Communication Matters: The Forgiveness Tree

Oct 22, 2019

Sometimes, when communicating forgiveness, it helps to think of it with the tree metaphor.

Researchers suggest that meaning is not cut and dried; it is a matter of imagination. A tree metaphor helps to envision the dimension of forgiveness.

It may help to create your own tree by drawing, cutting pieces from a magazine, or constructing a tree from found objects.

Kelley, Waldron, and Kloeber provide a guide:

Roots: Forgiveness—related values—as honesty, trust, compassion

Trunk: Healthy self, “I cannot control what others might do: but I can make choices about what I do.”

Branches become relationships, your family, friends, co-workers

Leaves: Renewal, redemption and healing and your ability to forgive others and yourself.

You might write forgiveness messages on the leaves of your tree, whether you have imagined or constructed one. This process can open the way for genuine communication with human beings in our lives.