What Is Resentment, And How To Combat It

What is resentment

Resentment is a very human emotion and, at the same time, harmful It is a feeling of hostility towards someone who has done us, in our opinion, an injustice, despite the redundancy.

This emotion not only becomes chronic in the form of hatred towards those who hurt us, but it also brings us discomfort, a pain that we accept that affects us, even though we can find a solution.

Let’s see what resentment is, what harm it causes us and how we can stop feeling it, in a healthy and socially appropriate way.

What is resentment? General characteristics

Resentment is, without a doubt, a negative emotion. It is, taking its most literal and academic definition, the feeling of hostility, or great resentment, towards someone who has done us some type of offense or harm That is, it appears when we feel that someone has behaved badly with us.

Everyone takes things in their own way. Where some hear an innocent comment, others see a terrible offense, generating a lot of anger. We feel hurt by anything and, instead of talking about things or managing what we interpret as injustice, we feel a deep hatred for the person who has caused us such misfortune.

This emotion can be so strong and so bad that, at times, it can unbalance us, making us sick both physically and mentally Obsessing with an injustice transforms our mind into a prison and, at the same time, transforms us into executioners. The accumulated resentment leads us to behave in a way that is very contrary to how we are, wanting to take revenge, losing control. Of course, it can make us worse people.

Resentment, as natural as it is harmful

It is normal that, when we feel that someone has treated us unfairly, we feel negative emotions, resentment being among them. The problem is that it can take control of our lives, radically changing the way we are.

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As we suggested, everyone is unique and takes things in many different ways. This is why, on more than one occasion, something will happen to us that will awaken this emotion. However, Since there are many times that resentment can occur and it is almost never beneficial, it is necessary to learn to manage it

It is necessary to learn that everything changes, that there are times when good things will happen to us and other times when bad things will happen to us. Life is a constant flow in which we will not always be in a cloud. If we take refuge in resentment, instead of looking for solutions to the damage that has been done to us, we are fanning the flames of bitterness, hatred, tension, bad feelings, feelings that do not make us move forward.

Resentment, something so humanly natural, is, at the same time, very harmful, a dangerous weapon that unbalances our body and mind. It prevents us from enjoying life. It makes offenses, whether verbal or of any kind, become almost chronic in our minds A comment that hurt us, some words that the wind has already carried away, are repeated over and over again on the walls of our minds, like the echo in a cave…

What is it for?

Continuing to hate or repeatedly thinking about something that no longer exists is meaningless. As we have already said, the words that the wind has carried away are no longer there. Thinking over and over again about the damage they did to us, but not learning to manage the damage we feel, that we inflict on ourselves with toxic thoughts, is the real problem. You have to let go, in a healthy and non-harmful way, of that pain.

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We cannot go around the world wishing harm to others It sounds obvious, a classic school, family, or church lesson. From a very young age we are told that we will not harm others but, when someone does it to us, we take refuge in the excuse of “it was they who started it”, “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth”.

But, as Mahatma Gandhi said, “an eye for an eye and the world will end up blind.” We cannot harm those who supposedly harmed us, because hatred is not expelled by doing harm. It is going more and more, and can materialize in a spiral of physical and verbal violence that is not at all desirable. Hate must be extinguished with good intentions and spoken.

So what good is resentment? Really, not much. It is an obstacle that gets in the way of trying to restore a relationship It is what we interpret as an offense that, with the passage of time and even though it was extinct, we have kept cryogenized in our minds. It is a problem, not a solution, in our social relationships. To the extent that there is resentment, the relationship cannot return to what it was.

How to stop feeling resentful

As we have already mentioned, resentment, although an emotion that is undoubtedly natural in every human being, is not beneficial to us. That is why there are many people who, despite being trapped in a fervent hatred, try to make the effort to escape the terrible clutches of this emotion. Resentment harms us, it destroys us physically and mentally. This is why we have to find a solution.

The first step is to correctly identify this feeling Being angry over a small tiff with someone, an emotion that will eventually fade, is not the same as feeling the need to take revenge for what they have done to us. If our imagination does not stop imagining terrible consequences for him and his actions, it is clear that we feel resentment.

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Once the emotion is identified, it is necessary to resort to a powerful tool, more powerful than any revenge we can conceive: communication Talking and expressing to that person why they have bothered us is a good attempt to get the relationship back on track. Forgiveness is a prosocial act, which helps stabilize our interactions with others.

However, if we cannot talk to the person because they either do not want to or cannot, we can try to vent, healthily, with another person. Explaining to them what has happened to us may awaken their empathy, something that will undoubtedly make us feel supported.

An extremely vital way to face life is accept what has happened, as long as it is not something terribly serious Sometimes pain prevents us from accepting things that are already part of the past and, as we have said before, there is no point in dwelling on them any further. That person did something bad to us, that’s it. Expired water.

However, accepting is not synonymous with forgiving. In addition to accepting what happened to us, we must make decisions and actions to improve the situation. As we have already said, communication is essential, especially when it is used to fix the situation and vent in a healthy way.

However, if there is no way to fix the damage he has caused us, either because he does not want to or because he is not aware of his actions, Trying to separate ourselves from that person can be a drastic but necessary measure In some cases, it is better to be alone than in bad company.