the benefits of forgiveness

>> April 9, 2009

"To err is human; to forgive, divine." Alexander Pope
Forgiveness comes with benefits.

Someone once said that when you refuse to forgive another person, the bitterness only eats away at YOU. It doesn't bother them - at least not the way you'd like.

According to scientific studies in 2001 and 2003, choosing to forgive brings a number of physical and emotional health benefits as well:
  • Decreased anger and negative thoughts
  • Decreased anxiety
  • Decreased depression and grief
  • Decreased vulnerability to substance use
Another article indicates:
Forgiveness is good for your heart -- literally. One study from the Journal of Behavioral Medicine found forgiveness to be associated with lower heart rate and blood pressure as well as stress relief. This can bring long-term health benefits for your heart and overall health.

A later study found forgiveness to be positively associated with five measures of health: physical symptoms, medications used, sleep quality, fatigue, and somatic complaints. It seems that the reduction in negative affect (depressive symptoms), strengthened spirituality, conflict management and stress relief one finds through forgiveness all have a significant impact on overall health.

A third study, published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, found that forgiveness not only restores positive thoughts, feelings and behaviors toward the offending party (in other words, forgiveness restores the relationship to its previous positive state), but the benefits of forgiveness spill over to positive behaviors toward others outside of the relationship. Forgiveness is associated with more volunteerism, donating to charity, and other altruistic behaviors. (And the converse is true of non-forgiveness.)

So, let's be healthy girls - and get our forgiveness on!


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


CLUTCHtalk on Facebook


Copy and Paste Code


  © Blogger template Simple n' Sweet by 2009

Back to TOP