Growing up, you are told that if you work really hard and complete your education then you will experience all the success that the world has to offer. Now I’m not saying that’s not the truth but it’s not the whole truth. As I’m sure you know by now, there are SO many hidden factors to success that simply are not taught in classrooms.

If you look at some of the most successful and prosperous people in the world (and I’m not referring to success in simply terms of money either), you will soon start to find similar traits of thinking, acting and deciding in each one of their lives. Whether it’s being goal-oriented, persistent, innovative, or disciplined with a daily routine, one can soon start to take notice that success is more than working hard.

The most common denominator in any happy, joyful, successful, faith-filled, goal-oriented person, healthy person is a trait that is actually invisible but it’s powerful. What’s that? It’s the way he or she chooses to think. It’s using the power in your mind to believe first and then see your desired results. I’m sure you’ve heard it over and over again that the greatest asset to your success is the way you think as what you think about you become.

Your thinking can be the greatest asset or liability towards your personal success. Please note that I’m referring to experiencing success in all areas of your life – personal well-being, career, business, family, relationships, finances and health. Negative thinking can keep you in a stagnant place, a place where you will keep going around in circles wondering why your life sucks.

But there is another sneaky little culprit that is invisible which will torment you and blocks all sorts of good things happening to you. I’m referring to unforgiveness.

OK, I know that most people cringe when you think about forgiving people for the harm that they have caused you but when you harbor unforgiveness and offense in your heart, you become someone who is open to torment in your soul. When you choose to hold onto your hurts, you are giving other invisible enemies like bitterness, anger, rage, resentment, fear, worry and anxiety to reign and rule over your heart.

Once these emotions start to control you (and most of the time you won’t even know it), you are allowing strongholds to be manifested into your soul. Strongholds are invisible walls that will prevent you from experiencing all that God has to offer you. You’ll live your life serving your emotions and allowing them to make your life a roller coaster and living hell.

The deceiving thing about unforgiveness is that you’re fooled into thinking that it won’t have an adverse effect on any other part of your life, but boy is that a lie! The other lie that we fall for is that if you forgive then you’re “weak” and it excuses the other person’s behavior…another set of lies.

Forgiveness is a release for you and NOT for the other person. Forgiveness is not something that is deserved; it’s something that is given. If you are waiting for someone to earn your forgiveness then you are not truly extending forgiveness.

How can you experience success if you become a woman who is bitter, angry, resentful and worried? We put such an emphasis on working hard when it comes to experiencing success but we totally ignore the invisible enemies that hold us back from receiving the desires of our heart.

I refuse to underestimate the pain that you’ve suffered or what you have been thru, nor am I telling you to downplay it, nor am I telling you not to get help if you need it. Bad things happen to good people and that’s because we live in a fallen, broken world.

But if you have been experiencing resistance in your success in your emotional well-being, career, business, finances, relationships, family or health, then see if you are holding onto any pain or unforgiveness.

Start by choosing to stop replaying the pain. And if you got to start out by forgiving in faith first by simply writing it down and reading it out loud every morning until you believe what you wrote down, then do what you have to. Say it and keep repeating it. “I have completely forgiven ______ for _______.”

Make a decision to choose to forgive and start your healing process. Release that person from your soul and release the “debt” that they owe you. Is holding onto your pain worth the rest of your life? Is holding onto your pain worth that happy family you want? Is holding onto your pain worth those sleepless nights of worry? Is holding onto your pain worth your business making 6-figures? Is holding onto your pain worth your dreams?

Let me answer for you…it’s not.


Maria I. Melendez