Friday, August 05, 2011

Ways to improve focus... pt2 :: forgiveness

I know ’forgiveness’ may sound like an odd suggestion for a way to improve your focus, but I find it works. Let me explain.

When we are wronged, our natural reaction seems to centre around righting this wrong... of ensuring parity, pursuing vindication and, in some occasions, seeking revenge. This is only natural.

However, the time spent brooding over the issue could and should be better spent... and the thought of being wronged quickly exorcised before bitterness sets in.

Bitterness is an unnecessary and unhealthy distraction. It takes away the ’now’ with a constant replaying of ’then’. It holds us back and doesn't allow us to move forward... inhibiting collaboration and our own personal freedom.

Brooding and plotting revenge is thinking time that is better spent. It is never creative or productive. It is about short-term gain... about making us ’feel better’.

There is something better than bitter... and it is forgiveness.

This isn't some namby-pamby ideal but considered thinking - acceptance of the failings of others... the failings of the person or people who have wronged you... allows us to move on and to jettison unproductive bitterness that would otherwise try to consume us.

It doesn't remove the hurt or the pain of being wronged... but allows us to focus on the creative and constructive steps that we need to take to heal.

To that end, you could argue that forgiveness is self-centred because it keeps the focus on you. Bitterness is all about ’the other’ and not about you, in this regard.

I have no answer for how to heal other than to take comfort in what faith you have and the friends that surround you... but I do strongly believe that the extra capacity available in your heart and head from dumping the bitterness will help you on your way to restoration.

So, in closing, forgiveness after a wrong has occurred and subsequently ’moving on’ will help you to focus on now... and ensure you do not waste your time, effort and personal state of peace on someone or something that doesn’t deserve it.

I should know... I recently forgave someone who I held a considerable amount of bitterness towards. The feeling and sense of release was tremendous. I should have done it at the time... but didn't. I’m glad I have now.

We don't have the luxury of time to waste wallowing in bitterness... so don't!


1 comment:

Angus Mathie said...

I have benefited from reading this series and it is good to see a practical outworking of a situation you encountered. Forgiving wrongs can be a very difficult thing to do, especially when an individual does not see the need to be forgiven. Looking forward to the rest of the series.


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