Practicing Forgiveness

| By Jodi Horton

Forgiveness of self and others is such an important part of the grief journey.  Did you know that the more compassionate we are, the less we are able to forgive ourselves?  We somehow hold ourselves to a different, higher standard of perfection in our relationships, perhaps an unrealistic expectation. writing letters

The truth is that we are all imperfect beings and healthy relationships are balanced with an abundance of love and forgiveness. When a loved one dies we tend to forget their imperfections and magnify our own, often causing ourselves undeserved pain and suffering, both complicating and prolonging our grief experience.

One strategy for personal healing and reconciliation is very simple but effective.  Take a moment and write a heartfelt letter to your loved one. In the letter, express your deepest regrets and emotions.  You may also take it one step further and write a letter back to yourself, imagining what your loved one would say.  This simple exercise can have an enormous impact on your journey through grief. What we cannot express in reality can often be healed symbolically.

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