5 Steps to Forgiving Someone Who Has Hurt You

Alright friends, it’s time to dig deep. Ask yourself this question: Are you angry with someone in your life right now? Why?

Living with anger and forgiveness can be a truly damaging thing to our emotional health and well-being. It can be incredibly difficult to be at peace when someone we love has harmed us; we feel betrayed, broken down and often very, very far from wanting to ever see them again.

This is never a good place to be.

Why is forgiveness so difficult? Because for many of us, revenge or vindication feels much more just. Most people have a tendency to punish those who’ve hurt us, sometimes directly (hurling back insults with vengeance or taking offensive action) or more passive aggressively (giving people the silent treatment, wallowing, giving glaring looks, gossiping). And in the end, are we better for it? Usually not.

Forgiveness is not a feeling; it’s a decision that we make with a clear mind and a settled heart, with the full intent to let go

So what does real forgiveness look like? And how can we free ourselves from the burden of hurt?

Step 1: Name the issue. One of the most important things you can do as you process an offense is to name the issue in your heart, to its full extent. What happened? What specific actions harmed you? Why? Is there a reason this struck a chord? Get to the core of the issue to the best of your ability.

Step 2: Name your fear. Once you’ve named the issue and identified the real reasons you were hurt by it, identify the barriers you are facing to forgiveness. Are you afraid that by forgiving this person, you open yourself up to hurt again? Do you worry that forgiveness is vulnerable?

Step 3: Choose compassion and courage. We have amazing control over our own wills. Make the conscious decision to choose compassion and courage over bitterness. Even when every fiber of your being resists, choose to be the bigger person. Remind yourself that everyone is human, no one is perfect, and think about how you’d feel if you needed someone to forgive you.

Step 4: Surrender your hurt. It takes much less energy to let go and forgive than it does to stay bitter. Do not dwell on what happened, but open your heart instead. To truly surrender, make these four promises to yourself and others who can hold you accountable: “I will not dwell on this pain,” “I will not use this incident against you in the future,” “I will not gossip with others about this issue” and “I will not let this incident stand between us.”

Step 5: Set a pattern of love. Try your very best to do right by the other person. Send them smiles, treat them with kindness and turn the relationship around, if appropriate. Almost every situation can be mended with love and attention. If the person you feel hurt by is a toxic person, it’s okay for that extra love and attention to go right back to you.



Elisa F
Elisa F1 years ago

Thanks for sharing :)

Chen B
Chen Boon Fook2 years ago


Nang Hai C
Nang Hai C2 years ago

Thank you for posting!

Genevieve O.
Genevieve O2 years ago

Forgiveness= Love. Thanks Lauren.

Jim Ven
Jim Ven2 years ago

thanks for sharing.

Andrea B.
.2 years ago

Thanks for sharing this article, I think i will send this to my ex-boyfriend, lol.

Sulabh S.
.2 years ago

I was thinking that you would mention, "By smelling flowers". Just kidding. Thank you for sharing this article.

Deborah W.
Deborah W2 years ago

LOVE IS THE ANSWER. Nowadays presented as romantic and carefree when, in reality, love hurts at times, if deep and unconditional. Forgetting is to me even harder than forgiving, the hurt always hurts, and keeps the event(s) ever-present UNLESS resolution has been tried to exhaustion and still resolved ... or, IF NOT POSSIBLE, just let go, walk away and experience all that life still has waiting for you. Will get easier to cope now that the weight has been lifted, I promise.

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

ROBERTO M2 years ago