Lighten-up with Forgiveness

Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is  to forgive yourself.  Small or big, humans tend to hold on to the upsets we feel baddest about.  Guilt is one of the heaviest burdens that we bear.

When someone alarms, disappoints or harms you, it can be very hard to forgive them and move on.  The simplest annoyances can replay in our heads for hours, weeks or years after they occur.

When you have been deeply offended by someone, it’s especially hard to imagine forgiving them.  However, forgiving is the greatest gift you can give yourself.  Forgiveness has very little to do with the person who hurt you.  Forgiveness is all about creating your own peace of mind and nobody else’s.  When you forgive someone else, you lighten your own load of emotional baggage.  The Buddhists call this detachment.  When you feel angry or hurt by someone, you are emotionally ‘attached’ to them.  When you forgive, you are no longer attached.  You become detached and free of the emotional burden.

I regularly practice detachment.  Today, for example, a pharmacist refused to provide me with a final tube of medication because the prescription for the three tubes of cream, written three years earlier, had expired.  Though I bought the second tube of cream just months earlier, the pharmacist said the prescription, not the cream, expired three years from the date it was written.  In my mind, this made no sense.  My doctor had instructed me to simply use the cream as needed.  Annoyed that my life had become just a little more complicated, I held onto my anger and replayed the scenario in my head as I walked home.  However, just half a block from the drugstore, I caught myself.  Instead of ‘holding on’ I decided to ‘let go’ and detach from the pharmacist.  She hadn’t been the one who was suffering.  I was – over a silly little thing like that!

How do you let go?

To detach and let go, put yourself in the present moment.  Focus on any task at hand, such as walking, driving, or enjoying the day.  In this way, you can quickly forget whatever it was you were holding onto.  The memory of my experience with the pharmacist only comes to mind now because I stumbled into a wonderful meditation on forgiveness.

Click on this link then page down to ‘Forgiveness Meditation‘ by TMI together with Peter Russell.  Enjoy!