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In psychology, resentment is when a person has ongoing upset feelings towards another person or place because of a real or imagined injustice.
Can you recall the last time you held a grudge against someone? Perhaps it was a friend who betrayed you, a stranger who wronged you, a lover who left, or a parent who unintentionally hurt you. Perhaps it is because you are in a role that requires caring and supporting people and do not feel appreciated.
What can we do to overcome these feelings and painful memories?
What can one do to overcome these negative thought patterns?
What can we do to relinquish ourselves from feelings conjured up by other people’s actions?
When we drill deep into the root of resentment and anger, the cause usually revolves around our ego and the mind’s attempt to protect it from extinction. We react from a place of ego, survival instincts and defense. We may lash out from a place of anger, or our anger turns inwards, and we become depressed and resentful.
We fight out of an instinct to survive, and to protect our ego-driven pride. In the end, nobody wins. Resentment, anger, and fear are all connected. We become trapped in a self-obsessed cycle of being afraid of the future, angry in the present, and filled with resentment over our past.
The keys to overcoming the emotion lie in understanding and forgiving. This seems counter-intuitive, since our instincts tell us that we need to defend ourselves, and possibly come up with ways to hurt the other person.
Understanding gives us insight into what the other person is feeling. Even before we reach the stage of forgiveness, understanding will automatically ease some of the emotional burden we’ve been carrying.
Before seeking to understand, we need to find a place of clarity within ourselves. Once we have understood the place from where we are responding, we can move to forgiving the other person and ourselves. Holding on to resentment is usually more harming to yourself than the person you hold the resentment against.
Use responsible methods for dealing with these uncomfortable and unpleasant emotions so that you are no longer slaves to the emotional reflexes of our animalistic instincts.
Contact me to assist you to move through these powerful emotions - firstname.lastname@example.org or on 084 779 4889. Visit my website on www.nadinetherapy.co.za.
Credit: psychologytoday.com; thinksimplenow.com; lifehack.org
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