Updated: May 11
Deeper exploration, processing and letting go.
Sometimes we struggle to forgive and totally let go of toxic memories because we believe that we are better off, safer or stronger, when we hold on to a wrong-doing. There are also many layers of forgiveness to contend with. This article explores different levels, how to process, forgive and totally let go
Why is it so hard to forgive?
One common reason is knowing that the person who hurt you has not changed or they are unapologetic and show no remorse for what they did to you. They may say they are sorry, but have not changed or have shown that they have no concern for the trauma they caused. You are concerned, afraid that given the opportunity, they would do the exact same thing, repeat the very act(s) that hurt you. For this reason, you hold on to the toxic traumatic memory emotionally, mentally and physically in your body (somatic). We believe that this holding on protects us. In some cases this is true, especially if the abuse is ongoing, but in most cases, the risk is assumed and no longer present, such that holding on limits us. I explore this in more detail further down, in this article.
There are times you struggle to forgive and totally let go, because mentally, you believe that you have little control over the other person and you are afraid of the uncertainty, that comes with not having control. Again we believe that holding on to the toxic memories brings more reassurance. We feel safer, more protected holding on, rather than letting go.
There are times when you struggle with stubborn and persistent toxic memories. You would have some experience of memories you have tried to let go of again and again, mentally, but there are still stubborn imprints, in layers, trapped in the physical body, at somatic level. This can take time and in some cases, this time to recover is essential, especially if somatic processing is required. Toxic memories trapped in your body can become physical tension, pain or dis-ease causing serious physical and mental health issues. The process of forgiveness has to include letting go of the physical (somatic) imprints as well as the emotional and mental.
Memories are energy expressed at emotional, somatic or mental levels. As time passes, as we feel stronger, we can begin to process these toxic memories within us at all levels.
Emotionally, we hold on to toxic memories because we want a reminder for us to stay safe, do revenge or punish the perpetrator.
Emotional processing involves exploring our emotions, the shame, anger, guilt, blame, resolving and adjusting them to feel more happiness, joy and love within.
As we process emotions that lie underneath toxic memories, we begin to feel less anger, resentment and process our physical pain and dis-ease at a somatic level as well. The tensions and toxicity in our muscles, organs, nervous systems are released. We then find it easier to actually forgive. Energy healing and somatic healing tools help with somatic processing.
As we use transformational tools that resonate with us, the shame, guilt, blame, anger begin to lose their grip within us. The key is to try different tools and strategies, that resonate with you out of the thousands that exist. Find and practice the transformational tools that work for you. Get the help you need. I resonate with forgiveness, energy healing, inner inquiry, journaling and subliminal affirmations the most. Our thoughts impact on our emotions, so for many of us, we can neutralise our emotions best by dealing with our thoughts. As you practice these tools, toxic emotions are resolved, your emotional resilience increases and your perspectives change.
We begin to understand what made a person do something. We acquire the space within to see what made something happen the way it did that hurt us. We understand our sense of self more and can detach with more ease. We may feel some compassion for the other person and for our own self. We may not feel compassion for the other person, but compassion for our own self is important.
It is common for there to be an absence of compassion for the perpetrator,
For instance in cases of sexual abuse, survivors of childhood sexual abuse often use their anger and resentment to keep pushing forward, through life. The other side to this however is that the anger and resentment permeates in the present and affects our relationships, our state of being, until we forgive and totally let go of the anger and resentment.
We can get the help, including therapy and medical practice. Healing and recovery can be resolved at deep levels, then we are able to truly forgive and totally let go. We are ready to experience more emotional and somatic freedom.
This involves how we use our mind to move us forward. it is important to note that trauma affects the physiology of the brain, how we receive information, our perceptions, thoughts, the beliefs we hold about our self and about the world. The beliefs we hold create our emotions. This is why beliefs are fundamental to the forgiveness process. Following trauma, we often feel fundamentally helpless and at the mercy of others because of the disempowering beliefs we hold. This disempowerment is a natural consequence of experiencing trauma.
It is essential to process our dominant beliefs, step by step, in order to regain our sense of power, to develop and hold better mental and emotional coping mechanisms.
✅ adjust beliefs of helplessness and program your mind with empowering thoughts, beliefs and intentions.
✅ surround/remind yourself with positive information/affirmations. ✅ practice small and big acts based on the new positive information you are acquiring.
You begin to feel more empowered to make decisions about your own life, including forgiving others and your own self.
Mental processing involves exploring the rational reasons behind your not forgiving and letting them go. You adjust the reasons to what feels more reasonable to you now. Adjustments could be you knowing you are no longer unsafe, or that you are no longer as unsafe as you used to be. It could actually be knowing that you are now safe. it could be knowing the abuser is far away or that they have shown that they now respect you.
We come to the realisation that we have more information, more experience now. We realise that the circumstances are different now. We know that even if there are some things we need to be cautious about, we can cope better. We know that we will take action to keep ourself safe.
These are all mental processes that are key for moving forward. The process of letting go totally, requires us understanding the reasons, belief(s) we hold around the trauma and adjusting the old reason/ belief for a new one that empowers us. Positive affirmations, even subliminal formats are a good way to replace old toxic beliefs. Self care is also vital in showing our own self that we can cope better now.
If this resonates then this is for you. I encourage you to take the steps to forgive, again and again, to let go and the live in more emotional freedom.
Does it matter who hurt us? No matter what the act was, no matter who the person was, we can forgive and totally let go. Forgiveness is different from Reconciliation.
Whether the person is a parent, sibling, child, spouse, family, friend, neighbour, colleague, official, acquaintance or even a stranger, reconciliation or them feeling sorry is not essential for us to forgive them and let go. Forgiveness does not mean we reconnect or reconcile with those who hurt us, even if they try to reach out to us. Forgiveness does not require them to be sorry.
Why is forgiveness important?
We expand in emotional, mental and somatic freedom when we totally let go of toxic memories. We are more creative and engage more in aspects of our life with more ease and flow. There are times when you have doubts that life can be easier. You may hold a belief that life can be easy but not for you. Sometimes our beliefs contradict themselves, so we may believe we deserve ease and freedom, but not always. We may believe we deserve all good things available, or we may believe that we only deserve the minimum. These beliefs are conditioned by society and by our own self. The beliefs we hold fundamentally attract the quality of our life. Forgiveness allows the attainment of empowering beliefs. Forgiveness is more about you, about seeking redress within you than about the other. Whatever happened, no matter how painful, the onus now at this present time, is on you to do things differently.
Forgiveness increases our own capacity to hold more love now in the present. Forgiveness is a step into freedom, of your mind, of your body and your spirit.
Do not hold on any longer. I now ask “who do you need to forgive today? There may be one person who comes to mind, always at the top of the list. I invite you to let go now.
Forgiveness Exercise (5mins)
Try this forgiveness exercise below:
Just say the words “I forgive (name) for (Act)”. For example, “I forgive Gani for betraying me and breaking my heart”. Write down the sentence, over and over several times on a sheet of paper and feel the emotions that come, as you remember what happened. Stay with this, You may carry on to write what comes to mind, your anger, the hurt, let the emotions flow, do not try to stop the flow, just let the feeling flow out, hold it, feel it, this is ok. This is a powerful tool to help you start letting go.
As you truly feel and hold the pain from your heart, it begins to dissolves. Let it go out and leave you. The traumatic experience itself is over. It is now in the past. It is your memories that keep it in the present. The lessons have been learnt and you have stored these lessons for your coping now and moving forward. Trust this. We can make this choice to totally let go only from an empowered place.
There is nothing we can do about a painful past apart from letting it go. There is really no need to hold on to the experience, the painful memory consciously anymore. It is done.
Now I invite you to Take a deep breathe in and out. Take another deep breathe in and out. Relax and know that you are moving forward, you are embracing your new freedom, your new connections, your next level. Do the forgiveness exercise again if you need to.
Keep exploring strategies, permission slips, transformation tools that help you heal and process toxic memories, at different levels as you connect more with your true authentic self.
Let yourself experience more ease, more space within you. All creativity requires space within. The bigger your goals, the more space, detachment you need within you, with compassion.
In our true empowered mind state, we can totally let go by making the conscious decision totally let go. We know we are done with the past and it no longer serves us. We can choose to forgive, others and self, even when we do not understand why something happened.
We can make this choice to totally let go only from an empowered place.
We can then courageously feel the fear and take action. It is up to us, each person, to take action, doing the fearful thing and reflecting on the good outcomes, or/and going within and reflecting on what is no longer needed. It is up to you to become more empowered, to choose to forgive again and again and totally let go when you are ready. This article is for you who are ready or getting ready.
I am a spiritually connected Transformational Life Coach and a Certified Trauma Recovery Coach (IAOTRC). I help you find and release the root barriers blocking clarity and more authentic connection to your soul truth.
In my programs, I support you to find and release the limits, beliefs, barriers, resistance within to your next level, using a range of transformational tools, including Forgiveness, Reiki Energy Healing, Optimum mindset, Law of Attraction, Subliminal affirmations, Trauma Recovery amongst others.
Send me a message if this resonates and you would like to work with me as your Transformational Life Coach. You can learn more about me here: www.soulspacehealing.com/about
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Check out my FREE 5 day Perfectionism Detox Video series here: www.soulspacehealing.com/five-day-detox. It covers dealing with the inner critic and conquering fear.
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