What is resentment? It is a feeling we get when we believe someone has wronged us, has taken something from us without our permission, has said hurtful things, has made decisions that have negatively impacted us, or has somehow failed our expectations. The feeling generally develops over time after repeatedly being exposed to the situation.
Resentment internally is like poison running through our veins. It leads to unhappiness, disrupted sleep, over-analyzing, desire to be vengeful, and aggressive or passive-aggressive behaviors. Actions or interactions that are fueled by resentment generally tend to lead to destruction, especially destruction of relationships.
How do you let go of resentment? The first step is willingness. Often, we are too attached to our resentment, making it difficult to let go. We draw a certain energy from resentful thoughts giving us the perception that we are in the right and justified. Letting go of resentment might feel as if you are letting go of being right, which is not really the case. Furthermore, how important is it for you to be right? Take a situation that is causing you to be resentful and apply the following few steps:
- Be willing to let go of resentment, the attachment to it, and the energy that it brings.
- Let go of the need to be right even if you believe you are in the right.
- Try to see your role in the situation. This realization can lead to feeling empowered and in-charge of the situation.
- Kick into action and address the situation in a healthy and assertive manner if possible.
- Remind yourself that your resentment hurts you and no one else.
About the author: Dr. Seda Gragossian is the Clinical Director at the Talk Therapy Psychology Center in San Diego, where she helps people work through mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, trauma, addiction, and many others. Talk Therapy runs individual, group therapy, and intensive outpatient programs (IOP).
Dr. Seda Gragossian, PhD, PSY 24901
Talk Therapy Psychology Center
5935 Cornerstone Ct W, Ste 125
San Diego, CA, 92121