Be honest we’ve all had a grudge or resentment that we cling onto, analyse and allow to spiral out of control.
Whether it’s the party you weren’t invited to, the friend who owed you money and didn’t pay it back or the family member who criticises you to others.
An outsider may think some of these hurts are trivial, but they’ve built up to be a real issue for you. That means you’re going to hold onto the grudge and poke it every so often to check it’s still painful.
The problem with hanging onto your grievances is that the only person their hurting is you.
When you can forgive the perpetrator, it’s not them who benefits but you.
Research has shown that when you harbour a grudge, your brain thinks it’s under threat and releases the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. The job of these hormones is for fight or flight, so you go into an anxious and stressed state.
However, if you can forgive the grudge, you stop feeling like a victim and become more optimistic, confident and compassionate.
Does it matter who is right or wrong if you’re the only one in pain?
How do I let my grudges go?
Do you find yourself playing little films in your mind of a painful situation and reinforcing your resentments?
To change your perspective on the scenario, imagine yourself connected to the other person by strings. Then visualise yourself cutting those strings and floating away with compassion.
It’s also true that when we find it hard to forgive others. It’s because we also need to forgive ourselves for our part of the experience.
Finally, remember that everyone is trying to do their best with the resources and experiences they have (including you). If you assume there is another reason you don’t know about for the other person’s behaviour. It becomes easier to put down your load of resentment. Then you’ll feel lighter, happier and self-assured.