7 Ways to Move Past Hate
Martin Luther King once said that “Hate is too great a burden to bear”, and this proves to be true even after a great loss. We all know that sometimes don’t work out – marriages, intimate relationships, and friendships.
Hate is most often steeped in the idea that we have been personally wronged by the opposite party but harboring these thoughts and spending time with them weighs us down.
There is good news though: you have the power to change the way you think, react and deal with these emotions.
As attorneys who handle divorce, separation, and child custody cases every day, we often find ourselves lending an ear to clients about their feelings as well.
Today, we will share 7 simple ways to move past your hate and tolift the burden that it brings.
Tip # 1: Consider the WHY.
We should always first consider why we feel that this person has wronged us. In considering why, we should ask ourselves whether the offense was truly harsh enough to cause an intense dislike for that person. If not, this should be reason enough to lift the burden.
Tip # 2: Keep yourself busy.
Find things that make you happy and go after that happiness. Get back to your yoga class, call that old colleague for lunch. Do whatever it is you need to get back your happy, so that you are not weighed down by hate.
Tip # 3: Change your outlook.
Sometimes in anger we look at a situation through frost colored glasses. Changing our entire outlook on a situation tends to change our attitude. When you change your attitude about a situation you change the attitude of your heart. If you can do that, you will be more willing to forgive and lift the heavy burden of hate.
Tip # 4: Look on the bright side.
We know that losing a relationship with someone you’ve put your trust in is especially hard because it can feel like you’re losing a piece of yourself. But, don’t forget that this also means that you’ve removed someone from your inner circle who probably didn’t deserve your trust- someone who didn’t have your back. Now that this potentially toxic person is out of your life, you will have time and space to truly live your best life. Bounce back stronger than ever! You now have space and time to heal yourself from the wreckage that was that relationship. This also means that you’ve cleared space for someone who deserves your time and your love .
Tip # 5: Just FAKE it.
When you fake happiness and contentment for long enough, the chemicals in your brain can change. Eventually, you will actually start to believe what you’re showing on the outside and then you’ll start to feel it.
Tip # 5: Practice gratitude.
Any time you catch yourself focusing on the hate or anger, immediately stop and try to name 3 things you’re grateful for in that moment. At the end of your gratitude list, you will have changed your focus and let go of the hate you were feeling in that moment. Now, you have regained control over your day and can move forward in peace. You can do this as many times as you need to throughout your day. The more you practice gratitude, the less control hate will have over you.
Tip # 6: Write a Letter.
For a lot of people, strong emotions are not something they like to keep to themselves. Before you upset your divorce attorney by posting all about your feelings on Facebook or sharing nasty quotes about your ex on Instagram, write it down in private. Before you tell your friends for the 16th time how you feel about it, write it down in private. Before you call your mom for the 8th time today, write it down in private. Write a letter addressed to that person and write down the feelings you may not have been able to express to that person directly. It allows you to safely deal with your emotions in a safe space while releasing the weight that is hate.
Note: If I am your divorce lawyer, I will always tell you NOT to send the letter to anyone.
Tip # 7: Forgive
My mother once said that “forgiveness is for you, not for the other person.” This was after a nasty break up. At the time, I could not fathom the idea of forgiving my ex. She was right. I stopped thinking about how terrible he was or wondering if he would ever change. Through forgiveness, I was able to refocus on my goals and my life. Instead of focusing on my hate, forgiveness allowed me to move on and make sure history didn’t repeat itself.