What is resentment?
Resentment is clearly a negative emotion that can turn us into a toxic person, as it consumes us little by little 😣. It corresponds to a feeling of anger and revolt that we keep after an injustice we’ve experienced. In this case, it’s impossible to turn the page and forgive, the only thing driving us is revenge. Usually it disappears when we feel that the damage has been repaired ✅.
The difference between a grudge and resentment
We often don’t realize the difference between a grudge and resentment. They have a common origin, as they are both feelings of dislike after we’ve been ridiculed. There is nevertheless a small distinction to be made:
👉 Being resentful: it corresponds to a tenacious feeling of bitterness after experiencing an injustice.
👉 Holding a grudge: beyond the feeling, it’s a behavior of animosity that’s born with a desire for revenge that we have for someone.
You hold a grudge against someone and feel resentment. The idea is the same, but the word is used differently. In any case, feeling such an emotion can have consequences on your body and mind…
Why isn’t resentment good?
I’ve felt resentment at times, but it hasn’t set in so much as to turn me into holding a grudge. I’m relieved to have escaped from it, because it exposes you to more suffering. We don’t live in the present moment, as we’re stuck in the past. Instead of moving on, we dwell on the feeling of anger for a long time… It’s impossible to feel good when there are so many negative things going on inside us 😥!
The consequences of resentment
It’s clear that feeling so much negativity has consequences on our minds. It can lead to an anxiety disorder and a loss of self-confidence. However, there are also physical consequences, as resentment can take up so much space inside us. It can also affect our social relationships… Here is a list of the consequences that this negative feeling can have 👎:
- Aggression and irritability;
- Increased levels of cortisol (the stress hormone);
- Crying spells or anxiety attacks;
- Psychosomatic disorders: stomach pains, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, etc.;
- Social isolation and withdrawal;
- Sleep disorder;
- Vulnerability of the immune system.
How to get rid of resentment?
Getting rid of such resentment can take time. Nonetheless, at some point, you need to learn to let go to move forward. There are different stages to this:
We need to acknowledge that we have a problem
Not in the sense that we’re dysfunctional, resentment is a natural feeling that everyone has experienced at some point. However, when we’re unable to get past the anger, or even rage, and revenge is what drives us, it is hiding a deeper problem 😡. Acknowledging that something is wrong is the first step to understanding what is hidden behind it all.
We need to express what we feel
It’s the sinews of war because if we express our emotions spontaneously, resentment won’t set in. Yes, being able to say out loud what’s going on inside us allows us to get rid of the negativity. Acting as if nothing happened and suffering in silence while brooding isn’t a solution. If someone has hurt us, it’s normal to tell them, and they will learn to correct their behavior. The solution is in the expression of emotions!
😳 And if the other person is offended? Normally, they should ask for forgiveness for having insulted our feelings. However, not everyone is kind enough to do this. In this case, it’s better that the person who hurt us gets out of our lives!
We need to learn to forgive
When the person who offended us apologizes, we need to be able to accept it. Learning to forgive is necessary to move on. Be careful, it doesn’t mean that we forget what they did! We accept their mistake and go above our anger. It’s a very noble feeling that can be enriching.
😌 By forgiving, we work on letting go and put things into perspective. We’re therefore mentally freer, which results in a better life!
We agree to get help
It’s already good to be able to express our emotions to someone who’s not involved in what provoked the resentment. However, it’s even better to talk about it to a professional if we continue to hold a grudge. Thanks to psychological support, we can learn to get rid of a negative emotion like resentment. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is one of the most suitable ways to reprogram our thoughts and feelings 💭.
Editor’s note: Identify your emotions!
As you’ve seen, you shouldn’t let this feeling of resentment set in, whatever the cause. You should absolutely put your resentment and emotions into words. They’re not always easy to identify, it’s sometimes difficult to know what’s going on inside us, why, how... 👉 That’s where the psychologist comes into play. As the sessions progress, you’ll see your resentment go away in order to live more serenely. Don’t let it consume you. The person who hurt you certainly doesn’t deserve it...
🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!
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