Forgiveness: How It Affects Your Health By Lori English
Do you know the gut wrenching feeling when you are filled with stress and head hurts and you can feel your blood pressure rise? This is the feeling of anger and resentment building when your health is being affected by negative thoughts.
What Does Forgiveness Mean?
Forgiveness is not forgetting what someone did to you but getting to a point in your life that you are willing to let go of the hurt and pain. Many psychologists state the art of forgiveness is not condoning, excusing, or forgetting.
If you are angry you can imagine how this is affecting your body as well. The body is a target for the stress that you feel throughout your day. If you are feeding your body healthy thoughts it will increase your resistance to unhealthy diseases.
The process of releasing fear, anger and resentment is powerful and can be very healing to the soul.
Forgiveness and Health
A book Written by Gabor Mate’ M.D. ” When The Body Says No”, Exploring the Stress-Disease Connection is about different that impact people with different personalities. In this book Dr. Mate describes a situation with a 32 year old woman who was very talented, graduated first in her class.
Although she had everything in her favor she was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. In his book, Mate’ describes the personality as a passive person afraid to say no, and states that health and mental are connected with diseases.
This is example is to show how your health can be affected by negative thoughts or unprocessed trauma.
Mate’s exploration between the body and stress and how hormones that are secreted from the endocrine system that is cortisol can reach havoc on the body and cause Adenal insufficiency.
- Defensiveness-a shield that keeps our ego from being hurt and allows us to think about what was said and process it at a later time.
- Another type of response to hurt is anger and lashing out on someone in the moment, are you familiar with this one? ” You should have know better not to do something so selfish. Word and phrases are used to ” get back at the other person or make them feel hurt as well.
- Shutting Down- This is a defensive mechanism people use and say well I get them back I wont talk it all.
- Changing the subject is also a type of defense mechanism to divert the conversational elsewhere to not discuss what is really going on with someone or how hurt they are feeling.
Health Is Compromised By Forgiveness
In the last decade studies prove that heath and forgiveness are just as interconnected to our body such as the nervous system and the brain.
In fact, many medical illnesses are thought to be caused by stress and unresolved emotional issues. A healthy person can usually deal with many obstacles throughout the day and find solution’s.
Generally, researchers coverage upon that forgiveness and health entails two components of deliberately reducing negative affect and actively generating empathetic , prosococial feelings in its place. According to Worthington (2001) linked chronic states of unforgiveness to to risk of higher disease.
Benefits of Forgiving
Letting go and forgiving someone that hurt you is not easy, but allowing the other hurt to go and forgiving the other person is valuable to your health and can increase coping skills, ability to confront past offenses, and begin a healing process.
The benefits of forgiveness are well established when it comes to health and how you take care of your needs. A therapist can assist you in increasing your coping skills, but if you want to make changes you have to have the willingness to do so. The same is for forgiveness and letting go of something that hurt you.
Tips To Letting Go of Past Hurts
Letting go of past hurts and resentments can benefit your overall health and happiness.
First, allow yourself to be angry and feel what you have to without making excuses.
Second, Talk to a close friend, family member, or therapist to sort through your thoughts and feelings.
If possible write down your feelings in a journal everyday .
The process of forgiveness is important to you for many reasons that include your everyday happiness and health. Forgiveness is linked to positive mental health and physical health.
Certain outcomes of forgiveness and personality are conducted throughout many scientific trials, but the truth is if you are willing to forgive and forget you are making a life changing choice that is beneficial for your health.
Healing is a way to make your life better and how you feel about yourself and your circumstance can truly affect your health. Take care of your life and live a healthy and happy life and most of all learn to forgive for you.