Lauretta Hannon: On forgiveness, procrastination and string theory
January 22, 2013 12:12 AM | 2743 views | 7 7 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Q: I have someone in my life who I love dearly that hurt me. We’ve talked it out, and I’ve officially forgiven her — and both of us have moved on. Do I still have the right to have a hard time being around her because she makes me feel small and unworthy? Because of this I’ve started distancing myself from her and group outings and am losing out on time with other friends. How can I still hang out with her if I am still hurting inside?

A: Sweetie, you may have “officially” forgiven her, but you have not truly forgiven her. And neither of you has moved on. Instead it’s business as usual. It’s not a question of your “right” to feel hurt and unworthy; it’s a question of your choice to dishonor yourself by being around someone who tries to diminish you.

Find ways to gather with other friends, and be transparent about it so they know why she is not invited. We all have to take out the garbage in our lives, and this relationship deserves to be in the trash heap.

Being in her presence is actually making it harder for you to heal from and release the original hurt. Remember that the company you keep is a reflection of your self-love and self-respect. In order to grow you must not hand over your power to someone who seeks to make you less.

And who knows? After you’ve healed you might be able to be around her and not let her affect you.

Q: What do you think about string theory versus conventional physics?

A: Wow, Dear Abby never gets these kinds of questions! Just kidding: I love it when readers ask the unexpected.

I started my career as a science writer and have long been fascinated by physics. I’m particularly intrigued with the spiritual implications indicated by this field of study. Albert Einstein says it best, “The more I study physics, the more I am drawn to metaphysics.”

Q: I have a lot of different ideas and start a lot of projects. The problem is that I never finish them. Can you give some suggestions for procrastinators like me?

A: Most of us don’t realize the danger of not getting things done. We certainly don’t understand the extent to which we undermine our own success, happiness, and purpose. As a chronic procrastinator, I know I didn’t.

Before I could break its spell over my life, I had to stop making excuses. “I’ll do that when I have more time” was my preferred cop-out. I had to finally accept that I’d never have more time because I already had all the time there was. I was just not using it well.

First, prioritize your projects. You might be trying to do too much at the same time. Here are a few more tips.

* Small victories lead to bigger ones.

Tackle a small task when you’re feeling overwhelmed. See how good it feels to complete it. This will empower you to do more. The cure is always in the doing.

* No more excuses.

Excuses are little devils. They deceive you and poison all progress.

* Lollygag a little.

A modest amount of lollygagging is healthy. Go ahead and check your email and Facebook, but don’t check them 20 times a day. Allow yourself to daydream and play; those activities boost your productivity.

* Time may not be on your side.

It sounds trite, but what would you get done if you knew your time was limited? Act as if it is. Days and resources will not last forever. As Martin Luther says, “How soon not now becomes never.”

* It’s not just your problem.

When you avoid doing something, you often shift the burden onto others. This destroys teamwork at home, the office, and everywhere else. Be mindful of how your procrastination might be affecting your loved ones and your relationships.

Now go do something, big or small, that you’ve been meaning to do.

Send your questions to

Lauretta Hannon, a resident of Powder Springs, is the bestselling author of The Cracker Queen—A Memoir of a Jagged, Joyful Life and a keynote speaker. Visit her at
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For reconciliation
January 25, 2013
One of the greatest blessings we can experience is to forgive others. Don’t move on. To live by “an eye for an eye” as the writer suggests “so they know why she is not invited” is hurtful and inevitably will inflict pain on those trying to forgive. We must try to forgive those who wrong us just as our Father has forgiven us.

Forgiving isn’t easy. When we are betrayed we are hurt. Holding grudges hurts ourselves worse than forgiving those who have offended us. When you are hurt the best thing to do is to talk it out—wholeheartedly. Do not give up! Be honest. Be truthful. Meet the challenge face to face.

Matthew 5:23-24 NIV

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.”

Lauretta Hannon
January 25, 2013
Note that the reader says they have talked it out and yet she's still hurting and not able to forgive.

I advised her to take a break from the friend so that she can work on truly forgiving. Remember that some folks are toxic, and while they should be forgiven, they don't have to remain in your company if they continue to hurt you.

I like your quote from Matthew. Thanks for contributing to the discussion.
January 23, 2013
Enjoying a few minutes of lollygagging while reading your column in the Marietta Daily Journal online!
Lauretta Hannon
January 22, 2013
Laura, Thank you so much. I enjoy reading your work in the MDJ as well!

And Hannon Fan, Keep up the procrastination; pithy comments are always fun to read!
Lauretta Hannon
January 22, 2013
What's your favorite form of procrastination?

Mine is bad TV.
Laura Armstrong
January 22, 2013
Of late, I'm into watching Cupcake Wars, especially because you can taste two local winners' cupcakes right here in Marietta! (Great Harvest Bread Company in west Cobb and also on the square). The show is a guilty pleasure and complete waste of time for this non-baker.

Thanks for your way fun column, Lauretta. Especially enjoyed today's NOT trite advice to live each day as though it might be one of your last. We so much take for granted that we'll have years and years left, and I think that's what gets people into ruts.
Hannon Fan
January 22, 2013
Making pithy comments on MDJ online.
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