“If minutes were kept of a family gathering, they would show that members not present and subjects discussed were one and the same.” —Robert Brault
We may joke about family but sometimes they’re no laughing matter. Certain family members can be frustrating at times. It’s not always easy to accept their behavior and attitudes. They may have emotionally wounded you on many occasions. How can you find gratitude for a family member who has never really loved and accepted you? Read on for ways to shift into gratitude, forgiveness and acceptance of all your family members, no matter who they are and what they’ve done.
Everyone Agreed to Play Different Roles
It helps to remember that on a soul level, you deliberately chose each one of your family members. There are very thoughtful reasons behind each choice.
You’re incarnated on Earth primarily for soul growth. Your family members are primed to help you with that development. Everyone is playing a different role specifically designed for soul evolution. Each of you have soul contracts to assist each other with that evolvement.
If you’re a more evolved soul, chances are good that you selected younger souls to be your family. That may explain why you don’t fit in or you’re the “black sheep.” You each have much to teach one another regardless of where you are on the soul-growth spectrum.
If your soul wants you to master forgiveness, you will be born into a family that gives you plenty—plenty!—of opportunities to forgive them. With Oscar-worthy performances by everyone, they will have you triggered by their thoughtlessness and self-absorption.
When your mother criticizes your appearance yet again, she’s just presented you with a pop quiz for a master’s degree in forgiveness. Woohoo! Realize she doesn’t know how to unconditionally love yet because she’s at an earlier stage of development, a younger soul.
It doesn’t matter what she’s doing as much as what you’re doing. She’s operating at her level of evolvement but what about you? Are you reacting as a more advanced soul with compassion and forgiveness? What a fabulous opportunity to get better at responding from your heart instead of your conditioned mind. She’s in your life to teach you how to excel at forgiving. Practice makes perfect. (It helps to keep your sense of humor.)
Family Present You with Endless Opportunities to Grow as a Soul
Family are outstanding at teaching self-love. To master self-love, you’ve got to find love from within no matter what everyone is telling you. Talk about evolved soul lessons! Your family members may have led you to believe you weren’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough, _______ enough. They may be excellent in conditioning you to believe you are unlovable. According to your soul’s intentions, you bought it hook, line and sinker. Well done, everyone!
It’s now time to heal it and recognize exactly who you really are: a Divine luminous being, exactly the way you need to be for this particular lifetime. Can you overcome your distorted perceptions about yourself and deeply love all parts of you? That’s what you signed up for (you’re so brave.) You’re quite capable of mastering this. Don’t let your mind talk you out of it.
The Most Challenging Family Member Has the Most to Teach You
Want to get your Ph.D. in acceptance? Families specialize in that because you can’t get away from family. When your boss drives you nuts, you can quit your job and find a more satisfying work situation, but you can’t really quit your family. You’ve got soul contracts to be a family for a lifetime. That makes it perfect for either accepting your family members and their choices, or giving up your peace of mind and happiness. You choose.
One of the toughest things to endure is watching a loved one make unhealthy choices. On a soul level, your spouse, son, daughter, mother or father may have deliberately chosen to become an addict and/or alcoholic to experience powerlessness and not loving themselves. The learning potential is tremendous for you and them. They are giving you opportunities to engage in deeper levels of non-judgment, compassion and acceptance. It is paramount to have acceptance rather than judgment. You likely have a soul contract to unconditionally love them while they learn to love themselves.
It’s helpful to remember there is nothing wrong with pain. Pain is a powerful catalyst for change. The key is to observe what they are doing but not let your mind get triggered and dragged in emotionally. Let the emotions of fear, frustration, anger rise up and then pass through you. It’s when you grab hold of these negative emotions and engage with them that you get stuck in them.
This is not about rescuing anyone. It is about honoring their choices for their own soul growth in their own way and at their pace. Pay attention to when it’s necessary to set up boundaries out of self-love to avoid exposing yourself to toxic situations.
The most challenging family members are your greatest blessings. Clearly, they have the most to teach you. Feel gratitude for what they are helping you gain mastery over. Maybe because of their role, this is the lifetime your soul can finally check Acceptance off the To-Do List. Somebody deserves a hug for that.