Why It’s So Important to Not Rush Forgiveness

Forgiveness is usually something that comes pretty easy to me. Forgetting not so much. Things stick in mind for a long time. Maybe because I’m quite the thinking type.

Lately though, I’ve been feeling a bit stubborn. I’ve been feeling a bit “I want to hold a grudge and be mad” for a little while. It’s an odd feeling to have for me. Yet at the same time it feels good. It feels empowering and protective. And it feels peculiarly natural.

I really believe that we must practice forgiveness. Forgiveness is necessary to move on. It’s necessary for healing and growth.

But maybe in the past I have forgiven too easily and too quickly. Rushing the process too much and not giving myself the opportunity to really heal.

But we tend to live in a world that is either all or nothing.

We either forgive right away or we don’t forgive. Where is the middle ground? What if you need to just hold onto the anger a little as your pain subsides? And allow yourself to let these feelings be natural to you. And then once you make your way through it all then you can be ready to forgive. Can we grant ourselves permission to do that?

Forgiveness comes at different times. That time will vary from situation to situation. Don’t force yourself into it. Acknowledge that the end goal will have to include forgiveness but you don’t have to rush it.

You’ll find it will come easier and more naturally this way.

Because I’m a thinker and my mind works in ways of processes, I’m going to relate forgiveness to the process of grief.

Referenced on grief.com, the five stages of grief are such:

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance

I was listening to a TED Talk one evening and the speaker said something that really stuck with me. She spoke of depression and sadness but she spoke of it in a new perspective. It was described as a necessary part of healing that we needed to go through. As a result, creating a space for us to hull up and heal our wounds. To get to acceptance, we have to go through the depression or the sadness.

I relate forgiveness with the fifth step acceptance.

We have to go through the shock of the situation happening. Then acknowledge that we’re angry because we were hurt or betrayed. After that comes the torturing process of all the “what ifs” thinking (this is where I can sometimes get stuck and need a little push through). Then comes the crappy sitting with the sadness part. Then comes forgiveness.

Forgiveness is at the end of this process.

(I’m not a psychologist so please understand that I am purely speaking from observation and experience). When we rush to forgive we will most likely be skipping some of those steps to get there. If we didn’t grant ourselves permission to flow through the other feelings, can we truly give forgiveness? Is forgiveness honest if it isn’t resolved? Going through the process gives us that resolution.

Maybe it is something easily forgiven in which the process will be fast. Or maybe it was a rough break up and it’s going to take awhile. Either one is okay. Be okay with it. Be loving to yourself during this time (and forgive yourself for needing more time). This is part of good self care.

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Laura is a big dreamer, full time marketing manager, blogger, and part-time artist. Like many of us, she spent part of her life struggling with frustrations on a daily basis and just all around felt drained and uninspired…that was her. She decided to change all that one morning. Now Laura lives in the blogging world because she believes the buzz about self-care and self-love needs to be heard. She aspires to inspire people in their everyday lives and help them to live towards their dreams and making the most out of every day by sharing her own experiences and stories. 
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6 thoughts on “Why It’s So Important to Not Rush Forgiveness

  1. I completely agree with you! My forgiveness post talked about why it’s important to forgive, but you’re so right: It’s important to do that forgiving at the right time. I think we tend to try to rush through negative emotions but we should let them happen. We should embrace them and give them the time they need to develop!

    1. I really like how you used the word ’embrace’. Negative emotions are uncomfortable so I think we like to try and work through them as fast as we can. The challenge in that though is that in rushing through them I’m not sure we always really process them and then they can linger. Every emotion we have has a purpose and something we can learn or discover from them. In turn this can hinder our ability to truly accept what is and practice honest forgiveness. Sometimes we just need to take our time and muddle through the discomfort until it all makes sense again.

  2. I’ve never thought about it this way before, but I definitely agree with you. I’m the sort that forgives far too quickly. As a pacifist and people-pleaser, I would rather others are happy than to come to terms with my own emotions. And that’s really unhealthy.

  3. I totally agree with you, you shouldn’t be quick in forgiving. You should really think about what that person did. If you are really close to the person you should cool things off.

  4. Wow, I’ve never thought of forgiveness in this way. I’ve always felt guilty about being in the middle ground, so I’m relieved that it’s okay and normal to be on the journey ❤️

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