Many people seize the New Year as an opportunity to make improvements and (for some) radical changes in several aspects of their lives. They join gyms, beef up their reading material, enroll in cooking classes, or begin meditating. But one of the most fundamental ways to improve your life, self-improvement experts argue, is by leaving behind past aggression and resentment. These books on forgiveness explore the transformative power of making peace with friends and family and setting aside long-standing antagonism.
Bestselling Christian author Joyce Meyer takes a faith-oriented approach to forgiveness in Do Yourself a Favor…Forgive. In closely examining the roots of anger and resentment and demonstrating how faith can help resolve negative feelings, she reveals how forgiving yourself and the people in your life can lead to higher self-esteem and a healthier emotional state overall.
Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh draws on the practice of mindfulness and meditation to lay out a plan for physically and mentally letting go of hostility. His wisdom is based on the idea that anger and resentment reside in the body, and that calming yourself—through meditation and breathing exercises—can help open the door to forgiveness.
3. Let It Go
Pastor and bestselling author T.D. Jakes models his guide to forgiveness on the Lord’s Prayer, but his discussions of anger and communication contain a humor and humanity that will appeal to all readers. With chapters on everything from dealing with insults to overcoming hostility with kindness, Jakes teaches readers how to turn the other cheek.
Psychologist and forgiveness researcher Frederic Luskin presents the science and health benefits of absolving others in Forgive for Good. Drawing on case studies and tested forgiveness methods, he explores resentment and forgiveness as psychological and bodily phenomena that can affect overall health.