Life provides turning points of many kinds, but the most powerful of all may be character-revealing moments.
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How Forgiveness Benefits Individual, Family, and Community Health
Robert Enright Ph.D.
Dealing with narcissistic people who offend you can complicate the forgiveness process. Learn how to understand the narcissistic patterns to make forgiving easier.
Your current stresses may have origins in the stresses your great-great-grandparents faced. Is it possible that stresses and their effects are handed down through the generations?
Too often, people are living in the present with the weight of the past inside of them. It not only is unproductive to let this happen but also you can be freed to thrive.
Should people engage in self-forgiveness or is it an illusion or perhaps even inappropriate? Three controversies surrounding self-forgiveness are described and addressed here.
When treated unfairly by others, you might feel offended. A key issue rarely asked is this: In the offense, have I been harmed? If not, this insight may help to reduce resentment.
You must not forgive some people for certain acts! Is this true? Your answer to this question is important because it could aid or hinder healthy development.
Having a struggle forgiving someone? Doing something good for someone who was not good to you may promote emotional healing.
Having all basic needs met does not necessarily lead to transcendent views such as altruism, generosity, and the search for spiritual truth. So what is the way forward?
Gaslighting and ghosting can be harmful. Your decision to forgive may help you clarify that it is not you who has the problem and help you move on.
Forgiveness can set people free. Not ready to forgive? Do not become imprisoned by harshly judging yourself as not morally virtuous. It is time to explore this issue.
Sometimes people make the philosophical error of equating forgiving and reconciling. Knowing the difference between the two can improve your psychological health.
You do more than put the salve of contentment onto your psychological self when you forgive. You stand strong in the good, despite very challenging opposition. This is heroism.
Forgiveness has a variety of life-giving attributes. When you choose to forgive, do you deliberately try to incorporate any of these? Perhaps it is time to give forgiveness a try.
Behaviorism is a popular therapeutic approach. But what are you "buying" when you believe its principles? You might be surprised to learn.
I come to you with an idea: to understand, nurture, and bring forth the idea of forgiveness within the human heart, within families, schools, workplaces, and communities.
Forgiving a cheating boyfriend needs patience because of the pain. Be gentle with yourself. At the same time, when you are ready, be sure to seek fairness from him.
When you forgive, do you see its highest expression as love? Do you see the need for courage to accompany forgiveness? How can you balance these issues of love and courage?
Even if you have had a series of challenging romantic relationships, your new partner and you may be strengthened if you consider the five points described here.
We sometimes think that those who hurt us have far more control over us than they actually do.
When others treat us unfairly we tend to become collectors of wounds that can deprive us of happiness. Perhaps it is time to confront those accumulated wounds.
Families can reduce the tensions in the home and create greater harmony between partners and among children, if forgiveness becomes part of the norm for healthy family functioning.
Too often when people hurt us, we get so angry that we hurt others. "The bad guys" then win twice: first in their hurting us and then in our becoming injurers of others.
Is your basic life-orientation to seek power over others or to use what power you have to be in service to others? Five ideas are presented to help you self-examine power.
Not all quick forgiveness is phony forgiveness.
Might being overly angry put one at risk for certain kinds of cancers?
When you die, you might leave a legacy of anger in the world that could be passed to your children. Or you could leave a legacy of love that is passed on as a gift to others.
Do you have thoughts about forgiveness that stop you from forgiving? You might want to carefully examine these thoughts to be sure you are not blocking yourself from healing.
Is the field of moral development as morally developed as it should be? If not, maybe you are under-striving to be the most highly developed person you can be. See where you stand.
Self-loathing can take its toll on a person, robbing the self of vitality and happiness. Self-forgiveness can restore that vitality and set you free from the bondage of your past.
When you are in emotional pain, do your best to resist defining yourself primarily by that pain which you carry within. You are a person of great worth. Try to see this.
Robert Enright, Ph.D., is a professor of educational psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a licensed psychologist who pioneered the social scientific study of forgiveness.