We have all had someone hurt us. Some of us have deep wounds going back years. Others have had fairly secure childhoods but have been surprised by untrustworthy collegues or friends. Life can throw us curve balls. What do you do when you have just been thrown a curve ball? Do you let it hit you hard on the forhead and knock you out for the remainder of the game? It can be tempting to give into it and let it get the best of you. How do you get back on track when someone or something has derailed you from your tracks? It is not always easy.
I wish I could offer you "5 easy steps" to recovery! Wouldn't that be wonderful if life's challenges could be fixed in easy steps? I would love that. It would make life easier and my job easier. However, life is not that simple and solutions can be evasive. What I can do is offer you some ideas.
First, take a good hard look at the problem. You cannot solve a problem you are in denial about. Using the ostrich "stick your head in the sand" approach won't get you anywhere.
Second, find good friends, family, or a good counselor to support you and help you through.
Third, pursue a solution. Decide what your options are and work toward one of them. Depending on your situation there are probably a range of options. If the path you are on isn't working you can always re-evaluate and try something new.
Fourth, try to forgive. What I find is that many people misunderstand what forgiveness is. As a result, let's look at it more.
Forgiveness is; letting go of the hurt. If you are still cussing someone out in your thoughts you probably haven't forgiven yet. It is understanding that the person who hurt you is human and does make mistakes.
You may need to verbalize what you have been hurt by, but don't expect that to change the person you are confronting. Often they will maintain their position. Very rarely are you applauded or thanked for your efforts in communicating. However, you might need to communicate in order to feel heard or that you had a chance to speak your perspective on the situation.
Forgiveness is NOT; holding a grudge, taking revenge, or lashing out. Just because you feel justified in your anger doesn't mean you get to slash their tires. You might need to write out your feelings on paper just to get it out. A journal or a good friend can help you get your feelings out.
Forgiveness is also NOT; going back for more pain in an abusive situation. Some people and some situations are very hostile and abusive. Just because you forgive does not mean that you have to tolerate more of the abuse or mistreatment. Setting boundaries might be imperative for you to heal and recover from the past hurts. You can forgive from a distance if you need to.
Forgiveness is; a process. Depending on how deep the pain or how frequent the hurts it might take weeks, months or even years to process. Once you choose to forgive, you choose a journey. You may have good days and you may have tough days. You may feel like you are almost there only to feel the hurt all over again. Continue to pursue your choice to forgive and eventually it will come.
Forgiveness is; for you. Forgiveness is a choice you make to set your own heart free. Anger only holds you hostage. Do it for yourself and let God or life take care of the rest.
May you be blessed as you choose to forgive and move forward with life.