Arriving in the space of wanting to not only forgive others but also yourself is hard to process. Forgiveness takes time. This does not have to be a magnificent or mind-blowing experience; it can be in small daily wins. Forgiveness is a gift that you give yourself through not allowing negativity to cloud your mind.
This blog will explore forgiveness, and how it impacts you daily, and then discuss how Restoration Recovery can assist with not only forgiving others but yourself.
Forgiveness and Recovery: What Is the Connection?
The idea of forgiveness is easy to understand but difficult to process. In addition, it asks us to accept things for what they are, remember that the past is the past, and empathize with the moment. This is hard for most people as humans are often quick to be emotional. At times, people are not thinking rationally, and therefore, forgiveness is not the first thing that they are thinking about.
Staying in the past only brings resentment and bitterness to the surface. In treatment, you were taught to practice healthy coping skills to find your happiness in daily wins. Recovery is your new normal. Therefore, it is important to forgive the past version of yourself so that you can accept this new present self.
Forgiveness is a key component in recovery. It allows you to let go of the old version of yourself and hang onto the new person that you are. Additionally, it sets you free from negative concepts that you engaged in or the false expectations that you had of yourself and/or others. Forgiveness allows the healing to begin and love to spread within your life.
Consider the following key daily wins toward forgiveness.
#1. Daily Wins of Practicing Empathy
Empathy is not the understanding of someone else’s issues because you have experienced it too. Practicing empathy is about the moment when you listen to a person’s experience and understand why they are experiencing the situation from their perspective.
The next time someone tells you about an experience, practice listening. Do not assume that you know exactly what is going on. Take the time to be present without any judgment. Your job is not to fix the problem, just to be present in the moment.
#2. Daily Wins in Being Kind to Yourself and Others
There has been a lot of attention on the word “kind.” You see that word on t-shirts, plaques, ornaments, wall art, and many other things. What does it mean to be kind? Kindness comes in all shapes and sizes. This includes, for example, walking an elderly person across the street to pick up a piece of trash off the floor. Both are ways to practice kindness in big and small ways.
You have been through a lot and owe it to yourself to put yourself first. There is no better time than today to start being kind to yourself and others.
#3. Daily Wins With Letting It Go
Stop thinking about the event over and over. You cannot change what happened in the past. What you can do is accept it and work through your feelings associated with the event. Spending energy thinking about what happened does not change anything about it. You have already spent many hours dissecting all the details and what could be different.
Life will happen on life’s terms whether you like it or not. If you find that you are having a hard time letting things go, an individual therapist at Restoration Recovery may be able to help you.
#4. Daily Wins With Practicing Gratitude
Gratitude is important no matter where you are in your recovery. Spending time with gratitude can turn a negative experience into a positive thought process. Gratitude clears the path for forgiveness to have a place to stay.
Practicing gratitude could be just remembering something small that you are grateful for or taking time before you go to bed and writing five things that you are grateful for.
There are many benefits of practicing gratitude. One of those benefits is decreasing stress and feeling better. Research shows that practicing gratitude for one of your daily wins can improve physical and mental health.
#5. Daily Wins by Journalling
Sometimes all you need is a fresh piece of paper and a pen to process forgiveness. It may be difficult to voice your emotions or how you feel about yourself, but journaling can provide an array of benefits to your process. Journaling provides you with a non-judgmental space to process your emotions and reduces stress and anxiety. Keep in mind that the benefits depend on how dedicated you are to writing and being honest about your feelings.
Journaling can increase your creativity too. You can choose to use bright-colored pens or draw your feelings. This is your space to do whatever you want and express feelings/emotions however you desire.
Thinking about forgiveness brings memories to the surface, including thinking about people from the past and situations that perhaps you have yet to process. Forgiveness is hard because shame and guilt may surface. You may have thought about forgiveness; however, you may have put it aside because of the difficult feelings associated with it. You may be thinking that you do not want to feel emotions that would trigger your sobriety. At Restoration Recovery, we understand such thoughts and provide emphatic positive regard. We will provide a space of love and kindness to your individual needs. If you or someone you know is struggling, give us a call at (888) 290-0925 today!