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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

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Trust, Forgiveness, and Feeling Wronged

Reader's question: I find it hard to forgive (both myself and others). I feel people have wronged me and sometimes I say "let it be" and at other times want revenge -  which I feel is so wrong, but yet feel the need to hurt the ones who have hurt me. I DO NOT TRUST ANYONE. Do you have any suggestions?

My answer:

Thank you very much for writing

It appears that you may be expecting too much from others, from yourself, and from life in general.

Not “trusting” anyone is generally a good thing. If you don’t know someone well, you have no reason to trust that their actions will be beneficial to you. If you do know someone quite well, you can generally “trust” that their future actions will be very similar to their prior actions. If someone promises to act differently in the future from the way they acted in the past, you can be quite sure that they will be unable to fulfill such a promise.

People always attempt to act in their own best interest - which may or may not be in your best interest. Sometimes a person’s “own best interest” may simply be the warm happy feeling they get from helping another - but don’t count on that unless you know the person very very well. Someone could well pay the toll for the car behind, and then drive home and yell at their spouse.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it,
or who said it, no matter if I have said it,
unless it agrees with your own reason
and your own common sense.
- The Buddha

As far as forgiving those you feel have wronged you, consider whether these people have done something like breaking into your home and stealing something, or whether they have simple failed to meet expectations you set for them.

Regardless of the degree of wrong done to you, forgiving others, like forgiving yourself, and like giving up anger, is for you. Forgiving someone is not a gift to that person, rather it is a gift to yourself.

Forgiveness is an act of self-love and respect.
- don Miguel Ruiz

Forgiveness is really a gift to yourself -
have the compassion to forgive others,
and the courage to forgive yourself.
- Mary Anne Radmacher

Anger is an acid that can do more harm
to the vessel in which it is stored
than to anything on which it is poured.
- Mark Twain

These articles may help you…
When You Have Been Wronged
Greed and Betrayal
Practical Forgiveness by Sheri Rosenthal
How to Forgive and Move On
Forgive and Forget? Can You Really Lift Your Burden of Resentments?
Stop Anger Before it Stops You - 7 Secrets
More articles at www.sail7.com