This post forms part of the A-Z of Self-Care for Busy Parents series. If you missed the introductory post you can read it here.

If theres one thing the human race is good at, its holding on to resentment and anger. Whether it’s a serious betrayal or as simple as being cut up at a junction, we had a tendency to play the situation over and over in our minds, getting angrier and more hurt in the process. But what’s the point? All we are really doing is hurting ourselves over and over again.

Holding on to resentment not only has a negative impact on our mental health, but the increased stress levels have a direct affect on our physical wellbeing as well. If we really want to take better care of ourselves, we need to work on forgiveness of others and of ourselves

“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” Buddha

Holding on to resentment not only has a negative impact on our mental health, but the increased stress levels have a direct affect on our physical wellbeing as well. And it’s not only other’s we get angry with. We also have a tendency to get angry with ourselves for all the little things we think we do wrong.

If we really want to take better care of ourselves, we need to work on forgiveness of others and of ourselves. It’s worth noting that forgiveness doesn’t mean we weren’t wronged, it doesn’t mean we should forget, it simply means letting go of the negative feelings associated with the event so that we can move forward with our lives from a place of positivity.

Forgiving Others

It can be easy to say you should forgive and move on, but how? Obviously, the bigger the hurt the harder it is to forgive, but it is possible.

  • Try putting yourself in the other person’s shoes, perhaps they were going through something of their own that caused them to act out of character, perhaps you misunderstood their intention.
  • Think back to a time you made a mistake and needed forgiveness.
  • Acknowledge that we are all human and we all make mistakes.
  • Write out all your feelings and then burn the paper.
  • Talk to someone. Sometimes we just want to be heard and once we have vented we are able to let go and move forward.
  • Remember that forgiving is more about bringing you peace of mind than them.

Forgiving Ourselves

Mom-guilt is such a common phrase these days that many of us just accept it as a normal part of life. But it’s not. We need to stop berating ourselves for every single thing we think we may have done wrong. Most of the time it’s less about having done it wrong and more about not having done it the way someone else would. We are constantly comparing ourselves to others and it needs to stop.

  • Realise that nobody is perfect and everyone makes mistakes.
  • Treat yourself as you would your best friend.
  • If you have done something to hurt another person, whether intentional or not, apologise so that you can both move on.
  • Shift your focus onto all of the things you have done right; the things you are proud of.

This week, when you find yourself playing scenarios over and over in your head, stop. Take a few deep breaths and focus on forgiveness. Let go of the little things and work through the big, so that you can ditch the negativity and the stress and anger it brings and move forward.

Need more tips for self-care? Don’t want to miss the rest of the series? Enter your details in the box below to receive it in your inbox every week. And remember to bookmark the introductory post (here), the links to each new post will be added on to there as they are published.

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10 thoughts on “The Art of Forgiveness

  1. I find forgiveness really hard. I think one thing I recently learned was just because you’re forgiving someone that has wronged you it doesn’t mean what they did to you was any less hurtful. It’s more about accepting that it’s there issue, and that forgiving them lets you go from it all. I mean, I was writing down a list of all the people to forgive and with my ex being the person that wronged me so much it was so tough. A really emotionally draining thing to do but a hurdle I’m glad I hobbled over. #FamilyFun

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 6:41 am
  2. Great tips. I find it hard to forgive people but equally, it takes a lot for me to really fall out with someone. #FamilyFunLinky

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 9:24 am
  3. Oh I’m such a one for harbouring what people have done to me or having my actions churning around my head and reliving things! This is such great advice….just let it go!#familyfun

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 2:28 pm
  4. Dave finds letting things go really easy. I’ve learnt a bit from him how to but it is so hard. My current one is I’d quite like a thanks for having done the washing up that he normally does while I put the kids to bed. I’ve done both recently and I’d quite like it acknowledged!
    Karen | TwoTinyHands recently posted…The Letter G #FamilyFunLinky #ABC123ChallengeMy Profile

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 3:24 pm
  5. My folks know what it’s like to be wronged and find it hard to forgive the individual, it made them angry for years but thankfully they’ve moved on a bit now and it makes them feel bad less and less each year x It is extremely hard to let go sometimes x
    Dawn and Bella recently posted…My fantasy world with Schleich!My Profile

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 3:44 pm
  6. Forgiving others is for your own mental health. I try to do that just to let it go! #familyfun
    Tracy Albiero recently posted…Syrup boil off…My Profile

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 4:23 pm
  7. Forgiveness is a big thing in our family. I have found since having kids forgiveness comes easier to me. I will always forgive them no matter what. I don’t have many times when I fall out with anyone, but I do always forgive although that might not mean I will trust again… #familyfun
    Kirsty recently posted…Homemade BreadsticksMy Profile

    Posted on 19 March, 2018 at 9:09 pm
  8. Forgiveness is so powerful and can clear up so much stuff for yourself and others so quickly. Powerful post and one I will return to and yes so important to forgive ourselves too as nobody is perfect after all #FamilyFun
    Kate recently posted…A Beginners Guide To Skiing In The French AlpsMy Profile

    Posted on 21 March, 2018 at 11:17 pm
  9. I have gone through this journey of forgiving others and forgiving myself. It’s an ongoing process though. As you said, even something as simple as getting cut off at an intersection can rile me up for an entire day. I have learned how to calm myself but there are still days when it’s harder than others. I’ve begun listening to a mediation in the car while driving (as driving can really stress me out sometimes). It helps a great deal. Thanks so much for sharing this with us! and thanks for hosting #FamilyFunLinky
    Michelle Kellogg recently posted…Celebrating Women’s History Month with These Amazing HeroesMy Profile

    Posted on 25 March, 2018 at 2:57 pm
  10. Reading this brought up a number of experiences where people have wronged me and I’m struggling to let it go. #FamilyFunLinky
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    Posted on 25 March, 2018 at 8:50 pm