art work by John Ceprano
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Forgive & Forget

Forgive and forget is one of those common statements said to someone after they have been in a conflict. It may be to encourage them to move on, to not be bothered anymore with what occurred, to stop fretting, to let themselves and the other person ‘off the hook’, and so on. Often this expression is stated flippantly though – out of impatience or lack of understanding. It may be said in sympathy and beseechingly.

What about this expression when it comes to conflict mastery?  Sometimes it just doesn’t feel possible to forgive and for some of us there are acts and words done and said in conflict that are, plain and simple, not forgivable. Like other aspects of conflict, there’s no rule about the necessity to forgive and forget and what is forgivable and forgettable depends on each of our own sensibilities – not for others to judge.

The following ConflictMastery™ Quest(ions) invite you to explore some questions within a context of a dispute you have had where you are not forgiving and forgetting something(s) about it.

  • What are you not forgiving and forgetting about the situation?
  • What are you not forgiving and forgetting about the other person?
  • What are you not forgiving and forgetting about yourself in that conflict?
  • What do you want to forgive and forget?
  • What do you want to remember and why?
  • What else may you be holding onto that continues to bother you that you have not mentioned yet?
  • What is possible if you forgive? Don’t forgive?
  • What is possible if you forget? Don’t forget?
  • How possible is it to forgive only or forget only? That is, what difference, if any, would it make if you do one and not the other?
  • What would you do differently if you had the conflict to do over again?

What other ConflictMastery™ Quest(ions) may you add here?

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