Detachment, forgiveness & letting go
Humans have a bias that keeps us from making change. We are more comfortable with status quo that is unhealthy for us than we are with change that might be for the better. We hold on to what we have because at least we know what that looks like. Our fear keeps us from taking the leap of faith and moving forward. But stagnating doesn't feel good. We need to step outside the viscous circle and see what other options there are. Sometimes this means forgiving ourselves or others for not changing sooner or not continuing to share a path. This can cause anger, frustration and anxiety. Mark Twain said "Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured".
Anyone who has played in the ocean has probably experienced being knocked down and dragged under. When this happens we can fight our way to the surface only to be pounded by the next swell or we can learn to ride the wave and surface with the surf opens space between the waves. The more we fight against the tide, the more we get pounded by the surf. But if we surrender, we can go with it and come out on top. Life is exactly the same way. The more we resist change, the harder it becomes. The more we attach our happiness to something external, the less likely we are to be happy.
When we recognize that the only genuine source of security is your TRUE SELF, then we can detach. We do this by releasing our need to look a certain way, to attain a certain status or to have a certain career. Only a willingness to embrace the unknown can provide security.
Sometimes this sense of freedom will involve forgiving ourselves or others. We might forgive ourselves for not changing sooner, for how we behaved in the past or for staying in a bad situation too long. It is helpful to treat your self like you would a small child; with kindness, gentleness and compassion. When others are involved research on forgiveness through projects like The Stanford Forgiveness Project tells us that the most successful steps to forgiveness are
1) Identify the grudge or emotion you are holding on to.
2) When emotion overwhelms practice stress management techniques like square breathing or mindful meditation to decrease fight/flight symptoms.
3) Let go of the hurt or anger.
4) Practice gratitude. Find something to be grateful for. (perhaps how much you have grown or how string you have become)
5) Change your pattern. Look at your pattern as a casual observer rather than a participant. Think of what you might tell a friend to do in this situation.
6) Move on!
Remember, moving on does not mean you condone the action, it means that the past can no longer hurt you.
Giving up all hope of having a better past allows you the freedom to make a beautiful future.
Recommended reading:Martha Beck~ Finding Your Own North Star