What I Learned About Forgiveness

Elle Smith



Speaking from personal experience, the whole concept of forgiveness was something that made me absolutely crazy, and I didn’t really apply it until I was in my 30s…because I had absolutely no choice.


I thought that holding a grudge was going to make the other person “feel” my hold on the grudge. I suffered with so many different things as a result of holding on to that grudge. Sleepless nights, headaches, loss of appetite, weight loss, and the list goes on and on. It wasn’t until I made a conscious decision to sit down and think about what was really going on with me, that I started to feel better. I realized that while I was hurting, the person that I was holding a grudge against was more than likely sleeping quite well at night.


Want to know how I conquered the concept of forgiveness? Here you go…


  1. PRAYER. The person who I was angry with really did a number on my heart, and it took me some time to get over everything that had happened in that situation. But I tell you what…praying, journaling, and sitting still helped me to lift that burden off of my shoulders. I legit started to feel better when I talked out loud to God, my source of strength, about my struggles.
  2. GIVING MYSELF PERMISSION TO LET IT GO. Hear me. I had beat myself up long enough over the fact that for years, I had spent my life doing what I thought would yield me the result that I wanted, but it took a “close call” that woke me all the way up, letting me know that it wasn’t the result that I needed. Once I figured out that I was given a second, third, even a millionth chance to see what God was trying to say to me, I had to “let it go.” Once I forgave myself for what I thought was a “waste of my time,” I was able to freely accept what I was supposed to learn—“if it doesn’t freely open, it’s not your door.”
  3. FORGIVENESS REALLY IS FOR ME. I had to go through the motions with that painful ordeal; I had to go through the sleepless nights, headaches, loss of appetite, etc., to realize that to forgive someone means to “free someone.” You free them; you free yourself. You forgive them for whatever it is, you ALSO forgive yourself. It’s a strange phenomenon, but forgiveness is for YOUR freedom. And they never have to know that you have forgiven them…because if they happen to “check up” on you, they will find that you proceeded to live without them. Once I forgave the individual who caused the pain in my own life, I started a Digital Marketing firm, started getting called for speaking engagements, and received so many opportunities that were being blocked because of the grudge I was holding. I never want to block my own blessings so I have to forgive in order to receive what is due to me!


So who is forgiveness REALLY for? YOU. Don’t think that you have to suffer just because the situation may hurt. Be intentional about the decision to forgive. Trust me; it works.



Visit Elle’s Digitial Marketing Firm on Instagram at @ellesdigitalagency_, and learn more about Chicago Black Restaurant Week at @officialchicagobrw. Website and additional contact information is included on those pages.

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