About me, therapy

On cultivating a Forgiving Heart

💔What does Forgiveness look like for you?💔
Cultivating a forgiving heart is surely an endless, slow, deep-reaching and highly transformative process. Sitting with, facing, working with and embracing trauma is hard. Healing is a cyclic process. Transformation can happen suddenly, in a highly insightful moment, and also, and much more often, as a result of committed and long Inner Work.

my heart

Much like a spiral. It circles around the wound creating new meanings, weaving new understandings…

…sometimes we go down that darkness of holding on to the pain, blame, hatred, intolerance. It’s familiar. Feels safe. We aren’t caught off guard.

So we repeat the known and stay with what always worked. Until stagnation takes over. And starts choking tightly around our chest and throat, and heart.

Because forgiveness means acknowledging, seeing what happened to us for exactly what it was. It’s staying with the TRUTH and accepting that our past won’t change.

Forgiveness means Keeping our eyes open and staring into our bleeding hearts.

Forgiveness also means knowledge. Full knowing of what happened, who hurt us, how it hurt us, where it hurt us…where did the pain calcify, and how we now stay IN that calcified version of ourselves…and USE it, quite unconsciously, to stay small, alone, isolated.

Forgiveness means creativity, spaciousness, freedom and lightness. Note, it is not accepting, supporting or rewarding a harmful behavior. It is not agreeing and condoning trauma, hurt, abuse, neglect.

Forgiveness means once you recognize all this, to not run away.

Running away takes the form of all addictions. Not only drugs, alcohol, but also overeating, shopping, sex, Netflix binge…all those things we do to escape. To not look. To not hold tight and steady.

Instead, pain benefits from being approached with the meticulous attention of an archaeologist who had just stumbled upon a fragile mummified and so very ancient object (much like our pains, an object deeply deposited inside).

Look at it with curiosity. With child spirit eyes. See what IT needs to tell you. Wait. Be patient. Open up. Extend a little leaf that way…

Healing is not a rushed process but a masterly crafted slow-brewed concoction of attention, curiosity, care, embracing, understanding love, and ultimately mending of your heart.

And it’s best done with the gentle holding of capable hands 🤲🏼.

Hands and hearts that have been there. That know the darkness, the bleeding heart and have walked the path themselves. That know mending but don’t mend you. They serve as a river.

They carry a torch alongside. You will know them by not knowing, but sensing…

Contact me if this feels right and a little valve pulled inside your 🖤


Aleksandra Staneva, PhD is a SoulWork Psychotherapist in Brisbane, Australia

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