There’s nothing like the holidays if you want a front-row seat to witness a good old-fashioned grudge. My mother once ‘borrowed’ some shoes from her sister while she was out. They never spoke again. In their later years, when my mother went to her house to patch things up, her sister called the police. (tee hee) Hearing stories like that makes me keenly aware that grudges are in my DNA. Knowing that gift was passed down through the generations stimulates my curiosity.
Holding a grudge means you harbor negativity for some time following an event. That experience might not have included the person who is now the target of your discontent. Anger, bitterness, and resentment can be the product of shame, guilt, and frustration. Then there is the perception of a threat. It can feel like someone means you harm, even when that is not their awareness. We live with a lot of conflict in the world today. A common response for some is to believe they have been wronged in the past. The grudge is one way to keep the anger alive!
If you are still angry long after an event, that can be a signal you are holding on to some serious negativity. Dr. Marcel Vogel once expressed that it is our human duty to go to the source of our negativity and clear things up. Some people are not that good at apologizing. With no real attempt to clear the air, the grudge takes hold in the system. Let’s take hold of a whisper to gain more information on holding a grudge:
Residual emotions from a past experience build the complex system of human energy. What seems like a small slight can trigger the energy. Not being chosen to do something you really want to do may not feel small. Being called by the wrong name or going unnoticed for a new hairstyle are examples of common oversights.
Larger inconsiderations, like rude comments or false accusations, will form a natural response. If someone triggers withheld emotions, the response may feel out of proportion. When two people hold a grudge against each other, the situation can worsen. The response from both becomes automatic, leading to cognitive distortions. Incorrect thinking and making up stories are a common defense used to justify a negative reaction.
Feeling unacknowledged or disappointed is a reality of life that cannot be avoided. The solitary journey through negativity toward loving acceptance makes a great human story. You are the one who suffers from holding a grudge. Many will develop attitudes as a way to cope with life. With greater self-awareness, you can move away from self-punishment.
Harboring ill feelings will never solve a problem. Grudges will only lead to blocking self-growth, development, and maturity. Holding on to negativity traps you in the circle of emptiness, hopelessness, and bitterness. Negative energy and aggression drain your spirit. Toxic emotions are a type of self-inflicted wound. You can pivot into freedom from the pain. The goal is forgiveness, acceptance, and connection to the beauty within. Trust in leadership through example, and you will make a better world with the lives you touch.
Bring joy, ease suffering and create beauty, then dance like you mean it!
“When you hold a grudge, you want someone else’s sorrow to reflect your level of hurt but the two rarely meet. Let today be the day you finally release yourself from the imprisonment of past grudges and anger. Simplify your life. Let go of the poisonous past and live the abundantly beautiful present… today”
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