With “Forgiveness: How to Make Peace With Your Past and Get on With Your Life,” Dr. Sydney B. Simon and Suzanne Simon team up to provide a process to help readers work through all the stages of hurt. Using this guide, many individuals have found the ability to forgive the wrongdoings of others, with or without an apology, and move toward healing. This book turns painful experiences into lessons and even assets that can improve a person’s future. All you need to start this journey into recovery is a strong desire for peace of mind.
When you learn to overcome anger and resentment for your own sake, you can take power back and make some much-needed changes. With each turn of the page, the authors pose some questions that readers need to answer before they can move forward on the path to forgiveness. Many of the concepts in this guide draw from the widely known 12-step programs. Readers discover that everyone progresses through the same six stages of healing, which the authors list as denial, self-blame, victimhood, indignation, survival, and integration. The goal is to reach that final stage but also to acknowledge each previous stage as you pass through it.
The tone of the writing is far from dismissive: You will feel validated as you confront your feelings of loss and betrayal. However, the work involved in this journey is not easy. Plus, you may need to use your imagination if the person whom you need to forgive is not a family member. The authors have tailored their message to domestic situations, such as divorce, adoption, and untimely deaths. However, these lessons can apply to nearly any source of grief at any life stage. You may even find yourself coming back to the book’s teachings throughout your life.