ISA 10: What’s Better Than Happiness and How You Can Get it!
Summary: In this weeks 10th episode of the I Simply Am Podcast I answer listener questions from episode 9 on forgiveness and apologies. In addition, I talk about what's better than happiness and how you can get it. Finally, I give you the weekly ISA Challenge that you can try on your own! Read below for all the show notes and listen to the podcast for the complete show! ISA Q&A Cheyenne Christine Naegler writes in with some questions below (note: I've edited her actual message to format for this post. To read her complete message simply visit the original message on the I Simply Am Facebook page. "A friend of mine has her children respond to other people saying "I'm sorry" with "well, I don't forgive you right now". I've always kinda thought that was a good idea because I felt that forcing children or anyone to apologize wasn't solving anything but rather creates people who accepted whatever happened to them. How does that all play into the forgiveness? We are all taught to apologise for doing something that hurts the other person be it accidentally or on purpose which is really a way for saying Please forgive me", is it not? And is saying "it's OK" another version of "I forgive you"? If it means the same & we are saying we shouldn't seek other's forgiveness nor are we able to truly give it than do we apologise for hurting others?" First, if someone apologizes to us I don’t think it’s necessary to say, “I don’t forgive you right now”. It’s really none of their business if and/or when you ever forgive them because forgiveness is for yourself not for them. I do think it’s appropriate to say, “Thank you” or “I appreciate that”. Letting them know you heard them is important and acknowledges that you’ve done just that. However, saying “thank you” or “I appreciate that” doesn’t mean you’re letting them off the hook either. It’s simply an acknowledgment and you can still choose to not talk to them or spend time with them. To your question regarding replying with an “it’s ok” to an apology? I would only say that if you were truly in a place to do that. Again, forgiveness isn’t for them so it’s just not necessary to say anything other than "Thank you" or "I appreciate that”. My take on forgiveness vs apologizing: Forgiveness is for yourself, apologizing is mostly for the other person. An authentic apology isn’t done to get something in return (i.e.; forgiveness). Apologizing is your way of honoring your fallibility and letting the other person know that your behavior was unacceptable. They may choose to forgive you or they may not but you’re doing the responsible thing by honoring your own goodness. If you’re apologizing just so the other person “forgives” you then you’re acting irresponsible at best and inauthentic and manipulating at worse. Christine: "You mentioned that there are somethings that you just can't forgive or move past I like to believe that we all choose our path for a reason and pull things to us so that we can learn certain lessons & shape ourselves into who we really are. If we are forgiving ourselves & can't really forgive other's than wouldn't that mean that no matter the trauma you were a victim?" Yes and No. When we are traumatized by someone else we are a victim. I was held up at gunpoint many years ago and while handcuffed with a gun in my back I was asked if I wanted to die for the money. In that moment I was a victim. However, for many years after I struggled with a lot of fear. While I wasn’t a victim anymore (i.e.; the gun was only in my back for a few minutes while my fear lasted for years) I became a victim to the fear that I carried. My original point in the podcast is that some people were traumatized so brutally (take for example the 3 women that were kidnapped by Ariel Castro in the US) that even though they are no longer victims to their perpetrators they may always be a victim to those feelings they carry (i.e.; the fear). Obviously,