Better keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you must see the world
~ George Bernard Shaw
I believe we need to be aware of where we find it difficult to accept where we or others are in any given moment. In the rush to make ourself or others feel better, we can rush into reframing a situation and how we feel about it, too early. And we lose a healing opportunity as a result.
Rushing to reframe can have the effect of feeling like we're being shut up, once again. Even worse, is the intimation that these feelings are somehow unacceptable, ugly, or horrible and therefore that makes us unacceptable, ugly or horrible for having them, never mind expressing them. Two of the most damaging ways people can be shut up or shut down is to be shamed for feeling a certain way and/or to have their feelings and experiences minimised. Very often, if not always, the resulting beliefs are:
Shaming: I am wrong.
Minimising: I don't count.
The holy grail in the reframing world seems to be forgiveness. There is a lot of emphasis placed on forgiveness, so if you don't or won't forgive, what does that make you? An angry person? A resentful person? An unforgiving person? Or maybe, just maybe, it makes you a person that hasn't yet healed their hurts. If we put the cart before the horse, we're creating yet another shaming or minimising device with which to punish ourself. Guilt always seeks punishment. My preferred reframe for forgiveness is acceptance, and acceptance is a process or state of mind, it's not a step or steps we have to take to get somewhere or become something to be more acceptable or pleasing to others, or to ourself for that matter. When we can honestly say that we accept ourselves, others and life exactly as we and they are, we probably won't even need to forgive.
I have found from working with people that the very best reframes always come from them, when they are ready. My role is not to push or force them. When their experiences, beliefs and feelings have been witnessed, validated and heard they will start making shifts in how they perceive themselves, others and life. These are deep, lasting and authentic changes from the inside out.