As you go on in life, people and their words or actions will have an impact on you. In this journey, some people may hurt you, knowingly or unknowingly and some people may help you grow and be a better person.

Forgiving a person for hurting you may seem like one of the toughest things you have to do but in truth, forgiveness can be quite liberating. Holding on to a grudge or carrying hatred towards another person affects us more than it does them. Resentment, bitterness and anger builds negativity in a person’s mind and can greatly affect our mental health. In fact, it takes more effort to remain unforgiving. Forgiving another for their mistakes can help you grow as a person and take away some of the emotional baggage.

How do you forgive someone who has done something unforgivable? The first step to forgiving a person is to take away the power of that person’s actions or words on us. When you decide that nothing or no one can take away your happiness or peace of mind, their actions and words will no longer seem to affect you.

Secondly, analyse your relationship with the person. Is it mostly good or mostly bad? Does that person put you down often or make you happy most of the time? Do you want that person to be in your life? If the relationship is mostly good, if he/she makes you happy most of the time and if you want that person to be part of your life, then forgiveness becomes easier.

Forgiving someone is only the first step in improving your relationship. Be open about your feelings to the other person. Let them know how they have hurt you without it leading to a blame game. Talk to each other and create boundaries that are acceptable to both. Be grateful that you have each other in your lives. Remember that your actions have an impact on others as well. No matter how much you try, you may still end up hurting someone unintentionally. So, would you not want them to forgive you as well?

Thirdly, try to see things from their perspective. Did they have a hard life? Did their life so far influence them to do or say the things they did? Can you feel sorry for them? Did they mean to hurt you? Try not to judge them for their one action and you will know what to do. If none of these reasons seem to help you to forgive them, do it for yourself. Do it to free yourself. Do it for your own peace of mind.

Forgiveness is beautiful because the hate or grudge that was weighing you down will be lifted from you. However, if you feel that a person is toxic or creating negativity inside you, then you need to remove them from your life. But first, forgive them. They may try to gaslight you and make you doubt yourself but try not to let it affect you. Instead of dwelling on the bad times or negative thoughts, try to focus on the good times you have had together and of all the good qualities they have, and let them go.

Forgive yourself if you have made mistakes. Everybody makes mistakes. Life is a learning experience. Learn to forgive yourself and move on to better spaces by not being hard on yourself. Remember that every person has good in them. Nobody is all bad. Be grateful for the good things and let go of the bad ones. Do not lean on somebody else to make you happy all time. Remind yourself that it is your job to make you happy.

Article by
Salma Jennath