Forgiving and Forgetting

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Do you, or someone you know, become easily offended or hold grudges?

This can be a very difficult way to live. These feelings usually arise because we have expectations that others will behave in a certain way, or because we are taking things personally.

If a friend does not return a call right away, or someone at the office neglects to greet us in the morning we set a negative process in motion if we start feeling angry or hurt. If someone forgets our birthday, or is having a grumpy day, it solves nothing to lay a guilt trip on them for disappointing us.

In truth, when we take offence, it is because we are judging the behavior of another. We do not know the true reason for their behavior, but we assume it is because we are not important to them, they do not care about us, or they wanted to hurt us. Most likely these assumptions are false. However, once established, the mind begins to seek other examples of behaviors that support those assumptions.

We are, in effect, assuming the worst about the other. This is the polar opposite of unconditional acceptance, and seeing the best in others. It is ego-generated thinking, and makes us co-dependent: needing the approval, support, validation, attention or love from others in order to feel good about ourselves.

It also makes it hard for others to be around us: they feel like they are walking on eggshells. No one wants to baby sit our feelings. That is our job. Even if someone is behaving negatively towards us, the best thing is to just ignore it.

Our happiness is our own responsibility. We are happier when we forgive, let the negatives go, and continue to be kind, generous, loving and caring, regardless of the behavior of others.

Copyright © Gwen Randall-Young, All Rights Reserved. Contact us if you would like permission to reprint.

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Mood Therapy

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