How to consider forgiving someone who hurt you
People that don’t forgive carry a heavy burden. Not forgiving has been linked to poor mental health, more illness, and more difficult relationships. People that hold on to grudges with their spouses are like to split and get divorced.
On the other hand, forgiveness reinforces the other side of the spectrum. Forgiving people is related to higher levels of well being, better health and stronger relationships. It has been proven to lower stress, anxiety, and depression.
Maybe you have considered forgiving someone but you are feeling unsure. You want to release your past but where do you start?
A proven forgiveness strategy is to change your view about the perpetrator. See the person that hurt you differently. Consider seeing the person as a child. Nobody was born an aggressor or bully. We are all born innocent. Life events shaped the person that hurt you and who they have become.
You can start with visualization. Imagine how he/she looked like a child. Think about the things that happen to that child. See if you can forgive the child.
“Forgiveness allows us access to the loving emotions that can lie buried beneath grievances and grudges.”
– Fred Luskin
Can you forgive the child?