When others have done us wrong and we choose to forgive them, this is forgiving kindness. Forgiveness was briefly mentioned previously but is so important that it should be reiterated and expanded on. We forgive not only because it is kind, but also because keeping grudges and holding onto anger will destroy us from within. Resentments and anger are toxic to the human spirit and leads us away from a life of kindness and grace.

Forgiveness does not mean we must forget or continue relationships – some people are toxic, some continuously create drama, others repeatedly engage in behaviors that call their character into question. It is simply not kind to oneself to continue to associate with people who repeatedly cause drama or repeatedly engage in destructive behavior (i.e. repeatedly cheat on you, abuse drugs, etc). I find it easiest to forgive others when I can accept where they are at in their life, right now. After all – I cannot change others – they have to change themselves. So I accept where others are at right now – with all of their flaws – and hope others can do the same to me. However, if others in my life repeatedly show a lack of integrity (i.e. lie, cheat on me, steal, abuse drugs, etc.) then I feel it is kind to myself to cut those persons out of my life if they are not truly striving to change. It is regretful but we sometimes have to let others go for our own sanity – and this is an act of kindness to ourselves. We do not owe anyone our time when they repeatedly treat us badly.

Ron Hill