I was having a conversation with a friend the other day who’s going through a divorce. She’s filled with anger towards her ex. Whether it’s justified or not, it’s how she feels. But what I pointed out to her is that this anger that’s raging inside of her is not changing or affecting him in any way. I mean, it’s not like she made some sort of voodoo doll and was able to cause him some real physical pain (although I’m sure she’d like to.) The only thing that her anger is accomplishing is making her stress level go up, most likely causing health issues and definitely preventing her from moving on with her life and being happy.
As I’ve begun my journey as a motivational speaker and blogger, I’m coming in contact with many people who are struggling with anger at their significant other, friends, kids, co-workers and neighbors. And yes, they’re even angry at themselves for choices they’ve made that they deeply regret. Their thoughts are consumed with how they’ve been wronged and how life is unfair.
Whether it’s trying to understand why a good friend has chosen to walk out of your life, why an ex-spouse continues to try and hurt you or why a family member has said hurtful things, you’ll probably never learn the reason. You could also be struggling with feeling like an inadequate provider for your family, a “slacker mom” who never does as much as the other moms or poor body image. The holidays tend to accentuate these feelings as we think back on previous years when things might have seemed better.
Let’s face it, it’s hard letting go of a grudge and equally hard letting go of feelings of inadequacy. But the old cliché is true – the only person you’re hurting is yourself. And so I’m asking you to give yourself the most valuable gift you could ever receive this year – acceptance.
Accept that people are making the choices they’re making and that’s there “thing.” Stop trying to forgive or even understand. Allow them to go on their way down their own path. You can’t control them or change them but you canturn the energy inward and make peace with yourself about the situation.
And next, accept yourself. The idea of “perfection” is imposed by outside people and doesn’t exist. You’re strong, beautiful and have the power to create the life you want.
Are you ready to be happy?