As human beings, we have the gift of forgiveness—to forgive and to be forgiven. For anyone who has been touched by the disease of addiction, forgiveness may be a struggle, a weakness, or something you just don’t know how to go about doing. Below, you will find 7 steps that can help set you on the path toward forgiveness and the freedom it can bring:
- Talk to Someone – Confide in a person you trust. Talk about your feelings, and let the emotions flow. Pain tends to lessen when it is shared.
- Remember, No One Is Perfect – People make mistakes and we have no control over their thoughts, feelings, or actions. Try to understand what happened as if you stood in the other person’s shoes. They might not be a terrible person, but one who made a mistake.
- Shift Perspective – Your reaction to the incident, whether it was a conversation or abuse from years ago is what is causing the pain. Our thoughts are powerful and can not only cause psychological distress but also physical pain. You can choose to let it go and move on. It’s not easy, but it can be done.
- Forgiveness Is for You – To forgive doesn’t mean you have to remain friends or even stay in contact. It means that you are choosing to take the experience less personally and let the pain and blame hurt you less. With time, you will find yourself moving on and moving forward.
- Acceptance – Just like in recovery, acceptance of the problem is key. In this case, forgiving a person who remains in your life is to accept them as they are. We can’t change people, only ourselves.
- Keep Moving Forward – Don’t dwell on the past. Find new friends, seek new adventures, and do new things. Staying stuck works against your own happiness, so choose to live free.
- Live Your Best Life – You do you. By living a strong, healthy, and happy life, you give the person who hurt you zero power. Forgiveness opens your heart to the goodness that surrounds you, and heals the wounds of the past.
If you are struggling with addiction, call The Lakehouse Recovery Center. You can turn your life around and create a beautiful new path moving forward. You are not alone in this, and we are here to help you. Give us a call, we are available 24/7, toll-free at (877) 762-3707. Recovery is possible, call now.