When the actions and words of another are perceived as hurtful it can trigger feelings of anger and sadness in us, which results in resentment and grudges. A resentment is a bitter indignation at having been treated unfairly. Getting angry is a normal reaction but if we allow those feelings of anger to fester and if we continually dwell on them, we feel a certain bitterness and resentment towards the person who has hurt us which can lead to us holding a grudge against that person. We feel victimized and it feels difficult to move past the resentment. We tend to dwell on the negative aspect of what has happened and the feelings of resentment can linger for a long period of time. We also tend to replay what happened in our mind and this can leave a person drained. Holding onto resentment is an unhealthy response as the feelings of anger can move from mild to deep and can linger for a long time, affecting the relationship in the longer term.
Resentments may arise from our interactions with others be they our intimate partners, children, close friends or family, and even workmates. Feelings of resentment lead to anger, annoyance, unhappiness, sadness, and irritability and in more extreme cases when allowed to fester over a long period of time can also cause anxiety and depression. The more we allow the feelings of resentment to linger the harder it is to move past what happened. When the feelings of resentment take up space in our mind it can take over our life. Memories associated with resentments are stored in the subconscious mind. Therefore it is important to do what is necessary to neutralize these feelings through deep reflection and dissolve these feelings of resentment.
How resentments can affect relationships:
- If one of the partners in a relationship is always doing the heavy lifting like caring for the children, household duties cooking etc and there is no help offered by the other partner, this can lead to feelings of resentment over time.
- The prevalence of power dynamics in a relationship can also give rise to feelings of resentment as one of the partners feels constantly overpowered and not heard.
- If hurtful words are exchanged in a relationship this can also lead to feelings of resentment.
- A lack of communication between the parties leads to resentment and can cause the end of a relationship.
My top tips for getting over feelings of resentment:
- Identify the action or behavior that has upset you and caused you to have feelings of resentment.
- Try and identify instances when you displayed similar actions or behavior. When we react to certain behavior in others it usually reminds us of certain behaviors on our part, which we are not too proud about.
- Self reflect to get a better understanding of the part you played which caused the other person to do what they did. It’s important to take responsibility for the part we played. There are always two sides to a story. Demonstrate some empathy and put yourself in the shoes of the other person. It helps you understand the situation better.
- Reflect on the lesson you can learn as a result of what happened.
- Focus on the positives in the relationship rather than on the negatives. By focusing on the positives you can move away from feeling victimized and it can liberate you from feelings of resentment. This will elevate your own self-worth and lessens the emotional reactions you may have to the negative behaviors of others. You then become the master of your own destiny not the victim of your history so you are less vulnerable to negative comments from others.
Anne-Marie Cade’s Bio
Hi, I am Anne-Marie. I am also a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner / Nationally Accredited Mediator, Certified Divorce Coach, High Conflict Coach, Parent Coordinator and founder of Divorce Right.
I have created a revolutionary new way for clients to heal and get over divorce or break-up. I am passionate about family and relationships and I work with clients to empower them to improve communication, manage conflict and reach a peaceful, amicable separation, so they can successfully co-parent together. I incorporate mindfulness practices into my coaching and mediation sessions so my clients are able to get more centered and grounded and become more mindful about the decisions they make.
This unique method helps clients manage the conflict, re-frame their relationship with their partner and finalize all the paperwork so they can move on to the next chapter of your life. I believe that this approach will ensure a positive outcome for the family. I am currently working on my soon to be released book “Peaceful Divorce, Happy Kids.”
I offer 1-1 coaching programs, group coaching, online courses, workshops, and mediation services.