If your blood is still pumping through your veins, you very likely have some forgiving to do. When you truly forgive, you serve yourself much more than you serve the person you are forgiving. What I mean here is this. Forgiveness is great for the other person, but it's absolutely critical for us. We don't really move on with our lives until we fully and completely forgive. Unfortunately for some, they live their entire lives in a state of anger and resentment. What an awful tragedy it is to let someone hurt and limit you for an entire lifetime. Our time could be better spent on creating and enjoying a life of happiness.
But, how do we know when a lack of forgiveness is holding us back? Obviously, if your blood boils every time you see the person or hear their name, you've got some forgiving to do. But, following are some subtle signs that we've yet to fully forgive, even if we think we have:
You feel irritated or angry with the person and you're not sure why.
Example: You and a friend go out for a bite to eat. She says, "It's your turn to pay, girl?I paid last time." You know that she did pay last time but you feel angry for some reason. You think to yourself, "Why am I angry? It really is my turn to pay." But the truth is that you never forgave her for not repaying you the $150 she borrowed 7 years ago.
You have a hard time with new relationships.
Example: You can only get so close with a new partner or friend before putting up your defenses or self-sabotaging the relationship. You think it's because they are emotionally unavailable for true intimacy. And, that may be true if they have their own forgiveness issues. But, we're not talking about them right now; we're talking about you. In truth you were hurt by an old partner or friend and now sabotage anything that might go any deeper. Here again the freedom is in truly forgiving the person that hurt you in the first place. Only then will you allow someone new to get closer.
You're not getting what you want in this life
Example: You haven't been able to attain the amount of financial security you truly want. You haven't yet met that special person with whom you desire to share your spiritual, emotional and physical life. You're disappointed with your current life-style and wish you had more leisure time for relaxation and romance. The list goes on. I'll say it again; you have some forgiving to do. This time the person you need to forgive is in the mirror. Not the mirror in the busy restaurant, because there, you'll only see what you present to the outside world. No, I'm talking about the mirror in your own private bathroom, first thing in the morning; the one that reflects who it is that you think you really are. The "You" behind your eyes.
Forgiveness takes spiritual exercise and discipline. Most of the time we don't even know that we are angry, leave alone why. Spiritual coaching, growth-oriented readings, mediation and spending time in nature are some ways to become more aware of our internal worlds. And, then we can begin to heal and move our lives in the direction we dream and hope for. There is no better time than now. So, take some steps today.
This is what "Shades and Reflections" is all about. Helping people see them selves more accurately.
Delano Garner is the founder of "Shades and Reflections" a resource site for authentic living. http://www.ShadesandReflections.com