Let’s face it: Forgiveness is hard.
When it comes to forgiving someone that broke your heart, you’ve surpassed hard and moved into brutally difficult territory.
My client Meredith knew her father had been serially unfaithful to her mother while she was growing up. Almost every one of the men Meredith dated before she got married cheated on her. Then Meredith married someone who could never be faithful to her either.
Meredith was heartbroken and mad as hell. The last thing she thought she should do was forgive her husband for what she felt was the ultimate transgression. She carried the weight of that betrayal with her for many years. She talked about it with her girlfriends, with her therapist and anyone who would listen to her story. Over time, she created deeply held beliefs that all men cheat and love always hurts. And life backed up her story.
Meredith is an incredibly intelligent woman. Intellectually, she knows that these beliefs literally can’t be true; but they felt spot-on to her. After all, she had a lot of evidence and life experience to prove it. She knew in her mind that carrying the hurt of the betrayal was only continuing to cause hurt to herself, but that didn’t make it any easier for her heart to forgive.
Here’s where Meredith and many of us get stuck: There’s no way around forgiveness if we want freedom from the pain of lost love.
We often get into the trap of thinking that withholding forgiveness from the person who hurt or betrayed us makes them “pay” for what they did, and teaches them an important lesson.
Problem is, that’s not how it works.
Resisting forgiveness is like locking ourselves in our own self-imposed prison. We hold ourselves back from everything we really want by withholding forgiveness from someone who hurt us. My coaching clients often tell me they want to heal from past relationships, and yet they dig in their heels and push back hard when we talk about forgiving. No one else can release us from that prison, because we’re the holder of the only keys.
Forgiveness is the choice we make to use those keys to free ourselves in order to heal and move on after a painful breakup.
Reason to Forgive #1: What You Resist Will Persist
Whatever we don’t, can’t, or won’t forgive will create a deeply held belief for us. When we make the choice to stay stuck by carrying around resentments from past relationships, we continue to attract betrayal into our lives. That negative energy becomes a magnet attracting more of the exact hurtful experiences we don’t want, over and over again, with different people. I call it attracting the same man in a different pair of pants.
To compound that, the more we review, rehash and revisit the betrayal over and over in our minds and talk about it – with our friends or anyone who will listen – the more energy and momentum we create around that resentment. That momentum attracts more people who will hurt us, bringing us additional proof that our belief is true – and keeping us stuck in heartbreak.
Meredith carried the belief that all men cheat, so she continued attracting men to her that either couldn’t or wouldn’t be faithful. Law of Attraction at its finest.
Reason to Forgive #2: You Could Sabotage Future Relationships
Harboring resentments from past loves makes finding love much more difficult than it needs to be. You are much more likely to unintentionally sabotage a future loving relationship by making a potential love pay for the sins of past relationship betrayals.
If a lack of trust is the resentment you’re carrying, you risk entering into a new relationship being overly cautious, suspicious, or always assuming the worst.
If a fear of abandonment is the resentment you’re carrying, you’re likely to enter into a new relationship with a graspy, needy energy that will actually drive him away.
If a fear of being hurt is the general resentment you’re carrying, you may start a new relationship and hide your heart, not allowing him to get to see and experience the real you.
When we’re willing to forgive the people who hurt us, we stop attracting the experiences that have been so hurtful previously and enter into new relationships with a clear and open heart. When we release those resentments, we can create a future love experience that looks and feels dramatically different than our past love experiences.
If you’re ready to forgive the one that broke your heart, my free video training will show you how: How to Finally Get Over Him. (http://www.sharonpopetruth.com/forgiveness-training/).
Tell the Truth. Show up in Love. Live in Freedom.