Aging, Forgiveness and the Quest to Be a Better Person

(Apologies to those of you who came to read about life in Panama, today I’m just a titch philosophical.)

Isla Iguana

Now, I know that my practical mind (y mi mama’s) looks at the title of this post and instantly says; “Phhhhhfffff!”  But in my evolution to become a better person, who is not so critical of others, I’ve began reading a lot of books that I’ve owned for a while and just browsed through in my busy former life.  I don’t want to call them self-help books, but books that delve into what a good life should be and how to find peace within myself.  The last two weeks I haven’t been too good at working toward my goal.  I’ve been hyper critical of most things that I see around me and so yesterday I sat back and had another one of those “Ah ha!” moments.

I’d like to blame my grumpy emotions on hormones (apologies to my male readers) or the rain and maybe that’s a good excuse.  Or not, because there really is no excuse for me running off at mouth and being grumpy.  Sometimes it’s just best to sit back and observe.  And sometimes I should follow my advice.

I found a website quite a while ago called Marc and Angel Hack Life.  I think it’s a  popular site for those of us who are trying to make our way in the world without causing too much damage along the way.  I know at least one of mis amigas reads it.  Occasionally I’ll find something inspiring on the blog and I’ll repost it to Facebook, but yesterday the topic of forgiveness resonated with me and I had to explore it a little further.  Particularly because the story begins in a yoga class and I’ve returned to yoga practice, something that I immensely enjoyed a long time ago at a fairly stressful time in my life and now I am enjoying again, simply for the pleasure of it.  And I’m wondering if all the twisting and bending and looking inward is bringing up some anger and emotions that have been dormant and pushed away for a while.

If you’ve continued reading this post thus far then you really should go read the full text on Marc and Angel’s site.  But to summarize the ten points that were made, here they are:

Forgiveness allows us to take responsibility for our own happiness: Most of what we attract into our lives is a mere reflection of what is inside of us; 

Forgiveness allows us to see everyone in our lives as a teacher: Family members, spouses, friends, bosses, etc. – everyone is brought into our lives to teach us more about ourselves; 

Forgiveness helps us stop playing the victim card: Adjusting your perspective to a place of forgiveness and gratitude allows you to no longer play the victim card; 

Forgiveness makes us aware that most people are doing the best they can: Have compassion for where other people are in their lives; 

Forgiveness forces our own level of consciousness to expand: The process of growth is continuous; 

Forgiveness teaches us to keep our expectations tempered: We should never be expecting anything from anyone; 

Forgiveness teaches us to tone down our instincts for self-preservation: Too often we injure one another simply because we are trying to protect ourselves (financially, emotionally, etc.), even when it’s at someone else’s expense;

Forgiveness creates a space to let go and love: Not everyone and every situation is meant to be a part of our lives forever; and 

Forgiveness is the best revenge: A bit of sarcasm in this one, but it’s so true.  You can always seek revenge positively by creating a better future for yourself.  

Sarah Anne Stewart

Imagine what our world would be like if we practiced just a little forgiveness every day. My intent is not to promote naivety but to take a look some of the harm I may have caused that has been purely unintentional.  To take a look and see if there is something that I’m holding on to that is causing me harm.  To ask forgiveness from those that believe I have caused them harm.   Today, I choose to remember that we are all only human, with human faults and emotions.  And today I’ll practice forgiveness and tomorrow hopefully a little more forgiveness.  And I’ll keep trying to do it until it becomes automatic.  I want to share my forgiveness with all of you because life is too short to hold on to past resentments and because today, life is pretty darn good in the campo.

Read, share, discuss.  And pass it on.


About indacampo

You'll find me at blogging about Panama...and other things.
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8 Responses to Aging, Forgiveness and the Quest to Be a Better Person

  1. Forgiveness is such an important part of Happiness – I’m glad you shared this post, and the Mark and Angel Hack site, which is lovely and inspiring.

    • indacampo says:

      Gracias a todo! I love to share the wonderful writing and thoughts of others that make me step back and go, hmmm. And also, thank you for reading. 🙂

  2. banjaxd says:

    Hi, what a great post. It definitely gave me pause for thought. I had just read another blog, “One more good adventure” and in his most recent post he posted about something that had come across in facebook. I’m not sure how to do links so I have copied and pasted the bit that I found most interesting and has some relevance to your post:

    “I asked her for a piece of advice. She reached in her purse, pulled out a piece of paper, and handed it to me. It said this:

    Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good. Life is too short– enjoy it. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present and the future. It’s OK to let your children see you cry.
    Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. If a relationship has to be secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
    Take a deep breath, it calms the mind. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. It’s never too late to be happy. But it’s all up to you and no one else. When it comes time to go after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer. Burn the nice candles, use the nice sheets, wear the nice lingerie, wear the nice clothes. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
    Over prepare, then go with the flow. No one is in charge of your happiness but you. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: ‘In five years will this matter?’ Always choose life. Forgive but don’t forget. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time. However good or bad a situation is, it will change. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
    If we all threw our problems in a pile and we saw everyone else’s, we’d grab our’s back. Envy is a waste of time. Accept what you already have, not what you need. Yield. Friends are the family we choose. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.”

    Hope you don’t mind me copying this here, it’s just that within the space of ten minutes I read two blogs that made me stop and think!

    I have been following your blog for some time now in my search for information on what life is like for an expat in Panama. Keep up the good work and thanks for opening a window into your life in Panama.

    Cheers, Kevin.

    • indacampo says:

      Wow, thank you for sharing! And for revealing yourself. 🙂 I too read “One More Good Adventure” so I quickly ran over there to read the whole thing. I have to agree, it’s been an inspirational day all around.

      I hope that my blatherings have been helpful in some way!

  3. Wow! Powerrful words that I really needed to hear!! Even though I’m far away geographically from people or situations that have been challanging for me , forgiveness is the answer to letting go of negative feelings that dont promote the healthy, loving life I strive to embrace each day. Thank you for the reminder and for the link to such a great blog!! I for one am glad you mixed it up today!! Cheers, Mi Amiga!! 🙂

    • indacampo says:

      Gracias. And I have been reading with interest about your lecciones de español. Poco a poco, it will come with time. And just think, you have time! 🙂

  4. Kris says:

    I think when you stop trying to grow and be a better person, you may as well hang it up. I admire you and support you on your path. Thank you for the reminder to keep myself focused on the bigger picture as well. Thank you for giving me a lot to think about today, and for the website link 🙂

    • indacampo says:

      De nada! I love the interweb…it can usually giving me a starting place for looking deeper inside myself. 🙂

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