Lessons In Forgiveness And Letting Go of Resentment

Relationships are messy and far from perfect. But there is one thing that can help strengthen it- forgiveness. 

We have to understand that mistakes do happen and if we can’t learn to forgive, our resentment will damage the relationships we’ve been working so hard on.

By: Jason Suerte Felipe

Some of us can find it difficult to forgive. Especially for past mistakes. Maybe there was a time you felt abandoned. Perhaps you felt betrayed or your partner failed to comfort you in a time of need. Or the most common of them all, a moment where the trust was broken. These are only a few ways a partner can hurt us. And it’s only natural that we built our walls up to protect us from feeling hurt once more.
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But if we allow resentment to control us, we compromise our love and inject our relationships with toxicity.

This not only damages our relationship, but it can also affect our mental and physical health.

According to Psychology Today’s “A Lesson In Grace,”every time you think about someone who has wronged you, the amygdala in your lizard brain lights up and activates your ‘fight-or-flight’ response, stimulating your adrenal glands to pump out cortisol and triggering your sympathetic nervous system to go into overdrive. Next thing you know, BOOM. Your heart races, your respiratory rate increases, stomach acid gets pumped out, and – worst of all – the body’s natural self-repair mechanisms get flipped off, putting you at greater risk of everything from heart disease to cancer.”

Check out this article to learn more about forgiveness.

Resentment pushes us away from others and contaminates our well-being. We can start to see a dramatic shift in the way we think and act, as well as how our body responds to these emotions. Some may start to feel pain in parts of our bodies. Most common occurrences of pain being on our back and shoulders. You can say that represents the baggage and weight you have been carrying.

Untitled design (2) copyBut by letting go of the baggage and grudges, forgiveness can lead to “healthier relationships, improve mental health, lower blood pressure, show fewer symptoms of depression, a stronger immune system, improved mental health, improved self-esteem, and less anxiety, stress and hostility.”

It’s very easy for us to hold resentment for someone we love and trust. It can cause anger, sadness and confusion. But if we allow ourselves to succumb to these negative emotions, we can get swallowed up by our own bitterness and fail to recognize what we have become. And it can even have us take our relationship for granted.

We have to give ourselves a chance to forgive and let go in order for us to be happy. Not just with our partners, but most importantly, with ourselves. If we start with that, the trust and love will come easier.

“Resentment prevents miracles, while love and grace foster them.”

Some of us can forgive easily, but even the most stubborn can learn to let go.

Here Are 6 Lessons In Forgiveness To Help You Let Go Of That Ugly Resentment…

1. Who Might You be Without Resentment?

Think about who you might be without this resentment. Will you be a better person because of it? Will you be happier? Will holding a grudge benefit you in the long run?

We all want to be happy. With ourselves and within our relationships. But we can’t do that if we don’t allow ourselves to take a step back and evaluate what we are holding ourselves from.

Who are you with the resentment? Who are you without it? And which one do you want to be?

2. What Might Happen If You Decide To Finally Let It Go

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You’ll be free.

No more getting angry when a thought comes to mind. No more bringing up old fights that should have been buried along time ago. No more focusing on the negative and finally realizing you deserve to be happy.
Letting go can be difficult, but why hang on to something that will hurt you?

3. Stop Living In The Past

You are so busy living in the past that you aren’t allowing the present to be as it is. By doing that, you are just preventing yourself from seeing any progress.

It can be hard, but learn to be in the moment. You have control of your own thoughts. You have the power to choose to move on.

4. Break Down Those Walls

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It’s easy for most of us to put our walls up when we feel threatened. But we have to tear down our walls in order to say how we really feel.

Having your walls up can be damaging to your relationship. It can cause even more anger and frustration with your partner. By allowing those walls down, it will be easier to communicate what you really want for yourself and your relationships. It can also help let go of any baggage.

This will not only save you and your partner time, but it can rebuild trust that may have been broken and even a better understanding of one another.

Understand that this can be a difficult thing to do, so have patience. Yelling at someone or pressuring them to speak won’t do any good. When they are ready to talk, be there to listen.

5. Enough With The Blame Game

It’s easy to blame mistakes on someone else. But it’s important to realize when you are in the wrong. Take responsibility in your actions. No one likes to be blamed and have a finger pointed at them. That will put their walls up even more. Learn to accept the mistakes made, think of how it made you and your partner feel, and think of what can be done to prevent it from happening again.

6. Forgive But Don’t Forget

We all know the common saying “forgive and forget.” But I would argue not to forget. It’s important to remember events that have happened in order to see any progress made.

Forgiveness is the first stepping stone to moving on. Allow yourself to forgive and you’ll be happier with yourself and with your relationships.

What do you do to help you forgive? How do you let go of resentment? Share in the comments!


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