Betrayal. What is it really?

My experience is that betrayal is when one person does something to another that affects them and they do it without regard to the impact that it has. In other words, their action is self-serving. The impact can be devastating in many ways, depending on their act. For sure, one impact is an experience of being hurt, disregarded and diminished. It doesn’t feel good. Other potential impacts include other relationship issues, loss of money, loss of trust and a disdain for that person. I am sure, if you have ever been betrayed, you can list many other impacts.

How do you get over it, you might wonder? It takes a bit of work, but it is possible to get past it, and even be grateful.

To get past it, you must first get that whatever happened, happened and you cannot go back and change that.

Ruminating about what happened, suffering over it, railing about the act doesn’t change anything. In fact, when something like this happens, our brains get threatened and begin secreting the hormones associated with the fight, flight, freeze or appease response. Then our limbic systems in our brains bring back all the old hard and painful memories. Know what I mean? You dredge up all the other times when you felt betrayed and you are very upset. You might even make some conclusions about people which are not empowering.

I think knowing this is helpful because you can get yourself clear about what actually happened separate from all the upsetting information your brain dredged up. That stuff is the BS we use to keep ourselves upset.

Next, and this is the hard part…. Consider that person did what they did because in their view, it was the logical thing to do. I know that is challenging, but in all the thousands of people I have coached, I have found this to be the case in nearly all incidences. People do what is logical for them. I know you wouldn’t have done it that way, but for them, it made sense. Ok?

Then when you see it from their point of view and you understand it was logical for them, forgive them. They did what they did because they thought it was the right action. It impacted you. They did not see that, or consider that. Yes, that sucks, but, that is what they did. When you forgive them, you release yourself out of the bondage of holding onto the resentment and anger. You get free.

There also might be a need to forgive yourself. Look to see if you ignored a sign, or stepped over something or did not take an action that might have made a difference in whatever they did. If you see that, forgive yourself. Let yourself get free.

Lastly-gratitude. What did you learn? I always recommend taking the time to learn lessons from everything that does not go the way I want it to. I am grateful for the lessons and they have created me as I am today.

Write out what you are grateful for and the lessons you learned. Give yourself freedom and grace.