What is the healing power of forgiveness?
Positive Psychology

Is forgiveness a good medicine?

Read on to discover 6 research proven health benefits of forgiveness.

Forgiveness is not something to be done for others! But it’s something you owe to yourself. Forgiveness is choosing calmness over conflict, peace over punishment and happiness over heaviness.

It helps in clearing the conflicts, making life simplified and saving a lot of energy. But Ayurvedic doctor says that’s not all! This Ayurvedic Doctor reveals some lesser-known health benefits of forgiveness.

I am sure you have heard this story!

Hold a jug filled with water in your hand. Keep holding it for 5 minutes, your hand starts tingling. Hold it for 15 minutes, your hand starts paining. Don’t drop it for an hour and your hand goes numb.

Consider that jug filled with water as your emotions full of grudge. The longer you hold it the more painful it becomes. Drop the jug, free yourself from the burden and the pain will go!

Also Read: Ayurvedic doctor says Forgiveness brings good health

A Real life clinical experience – Ayurvedic Doctor’s Diary

Recently, a 40-year-old woman visited my clinic. She was grumpy and irked. Emitted a vibe that could repulse anyone standing even at a hand’s distance.

I asked her what was bothering her.

Searching for the right words, she bursted out into tears.

I waited patiently for her to calm down and asked her to speak up.

The story began with some childhood scar she held against her parents. Then it moved on to her scorned marriage. She was unsatisfied with her social status and envied the life of her sistets.

The list continued.

She complained about her son’s teachers and his schools. His company was also bothering her. Next, she moved to the deeper wounds that she had hid for long.

She blamed her past relationships and cheater boyfriend for the mess that her life has become. As she spoke I could sense the magnitude of the hurricane that she was unraveling.

I asked her what’s her blood pressure reading.

She was hypertensive.

It was obvious.

She also suffered from hypothyroidism.

I understood the root cause of all her pain and suffering.

It was the grudge that she carried in her heart that has now manifested into physical forms.

Rather than writing a long list of medicines, I asked her to practice forgiveness.

She was stunned to hear my solution.

I told her the story of the boy holding a jar and she could relate her situation. Because she has been holding the grudge for so long, her body and mind are now becoming numb.

Anger, fear, ego, hostility, and a desire for revenge are all different shades of human emotions. Dropping the deadweight and embracing the route of forgiveness does more than just free the mind.

Forgiveness – Research Quotes

A study published in Hopkinsmedicine revealed that forgiveness has many health benefits. It lowers the risk of a heart attack. Improves cholesterol levels and boosts quality sleep. Reduces pain. Controls blood pressure. Further, helps in calming anxiety, depression, and stress.

Charlotte van Oyen Witvliet and her colleagues at Hope College said, ”Forgiveness frees you from the prison of hurt and vengeful emotion. It yields both emotional and physical benefits. Forgiveness reduces stress, lessens negative emotion, prevents cardiovascular problems, and improves immune system performance”.

Forgive yourself first!!!!

While you write the long list of forgiveness, write your own name at the top. For whatever guilt you hold in your heart, let it go. Breathe it out and forgive yourself before forgiving others.

10 amazing health Benefits of Forgiveness

Holding on to the past simply means caging your mind and chaining your thoughts. Letting it go not only frees space in your mind but untaps amazing health benefits.

  1. Forgiveness for your mind’s sake – Holding bitterness, grudge, and negativity is one of the main reasons for mental stress. Research shows that forgiveness is a permanent cure for anxiety and stress. A study published in NCBI concluded that forgiveness is associated with less stress and, in turn, better mental health. 
  2. Forgive for your long life – Forgiveness is a key parameter in forging healthy and long-lasting relationships. Studies proved that healthy relationships are the secret to happiness and longevity.
  3. Forgive to control your BP – Holding on to grudges and bitterness for people stimulates anger. And anger is a proven causative of high blood pressure.
  4. Forgive to sleep better – What’s keeping you away from a night of sound sleep? Your past, grudges, and pain. Let go of them and see how well you sleep! Every research says so.
  5. Forgive for a strong immune system – Forgiveness not only strengthens your emotional immunity, but it also boosts your physical immunity.
  6. Forgive for your heart’s sakeStudies revealed that forgiveness is very rewarding for your health. It lowers the risk of heart attack and improves cholesterol levels.

Apart from these six research backed benefits, forgiveness is also linked to improved peace, self-esteem, confidence and happiness. Hence, researchers say that Forgiveness is very important for the giver’s mental sanity, emotional peace and psychological well being.

How to forgive?

We all have learned to say ‘it’s ok’ when someone says I’m sorry!

But saying it’s ok and really feeling ok are often two different things.

Also, in real life, not everyone who walks over our feelings feel sorry!

How do your forgive them without being asked?

That’s the thing about forgiveness. Don’t do it for them, do it for your own peace. Forgive them anyway! Whether they realize it or not, ask for it or not, really mean it or not! Forgive all.

Here are 5 easy steps to convince your mind to forgive.

  1. Realize the physical and mental benefits of forgiveness.
  2. Acknowlegde that you need healing and that will begin with forgiveness.
  3. Stop seeing yourself as the victim of someone else’s wrong doings.
  4. Speak to someone about your feelings.
  5. Consider joining a support group or seeing a counselor.

Let go off the grudges and look forward to move on.

Forgiveness is challenging!

Forgiving is not easy as it sounds. It takes real strength and power to forgive someone evem without asking. So, here is what you need to tell yourself when you feel bad about someone.

  • Improve your empathy. See the situation through a new perspective.
  • Try to talk it out. If you can’t talk with the person that share it with a counsellor or healer.
  • Try to see things behind the veils. Ask yourself why he or she would behave in such a way. May be it’s their upbringing or circumstances that played a role.
  • Take it out on a paper. Write a journal and take out your negativity.
  • Understand that forgiveness is a process. Give it some time and the heaviness in your heart will go.

What if the person continues to hurt?

In most cases, we walk away from the one who hurts us. Be it an ex or a friend. But some relationships are for life. Your relationship with your parents, siblings or spouse. You can’t run away.

If they continue to hurt your and resist to change then talk it out. Ask them to change for your peace, happiness, and emotional and spiritual healing. If they fail to change then talk to a counsellor and seek the best option for your situation!

Word Wisdom: Health benefits of forgiveness

Forgiveness is very important for your own mental and physical health. However, forgiving someone does not mean enduring torture. Seek he best solution and move on in your life.

Life is too beautiful to be spent resenting.

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Anuradha March 3, 2019 at 3:42 am

Very Ture!

Dr. Brahmanand Nayak August 17, 2019 at 6:43 am

thanks, anu!

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