They say it’s divine to forgive people who hurt you- even your enemies. Yet, no one tells you how to do it, nor is there a quick recipe to block out memories and thoughts.

There definitely is no “magic wand” of forgiveness that can be waved to delete all the hurt, grief or betrayal. They also say think nice thoughts about those who caused you to have all these feelings in the first place.

How do you see the best in people acting their worst?

But what happens when you’re alone, and nice thoughts are more like hot tears of sheer disappointment, anger and resentment? We’re supposed to see the best in people, but how do you do it? How do you see the best in people acting their worst? How do find the best in a person when they have shattered every “nice” thought you've ever had of them?

How does one see the beauty in the beast?

How I wish there was such a thing as a “neuralyser”, like the one Agent J and K use in the Men in Black movies to wipe the slate clean.

In most cases, it’s easy to remove difficult people from your life. You cut them off, burn the bridge and delete them on all social platforms.

Sometimes, that’s exactly the right thing to do. BUT, on the other hand, although they may not be physically present, their facade remains ingrained your mind. 

EVERY person has some redeeming qualities. Mother Theresa said, “Everybody has something good inside them. Some hide it, some neglect it, but it is there.”

We create a “box” where all these “written off” people reside and store it at the back of our minds, so that they don’t re-ignite those feelings of heartache. When something impacts your life that will always be a reminders of what not to engage in again, you don’t need people who have done damage to rain on your parade.

This is like a full-time job. So I guess we have to find a way of dealing with the people who have caused all these emotions, thoughts and feelings.

EVERY person has some redeeming qualities. Mother Theresa said, “Everybody has something good inside them. Some hide it, some neglect it, but it is there.

I know it’s hard to imagine that EVERYONE has something good. This would mean that terrorists, criminals, etc., all have “good” in them, which is a bitter and hard pill to swallow.

So, we will live with the thought that everyone is basically good, but some are really, really twisted and has bad traits and behaviours. Hence, the many strange choices that they make.

You can know someone for 20 years or 2 months and not really know them at all.

When I was younger, I took everything at face value. With flowers in my hair and rose tinted glasses, I was carefree and unperturbed. Now, let’s just say that as I am growing “wiser and not older”, I find that I am learning more life lessons. 

Now, raw honesty inspires me more than anything; people who have touched nerves within me and left the harshest reminders of how to be when allowing people into my space. 

I will question why, what’s your motive, who are you when the mask is off. Now it’s real and I am much worldlier. Maybe all these experiences have left me a little hardheaded and worn-out, but still brave enough to allow you a chance to prove you are worthy of my trust. I still try to give you the benefit of the doubt, but more cautiously. 

I have switched gears. It’s always been about the other person/s. I came last on the list. For so long, I have had to walk on eggshells, put filters in place when I wanted to say what was on my mind and swallow my words. At the heart of it, the lesson throughout 2016 has been about me; what I have learnt about myself. 

WE need to protect ourselves yet still be open to the new encounters without blinkers. It makes us better people to stretch beyond the safety of those people who ignited us.

Read more: Are you ready to face harsh realities about yourself?

Life is a school and dynamics of people are the faculty. Those interactions are the lessons which we have to attend. Show up, learn the lesson and pass! So, I have learnt that I cannot “bunk” the class.

I have to be in class in order to graduate. The lesson could be easy or difficult, but then again, what’s considered difficult is SO subjective. There will always be monsters all around us. It’s how we meander and stop the monsters before they slay us. We have to survive the onslaught.

The most important lesson of all is that people are complex. You will meet those with all sorts of conflicting motives. They will hurt you, leave you bleeding on the sidewalk and drive off. From the infamous Bond movies: I am shaken but not stirred.  I am still unpretentious, battle-scarred, prone to shock you by saying the things you’re thinking, willing to see things most people turn away from, and cranky.

YET, I still want the brutal honesty. It may be disarming but beautiful in its own way. 

This is me, no apologies. Forgiveness is divine but never forget your lessons. WE need to protect ourselves yet still be open to the new encounters without blinkers. It makes us better people to stretch beyond the safety of those people who ignited us.

The question will always remain- but how do you find the beauty in the beast?

Learn to take charge of your life:

Why we should all be (unapologetically) assertive

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