Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing Mary Hayes Grieco, author of Unconditional Forgiveness. Mary Hayes Grieco has taught her powerful method of forgiveness in a wide variety of venues since 1990. With her background in psychology, and her ten years of intensive personal training with Dr. Edith Stauffer PhD, Mary has refined her method of forgiveness, as well as the way it is taught in workshops, making this life-changing process accessible to everyone. This consistently effective program has transformed thousands of lives. Her new book,  Unconditional Forgiveness, offers equal doses of humor, compassion, and clarity, as she walks readers through each of the Eight Steps to Freedom to heal an emotional issue. By following this unique how-to guide, you'll be bale to hurt less, love more, and experience more peace of mind every day. My interview with Mary will be featured in two parts here on the blog. Be sure to check back tomorrow for the second half of this exclusive interview. What makes your book on forgiveness so different than what’s been written in the past?
Most previous books about forgiveness focused heavily on why forgiveness is a good thing to do, but they were not so clear about how to do it.  A lot of them were very intellectual and moralistic, and either too religious or lacking a spiritual framework. None of them adequately addressed the importance of honestly expressing the emotions, or drawing on the healing light available in the subtle energy body. Unconditional Forgiveness is the first book that goes into clear detail about a step-by-step method of forgiveness that includes all the levels of our being—physical, emotional, energetic, spiritual.  This makes the method powerfully effective and it has brought swift and permanent relief to thousands of people for forty years. The other difference in this book is its tone—it’s light and accessible and fun to read. It addresses forgiveness issues from the mundane to the catastrophic, in a universal spiritual language, and with both compassion and a sense of humor.
When we think about forgiveness, we automatically think about major transgressions—relationships ending, death, trauma, but what about the minor transgressions like neighbors and coworkers that drive you crazy? Can your techniques help with our everyday challenges?
Most people’s forgiveness concerns play out on the everyday level—frustration with your spouse or kids, little fights with an unreasonable neighbor, dealing with the mistakes of a coworker that make your job more difficult. Some of these scenarios play out every day—day after day—and layers of tension build up around them, making daily life more difficult and less joyful. We have the power to increase the peace in our immediate world, and, if more people live the principle of forgiveness as a daily habit, we will increase the peace on a global level. Every act of forgiveness creates a powerful “ripple effect.”
As the holidays approach, many people dread the inevitable family gatherings. What advice would you give to people suffering this holiday season?
I recommend that if you know you are going to be tense or resentful with someone at the holiday table, you take some time in advance and do some “pre-emptive forgiveness.” Sit down with Unconditional Forgiveness and make a short list of individuals you need to be more accepting of and release your expectations of them ahead of time. See what common ground you share, however small, and find one or two good things about them to focus on when you are in the room with them. Also, make some real choices about what you do and don’t do during the holidays, so you can enjoy some of it exactly on your own terms, and surrender peacefully to the other situations, exactly as they are.
You’ve called the need to forgive a public health issue. Can you talk about that?
Studies show that emotional resentments cause an accumulation of stress in the body, and this can cause disease. Everyone you know is walking around with some unresolved issue or other, and it’s merely because as a society we don’t understand and teach the process of emotional healing. These days, most people agree that you shouldn't smoke cigarettes, that you need to exercise, drink water, and eat your fruits and vegetables. It’s common public health knowledge. I believe we are on the brink of widely recognizing that forgiveness is a life skill and a good health habit that can be taught, just like we teach reading or driving or good health habits. It will reduce stress-related illness, marital disruption, and violence—because violence has roots in shame, which is a self-forgiveness issue.  
Part two of our exclusive interview with Mary Hayes Grieco will be posted here on the Trend Watch blog tomorrow. Stay tune to learn more about Unconditional Forgiveness.

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