ForgivenessSomeone told me the other day I need to do some serious forgiving so I can find some joy in my life.

Of course they are right.  We all want good things to flow in our lives and want the benefit of forgiveness for ourselves but it’s not something that comes easily.  Somehow the work of holding tight and wishing others would see the error of their ways seems easier though it is really much more difficult than letting it go.

So my quest has begun.  As is my habit I want to make sure I do it right so I researched the subject, looking for a formula that I can apply to the situation.  I even Googled it.  There were hundreds of options but one stood out.  An outline on how to forgive by Wayne Dyer seemed the best but 15 steps seem so daunting.  How can I ever remember all of this?  How can I make it work?  How do I apply it to the situation/s I need to forgive?  What if I don’t do it right?

I make things so complicated…so impossible for myself.

And then I walked through the yard and heard a grasshopper singing.  The closer I got the louder it was.  If I didn’t want to hear it I could move away.  If I decided to laugh at it the sound was fun and joyful.  If I decided it was annoying then it was just that.  That critter wasn’t trying to change anything about me or my life, it was  just being a grasshopper.

That’s how I have to look at the situations and people who have hurt me.  They weren’t trying to hurt me they were just being who they are and doing what they do.  They were just being grasshoppers.  If someone else had been in that place at that time they would have suffered the same treatment.  It’s not about me.  I need to learn to let it go and not take things so personally.  How people treat me is not a reflection on me.  It’s a reflection on them and knowing that it is easier to find compassion for them.

The person who enlightened me suggested I write the names on paper and then light them on fire.  A great idea but I don’t want to start a bonfire.  It’s not a bad idea though and  the symbolic gesture may have some lasting impact.

So will I go for the very complicated 15 steps?

I think not.  I’ve come upon an easier way:

  1. When someone comes to mind who has hurt me I quietly remind myself that it is my wish to forgive them, hard as that may be, and I do it.
  2.  Then I say a little prayer for them and the people in their lives.  (This is not easy.  Sometimes I have to go back to #1 and do a little work on the forgiving part.)
  3. Let it go and when it tries to come back
    1. repeat the process or
    2. write the name on a small piece of paper and burn it in a safe place.

Note:  Very often when I’m reflecting about people or things which need to be forgiven I discover I hold much unforgiveness for myself about the situations so I need to include me in the list.  Perhaps the hardest of the lot to forgive but also the most necessary.

Moving on to better things and opening to great possibilities.

Be sure to listen to the grasshopper.


About Peggy Guiler

You just never know what show up on my blog. As the name implies it is about the stuff of life just like Spilt Milk. Everyday events spark thought and contemplation. Special events in the community, the country or the world may strike a cord and get me talking. Sometimes it's about people in my life or circumstances, sometimes about my garden, sometimes about a book or a political issue. Always it's about something I am passionate about. In my business, River of Hope Enterprises (, I work as an "Certified Coach" (International Coach Federation), a trainer, consultant and speaker. and as a spiritual director. I also drive a school bus to keep the wolf from the door while I build my business. I love the kids on the bus (most of the time). My family is grown and I have three grandkids who thrill my heart but I don't get to see any of them very often. Circumstances of life have made "family" difficult. My son died by suicide at age 16 in 2000 and the strain on our family relationships since has been huge. Mental health is a field where I worked for almost 22 years and where I still do some consulting and training. That combined with my own battle with depression and my son's death weave together to form some of my greatest soap box items: suicide intervention, suicide bereavement and peer support in mental health are right on the top of my list. Social justice is an underlying passion. Keeping the wolf from the door as a single parent was full-time work and my career path as a journalists was augmented with cleaning contracts, cooking, retail clerk, and bartending. I have known hard work and am grateful for the experience and perspective it has given me. A firmly grounded faith and a passion for learning has now taken me toward a new field as a Spiritual Director and I am soon adding to that a license to marry people. As I move toward retirement I am very aware that I have to keep working so I chose to do things which will meet my modest financial needs and also my love of supporting people in their life journey. Woven into all of this is my love of writing. Trained as a Journalist, and having worked in the field as a freelance news writer for many years, I have a great love for writing. This blog is a new beginning for me. As I hone my skills and begin to form a daily discipline of writing I hope it will lead to more writing in the future.
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One Response to Forgiving

  1. Joanna Lynn says:

    I love this post. Forgiveness is a hard one, especially if there are those who choose to hurt you often or, more often than not, are just naturally insensitive people who just say things without thinking.

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