The Benefits of Not Forgiving and the True Path to Freedom

Sometimes it’s really hard to have the courage and strength to forgive someone who has really hurt you, or done wrong to you. According to Kim Giles, there are actually some benefits to not forgiving, along with some setbacks:

“Holding onto anger and judgment is like reaching into a fire to grab a hot coal to throw at your enemy, even though you are the one being burned. It would make a lot more sense to pour water on the whole thing and let it wash away. A trust and forgiveness mindset is the water. Staying in condemnation of others is like choosing to be the warden guarding the prisoners at the jail (making them stay guilty) even though neither of you can ever leave. If you stay at your post to keep them in, you are still there with them (in prison) the whole time. Let yourself out of prison, even if it means letting them leave too! Choose to let everyone out and do it for selfish reasons — because you want a better, happier life, free from pain.

Remember, forgiveness is not about pardoning the guilty or saying it’s OK that they hurt you. It is about choosing to see life as a classroom and seeing all human beings as divine, amazing, scared students in the classroom of life whose poor choices are driven by misconception, fear, confusion and stupidity but whose value is the same no matter what. It is about choosing to see every experience in your life as something that happened to serve your education. If the hurtful experience served you on some level, does it make sense to stay mad about it?

If you insist on staying in judgment and condemnation, you will be giving power to the idea that humans can fail and not be good enough, and this will have to be true for you too.”

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Matt talks with Kim Giles, President and founder of Clarity Point Life Coaching. Named one of the top 20 advice gurus in the country by Good Morning America in 2010. Writes a regular column on every Monday in the Happy Living Section. Author of the Book Choosing Clarity: A Path to Fearlessness. Kim Giles shares her article on The Benefits of Not Forgiving.


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