How People Forgive : A Critical Literature Review
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There are many studies about forgiveness and its beneficial effects on physical and psychosocial health. However, there is limited information on how someone can become able to choose forgiveness in their lives and where people get the power to forgive. Our goal is to review scholarly literature to discover how someone can get power to choose forgiveness amid personal suffering and what are the cognitive, emotional, and spiritual characteristics of people who forgive and people who don’t. Forgiveness Facilitation is a well-established nursing intervention. Yet we do not know enough about what enables people to have the power to forgive. Combining knowledge of the traits of people who forgive and how people find power to do so, with specific knowledge of a patient may provide valuable insights as nurses try to facilitate forgiveness with patients who want that. We aim to contribute to the body of nursing knowledge through this critical literature review from peer reviewed sources. We used a range of databases, limiting our search to the last seven years using key words such as “forgiveness”, “forgiveness and empowerment”, and “forgiveness and motivation”. Our research, to date, indicates that people gain the power to forgive through justice, self-affirmation, positive reinterpretation, empathy, mindfulness, and knowledge of benefits. These findings will enable nurses to understand their patients better and facilitate forgiveness by helping patients to find the personal power to forgive and heal.