The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

NW speaker presents five steps for forgiveness

By Karina Mosqueda/reporter

Forgive and forget — two phrases that go together.

To forgive can be difficult when people have been hurt or mistreated, but embracing forgiveness can be a good thing for peace, hope and health, NW students were told Nov. 12.

NW counselor Lisa Allison presented How to Forgive When You Can’t Forget to help students explore ways to forgive and to begin the road to forgiveness.

“Forgiveness is a process that involves recommitment and concrete actions,” she said.

Allison presented REACH as a five-step process on how to forgive: recall, empathize, altruistic, committing and holding.

“Dr. Everett Worthington, a psychologist, developed this five-step process to really think about and try to move through those steps if you are having a hard time of forgiving someone,” she said.

Recall the events and the hurt as accurately and objectively as possible. Allison suggested writing it out to or talking about it with a trusted friend or family member.

“Acknowledge your own inner pain,” she said.

Empathize to understand what happened from the point of view of the person in order to forgive. One should try to understand whether it was a bad day for the person and then let go of the bitterness, Allison said.

Altruistic can be seen as a gift of forgiveness or a concern for the well-being of others, Allison said
“Think of forgiveness as a gift, to look at it as one, a choice and a gift to yourself and also a gift to the other person,” she said.

Committing to forgiveness is accepting to forgive the event for oneself or the other person. Allison suggested writing a letter of forgiveness that doesn’t have to be sent or telling the person who created the hurt.

Holding on to forgiveness is the final step. With time, memories will come up, Allison said, because forgiving is not forgetting.
“Remind yourself you have made the choice to forgive,” she said. “Forgiveness is an ongoing process.”

Allison said forgiveness has several advantages: less stress, reduced anxiety, reduced depression, increased self-esteem and more hope.

Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian