Step 1: Commit yourself to heal all the way to the source of the pain. This means turning inward and coming to know your wounds.
Step 2: Once ‘inside,’ identify your wounds. Have they become a ‘wound power’ within your present life? If you have converted your wounds into power, confront why you might fear healing. As you identify your wounds, have someone ‘witness’ them and their influence upon your development. You need at least one person, a therapist or a friend perhaps, who is capable of working with you in this way.
Step 3: Once you have verbalized your wounds, observe how you use them to influence or even control the people around you as well as yourself. Do you ever say you are not feeling well because of them in order to cancel an appointment, for instance, when in fact you are feeling fine?
Do you ever give yourself permission to quit something, or not try at all, by dwelling on your past and therefore encouraging depression? Are you afraid choosing to heal yourself will require you to leave behind some or much of your familiar life? These are questions you need to address honestly because they are the most significant cluster of reasons that people fear becoming healthy. Don’t be afraid to seek therapeutic help in getting through this step, or any of the others.
Step 4: Identify the good that can and has come from your wounds. Maybe telling your experience has helped another person. Start living within the consciousness of appreciation and gratitude for your deepening wisdom, and if you have to — ‘fake it until you make it.’ Initiate a spiritual practice and stick to it. Do not be casual about your spiritual discipline. Plan your meditation or quiet time.
Step 5: Once you have established the consciousness of appreciation, you can take on the challenge of forgiveness. As appealing as forgiveness is in theory, it is an extremely unattractive personal action for most people, mainly because the true nature of forgiveness remains misunderstood.
Forgiveness is not the same as telling the person who harmed you, ‘It’s okay,’ which is more or less the way most people view it. Rather, forgiveness is a complex act of consciousness, one that liberates the psyche and soul from the need for personal vengeance and the perception of oneself as a victim. More than releasing from blame the people who caused our wounds, forgiveness means releasing the control that the perception of victimhood has over our psyches.
The liberation that forgiveness generates comes in the transition to a higher state of consciousness — not just in theory, but energetically and biologically. In fact, the consequence of a genuine act of forgiveness borders on the miraculous.
Step 6: Think love. Live in appreciation and gratitude. Invite change into your life, if only through your attitude. And remind yourself continually of the message of all spiritual masters worth their salt: keep your spirit in the present time. In the language of Jesus, ‘Leave the dead and get on with your life. God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.’ And as Buddha taught, ‘There is only now.’
Anatomy of the Spirit, The Seven Stages of Power and Healing, Caroline Myss, PH.D., p. 214-216.