Grudges are exhausting-and I know this from firsthand experience. By staying angry at someone for some real or perceived slight, it simply drains us of our joy and precious energy that we could be directing towards more meaningful pursuits.
Just recently, I encountered a situation where the temptation to stay angry was yet again rearing its ugly head. And yet, after sitting with my new friend Myk after listening to a lecture where forgiveness was among the talking points, he hit me over the head (figuratively, of course) with how he approaches forgiveness. Simply put, when it comes to forgiving others, and I quote: “There is nothing to forgive.”
There is nothing to forgive. Those five little words shattered everything I thought forgiveness to be.
As I have grown, I have begun to learn to let people off the hook by saying to myself that this person was simply doing what they knew how to do with the knowledge they had at the time, and that if they had known better, they would have done better-or, so I hope. Adopting this has enabled me to let go of so many toxic grudges that I had held onto for years, and for that I am grateful.
Myk, however, took things one step further. In so many words, he wasn’t talking about letting people off the hook. He was talking about eliminating the hook altogether. Now that is radical.
Maya Angelou once said ““Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Thank you, Myk; in your own way you’ve managed to teach me better so that I can do just that.