December 2012

Post image for Moving Forward through Forgiveness – Part 2: 5 Steps to Letting Go and Moving On

What steps can we take to give up a grudge and forgive someone who has hurt, disappointed, or betrayed us

The following strategy model for learning forgiveness is derived from an amalgam of work by several researchers and my own work as a psychologist:

1. Look deeply into the root of your anger or grudge. Explore the situation honestly without embellishing or rearranging the details. Pay attention to how this anger is holding you back and keeping you hostage in your own day-to-day [click to continue…]

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Post image for Moving Forward through Forgiveness – Part 1

“To forgive and forget” is a prevailing idiom in our culture, but for most of us it is hard for us to truly let go and move forward in our lives. When dealing with a conflict, we need to let go of a past hurt, so that we can propel ourselves to a place of higher understanding and loving awareness. Forgiveness means giving up the anger or suffering of the past and being willing to forge ahead with far greater potential for inner freedom. As Mahatma Ghandi once said, “The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”

A stunning example of how forgiveness can transform anger and hurt into healing and peace is the incredible story of DUI awareness advocates Renee Napier and Eric Smallridge. In 2002, [click to continue…]

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Post image for The Intertwined Relationship of Giving and Gratitude

From the time we young, most people recognize that giving gifts feels just as good, if not better than, the gratitude that comes from receiving them. In fact, the exchange of gifts and gratitude is part of what makes this time of year so special to cultures all around the world. The relationship between these two expressions of love is intertwined, a bond that keeps us connected. According to leading gratitude researcher Dr. Robert Emmons, the idea of receiving a gift is central to the experience of gratitude. When we feel deeply grateful, we feel [click to continue…]

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Post image for Strategies for Giving Thanks in the Face of Hardship

The holiday season is a time of joy and a time of stress. The pressure to be exuberant amidst winter’s darkness often leads to a feeling of disconnect for many. This year is especially difficult, as Hurricane Sandy came hurling to the Northeast region leaving the ravages of flooding, loss of power for millions, billions of dollars in damaged homes and businesses, and lost lives. How do we feel grateful in the face of loss?

So many that have faced the devastation of Sandy have also been blessed by the loving kindness of others. The truth is our lives are composed of a constellation of complicated feelings and they come bubbling forth at a time like this, even if [click to continue…]

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Photos directly above by Laura Bergstein, all rights reserved; Portrait Photography of Dr.Randy Kamen by Janet Wolbarst Photography www.janetwolbarst.com