This whole site is about avoiding the toxins in our cosmetics and food and household products. But the truth is, the most toxic thing in the world – unforgiveness – is not so easy to dodge. If only forgiving people and letting go of the pain was as convenient as throwing out an old lipstick and ordering a nice new organic one online. I have to be honest, I didn’t have a forgiving bone in my body until this year at the ripe old age of 32. And ironically, it only came about because I had been so wounded and suffered so much loss that I decided that enough was enough. I was no longer going to carry what didn’t need to be carried.
A lot of literature will tell you that forgiveness is simply a choice you have to make. And it is, to a degree. You must choose to forgive but then get on with the work of forgiving. I can’t tell you what your journey to forgiveness looks like. For me, it involved physically boxing out my anger. For two whole years. Then when my anger ran out of steam I went to God. I read everything He had to say about forgiveness in the Bible. I prayed. I gave Him my pain to deal with and He did. I asked Him to change my heart and He did. Whatever your beliefs may or may not be, there is help for you out there. There is a book that will change your life. Or a conversation. Or a song. Keep looking until you find it. The work is worth it, I promise.
Unforgiveness Makes You Sick
Withholding forgiveness is like allowing a tumour to spread aggressively through our body while ignoring the necessary treatment to eradicate it. But what if caused more than a just metaphorical tumour? According to Dr. Steven Standiford, chief of surgery at the Cancer Treatment Centres of America, refusing to forgive makes people sick and keeps them sick. This is why he has been using forgiveness therapy to help treat diseases, such as cancer.
Of all cancer patients, 61% have forgiveness issues, and of those, more than half are severe, according to research by Dr. Michael Barry, author of the book, The Forgiveness Project. Unforgiveness leads to chronic anxiety which leads to excess adrenaline and cortisol. These deplete the production of natural killer cells which are your body’s weapons against cancer. Dr. Barry says most people don’t realise what a burden anger and hatred were until they let them go.
Unforgiveness Is Ugly
Withholding forgiveness can make us feel good, even righteous, for a time. But eventually, even our sense of righteousness transforms into deep-rooted bitterness and there isn’t a foundation or concealer that will be able to cover it up. We’ve all met those people who are seething with bitterness and hatred. I’m not sure there is anything less attractive.
Unforgiveness also certainly affects the body’s physical beauty. The stress it produces affects skin, hair, fingernails, digestion and sleep patterns. Stress-induced production of adrenaline and cortisol, has a significant damaging effect on the skin. The cell renewal process of the skin occurs every 28 days but slows as we age, causing wrinkles and dry skin. Stress slows that process even further, speeding up the ageing process.
The stress hormones also affect digestion, preventing the absorption of needed vitamins from food. Vitamin B deficiency can cause hair loss. Vitamin deficiency also causes gum disease and allows fingernails to become brittle or causes nail biting, further affecting growth.
The Most Inspiring Story Of Forgiveness
Every time I watch this I am left speechless. It’s not even four minutes long. Just watch it.
The capacity this woman has to forgive puts us all to shame. There are so many amazing stories of forgiveness out there. Seek them out, it will remind you that it is possible, regardless of what you are needing to forgive.
This is my last post until the New Year as I am taking the wonderful opportunity this time of year offers to determine the negative things that I want to leave in 2017 and the amazing things I want to bring into 2018.
Wishing you and your families a peaceful Christmas xxx
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- Unforgiveness Is More Toxic Than Anything You Could Eat Or Put On Your Face - December 18, 2017