward in life.

Mental Power

The mental power of forgiveness is experienced in:

• Positive Potential

• Moving Forward

• Increased Resilience

• Improved Life Satisfaction

Lack of forgiveness makes you see things in a negative way. When you practice forgiveness, you see the positive potential of situations instead. If you’re angry and upset with yourself and others because you haven’t practiced forgiveness, you view situations as obstacles that you can’t overcome.

You won’t trust yourself or others to do the right thing, help, or work to achieve something better. Forgiveness changes your view, so you see opportunity and positive potential in difficult situations. Instead of obstacles, you see challenges that you can face and the potential for success.

When you don’t practice forgiveness, you don’t accept the reality of a situation. Anger clouds your judgment, causing poor planning and decisions. It’s impossible to move forward in life if you are caught in the anger of the past. Forgiveness allows you to change your mindset so you can face the future with confidence.

Forgiveness helps you separate minor annoyances, imagined slights, and small setbacks from the real challenges and problems you face. When you see issues and challenges clearly, you increase your resilience to setbacks.

But if you’re always angry and upset with yourself and others, life becomes nothing more than a series of disappointments and frustrations. When you think everything in life is difficult, you become less resilient and have more trouble reaching your goals.

While satisfaction with life may feel like an emotion, it is also a mental exercise of placing value and worth on your circumstances. If you don’t practice forgiveness, you will have trouble determining what truly matters in your life and what doesn’t. Anger focusses your thoughts and energy on things that go wrong.

Forgiveness allows you to move past those setbacks, acknowledge the positive things in your life, and improves your overall satisfaction with yourself and your life.

The power of forgiveness lies in the improvements to your emotional and mental wellbeing that forgiveness provides. Forgiveness helps you move forward in your life so you can achieve your goals and continue living your best life.

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