December 15, 2011 – DAY 15 | Forgiveness: I can hear you now: I thought you were writing on how to have a more productive New Year? I will be happy to tell you that I have not deviated from that plan. What most people don’t always realize is that unforgiveness is just as debilitating to a successful future as any of the other areas I write about.
The reality is that when you are unforgiving you transfer emotional energies toward something or someone. In many cases, those that you are unable to forgive don’t even realize that you are carrying these feelings about them. Forgiveness is a burden that will slow you down, wear you out, and if not careful can very well destroy you. What I have discovered is that it is easier to forgive someone else than it is to forgive yourself. Forgiveness is essential to clearing out and using mental space more effectively. Forgiveness is about making a decision that you are no longer going to let that person or situation rent space for free in your mind! While many feel that forgiving is about letting someone get away with something… that is actually far from the truth. Forgiveness is rarely about the offender and most always about you. Forgiving does not mean you forget, it just means you chose to no longer carry around the burden of it. Forgiving can be done very simply by starting to say I forgive _____or I forgive myself for ________. As many times as you pick that thought back up – put it back down quickly and repeat the statements. Keep reminding yourself that you’ve forgiven and keep moving. At some point you will have less and less a need to practice this.
Unforgiveness is a form of mental Bondage. It is time we broke those chains. For today’s exercise, write down any person, organization or situation to which you feel you cannot forgive. Look at the person and their offense and make a decision to no longer carry those feelings. And forgive them. I would also write down the areas you feel unable to forgive yourself. Start working on freeing yourself from the prison you have placed yourself in. There is no condemnation. Forgive… it is good for the soul!
Philip A Foster, MA is Founder/CEO of Maximum Change Inc. Elevating leaders and their organizations to the next level since 2005. Master Certified Coach, Philip A Foster, MA and his associates facilitate effective positive change by helping organizations, leaders and individuals in high demand — design and implement strategies that maximize focus and deliver results. Specializing in Organization and Strategic Leadership.