The Nature of Forgiveness

Mustering up genuine compassion for those who have wronged us, instead of allowing anger toward them to eat away at us, is the course of action recommended by most psychologists. An exception to the belief that burying the hatchet brings peace to the soul may be sexual abuse: Some victims of these crimes are empowered when given permission to not forgive.

Recent posts on Forgiveness

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Who’s to Blame? The Real Downside of the Blame Game

By F. Diane Barth L.C.S.W. on April 22, 2017 in Off the Couch
When things go wrong, blaming someone or something – even yourself – can help you cope. But blame can be a problem, too. Here's how you can move past the blame game.

Renewing War-Torn Communities Through Forgiveness Education

Might forgiveness education be the missing piece to the peace puzzle?

Forgiving Yourself

Through self-forgiveness there is psychological and, perhaps even more profoundly, spiritual growth.
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How to Rebuild Trust When a Betrayal Comes to Light

By Tim Cole Ph.D. on April 14, 2017 in Intimate Portrait
Has your partner betrayed your trust? Take the necessary steps to repair the damage done.

Forgiveness Research and the Gratitude Factor

While forgiveness is related to the brain's grey matter, building a neural pathway for gratitude in the brain can help in achieving a certain peace of mind.

The "Guilty Dog" Look and Other Borrowed Signals

The guilty dog look and the human handshake have similar roots in the evolution of animal communication.

The Two Faces of Narcissism in Romantic Relationships

Narcissists are attractive in the short-run but in long-term, their grandiosity leads to problems. New research shows how narcissism’s two faces predict relationship quality.

Forgive and Go Free!

Free yourself with forgiveness.

A New Approach to Reducing Depression

Do you want to reduce your symptoms of psychological depression even more? Consider forgiveness therapy.

Johnny Depp, Amber Heard, and the Reasons We Blame Victims

In May of 2016, actress Amber Heard accused her husband Johnny Depp of hitting her and assaulting her. She posted pictures of injuries to her face and filed for divorce.

Late by Four Days?

By Seth Slater M.F.A. on March 29, 2017 in The Dolphin Divide
How to not be kept waiting. When the desire for instant gratification meets perpetual procrastination, what’s to be done?
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8 Steps to Improving Your Self-Esteem

Ever struggle with self-doubt? (Who hasn't?) Here are some ways to start conquering those demons and begin to embrace the lovable being that you are.

Why Resentment Lasts—and How to Defeat It

Resentment is a formidable foe. Are you willing to defeat it by trying these 5 approaches?

Research Shows How We Decide Whether To Blame

By Grant H. Brenner M.D. on March 24, 2017 in ExperiMentations
We tend to blame easily, at our peril. Blaming can take the place of thinking, and lead to vicious cycles. Understanding how blame works can help us make better choices.

The War is ON, and Nature Will Not Lose—People Will

By Kenneth Worthy Ph.D. on March 23, 2017 in The Green Mind
Who will be the losers of Trump’s war on nature? Humans.

A Single Act of Amnesty: the Heart of Com-passion

By Gregg Levoy on March 20, 2017 in Passion!
Passion comes from a word meaning "to suffer," and compassion means shared suffering. As with last month’s post, this month's features a second story about the power of com-passion

Guilt Me Not

Stop the guilt talk in your head.

Blame It on the Autopilot

By David Ludden Ph.D. on March 12, 2017 in Talking Apes
We pass our days in routine and habit, only vaguely aware of our actions. So why do we assume others know exactly what they’re doing?

Five Forgiveness Exercises for Couples

Do you want a stronger relationship with your partner? If so, you might try these five forgiveness exercises.

When Silence Is Deafening

By Kaja Perina on March 07, 2017 in Brainstorm
A tiny act or calculation, including the decision to keep a secret, can eventually and invisibly sculpt a person’s relationships, even his or her identity.

Hate: Learning and Unlearning It

By Brenda Berger Ph.D. on March 06, 2017 in Hearts and Minds
At a time in America when anger is exploding into aggression and division, it's worth thinking about hatred in ourselves and ways to surmount it.
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More Fully Living in the Present and Loving in Relationships

In spite of the spotlights shining down at the podium, I could make out her face through the dimly lit houselights...

Non-Judgment Day

By Sophie Sabbage on March 03, 2017 in The Cancer Whisperer
What if beauty is a quality of being, a verb not a noun?

HOCD: a Clinical Disorder vs. Pseudoscience

By David J Ley Ph.D. on March 02, 2017 in Women Who Stray
Homosexual Obsessive Compulsive Disorder sounds scary, but isn't caused by porn, and has nothing to do with straight people who get turned on by homosexual stimuli.
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When You Can't Forgive

Forgiveness is natural when certain conditions are met. But in the absence of one or more of these, it’s not your fault if you can’t get past it.

Breaking the Vicious Cycle

“I don’t know what the problem is”, Mark told me. “No matter what I do, no matter how hard I try, it seems that my efforts are never good enough.

How Trump Takes Advantage of the Psychology of Blame

By Robert Klitzman M.D. on February 23, 2017 in Am I My Genes?
To make sense of complex problems, we often seek simple story lines. These often involve blaming someone, assigning physical and moral cause. Trump takes advantage of this trait.

Be Responsible For Your Relationships

By Barton Goldsmith Ph.D. on February 21, 2017 in Emotional Fitness
We are 100 percent responsible for our relationships. We create them in our minds and hearts, and we have a hand in the twists and turns they take.

Forgiveness: 3 Misconceptions

By Robert Enright, Ph.D. on February 18, 2017 in The Forgiving Life
Forgiving others can be misunderstood, preventing psychological healing.

The Gift That Keeps on Giving: Coping with Parental Guilt

By Dena Kouremetis on February 17, 2017 in The Unedited Offspring
What can we do to assuage the guilt we feel over not being the best parents we could have been?