ShamanTalk Episode 73
Forgiveness is the intentional and voluntary process by which one who may initially feel “victimised,” changes feelings and attitude regarding a given offence, and overcomes negative emotions such as resentment and vengeance (however justified it might be).
Whether it’s a simple spat with your spouse or long-held resentment toward a family member or friend, unresolved conflict can go deeper than you may realize—it may be affecting your physical health. The good news: Studies have found that the act of forgiveness can reap huge rewards for your health, lowering the risk of heart attack; improving cholesterol levels and sleep; and reducing pain, blood pressure, and levels of anxiety, depression and stress. And research points to an increase in the forgiveness-health connection as you age.
Who hasn’t been hurt by the actions or words of another? Perhaps a parent repeatedly criticised you growing up, a colleague sabotaged a project or your partner had an affair. Or maybe you’ve had a traumatic experience, such as being physically or emotionally abused by someone close to you.
These wounds can leave you with lasting feelings of anger and bitterness — even vengeance.
But if you don’t practice forgiveness, you might be the one who pays most dearly. By embracing forgiveness, you can also embrace peace, hope, gratitude and joy.
In this week’s podcast, we consider how forgiveness can lead us down the path of physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.
Remember, forgiveness isn’t about pardoning others’ actions;
it’s about letting yourself off the emotional hook.
Activities & Journeys
- Journey with your guides to the Spirit of Forgiveness. Ask to be given a deeper understanding of forgiveness and what this might mean in your life.
- Choose a situation or person in your life who you feel it is time to forgive. Follow the recommendations in the podcast perhaps by starting a journal or chatting with a trusted friend:
- Recognise the value of forgiveness and how it can improve your life
- Identify what needs healing and who needs to be forgiven and for what.
- Consider joining a support group or seeing a counsellor.
- Choose to forgive the person who’s offended you.
- Move away from your role as victim. Release any control or power over your life that the offending person or situation had.
- Practice empathy. Try seeing the situation from the other person’s point of view.
- Ask yourself why he or she would behave in such a way. Perhaps you would have reacted similarly if you faced the same situation.
- Reflect on times you’ve hurt others and on those who’ve forgiven you.
- Write in a journal, chat to a friend or work with your Guides to gain insight into how you can move into forgiveness.
- Be aware that forgiveness is a process, and even small hurts may need to be revisited.
- Acknowledge your emotions about the harm done to you and how they affect your behaviour and work to release them.
- Forgiving yourself. Journey with your guides to the core of your anger. Ask to be shown what this does to your body, mind and soul. Ask for the energy of the anger (or other negative emotion) to be dissipated from your body.
After this Journey, commit to forgiving yourself and notice if this is easier. You can do this journey as many times as is necessary to overcome your negative emotions.
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