Skills

Let’s be honest, how many times have we claimed forgiveness on someone but still hold small, bitter grudges? “Forgive and forget” – a phrase coined many years ago that means to, well, forgive and forget whatever dishonorable thing a particular person has said or done to you in order to continue the relationship you’ve always had. It’s no secret it almost always seems as if forgiveness were “mission impossible.” If this happens to be your case, my piece of advice is: don’t forgive a person for them, forgive them for you. Holding grudges has many negative effects. By offering forgiveness you can do yourself a huge favor.

There is a great amount of power that comes with forgiveness. Although it is an undeniably tough thing to actually do, it can also be incredibly cathartic. I have found that there are three stages to forgiveness:

  1. The initial feeling of vulnerability: betrayal/loss/pain, the splurge of reactive emotions: passive aggressive or aggressive attitudes that derive from anger and/or denial, etc.
  2. Acceptance of the situation which can terminate or pause the relationship as you begin to assess the facts and multiple objective points of views.
  3. And finally, permanently moving on with or without that person in your life with forgiveness or tightly held grudges.

Keep in mind that forgiveness does not mean that the person needs to continue to be in your life. It is possible to forgive a person but respectfully reestablish the bounds of the relationship by talking out what the expectations were, what has been failed to be done, and how to improve it or help the person understand that in order for you to forgive them, the relationship must come to an end. “Isn’t that not forgiveness?” I think to myself. But forgiveness comes in many forms. It comes through love, through helplessness, and through peace.

Peace of mind is something that comes with forgiveness. If you have truly forgiven the person, you will feel a sense of serenity and wholeness. And it is perfectly acceptable if this is a process that may take you time – a week, a month, or even a year. According to experts, forgiveness can bring you lower blood pressure, increase spirituality, a positive mindset, altruistic behaviors, increase your immune system, and relieve stress. Overall, it is a big plus for your physical and psychological self. Take the time you need to harmonize yourself with reality and let go. This all begins with acceptance of the truth of the situation and essentially, the world. Life requires we climb impossible mountains, cross never ending misty rivers, and survive the most catastrophic storms. As corny as this may sound, you must remember that the universe will only give you what it knows you can handle.

People make mistakes – you and I both included – and sometimes we simply need to let go of the things in the past, the things that we cannot control. Holding these grudges are only doing us harm and the only way to feel at peace and grow from the experiences we encounter is to accept the sitution and move on. Although difficult, forgiveness is possible. I encourage you to at least try and to at least take the first few steps of courage in your journey of forgiveness, because you don’t know just how far even that can take you.

Image: Gratisography

EducationSkills

Whether you are preparing living situations for college next year or searching for a roommate to share rent with post-graduation, you will most likely encounter an array of roommate types. One type you might have is someone who is not used to sharing a room. This person may be an only child, or they may have another sibling who is either significantly older or of the opposite sex so they have never shared anything with that person. My roommate is the latter. Though I am very close with my roommate, I understand that living with me was initially a culture shock for her. We started out with some issues we had to work through, and from personal experience I say you need to tread carefully in these situations.

Roommates can be incredibly friendly and fun to be around, however they might not always understand the concept of compromising. For example, my roommate made a very bad habit of staying up late and coming to bed in the early morning. She was not out doing crazy things, she was just socializing with some friends down the hall – watching Netflix and playing video games for example. Nevertheless, she frequently would come in boisterously and turn on lights as she prepared for bed. This was problematic because it usually woke me up in the middle of my sleeping cycle and made me exhausted the next day. Do not be afraid to confront issues such as these. However, make sure you do so cautiously.

When confronting issues that you experience, be sure to be Socratic. Being Socratic – i.e. utilizing the Socratic method – means that instead of taking an aggressive stance when you confront and debate any problem, you should be willing to suggest resolutions with a calm stature and ask your roommate questions to find a solution together. Instead of demanding a curfew, you could suggest one or even ask your roommate ways they can avoid waking you up late at night.

All in all, people can usually be reasoned with, and when it came to my roommate I learned that sitting and discussing the issue was the best solution to any problem that arose. Do not shy away from making your living conditions more comfortable for yourself, but remember to be respectful of your roommate as well – you both have to live within these four walls.

Image: Gratisography