In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to share the secrets to overcoming and letting go of resentment.
First a quick update:
“Secrets to losing weight, being thin and loving your body”
Watch my videos where I offer a series of six insights into the real causes of weight and the link between our subconscious thoughts, emotions and weight.
Now, let’s talk about how to overcome resentment.
The dictionary defines resentment as “Indignation or ill will felt as a result of a real or imagined grievance.” In other words, resentment is that bad, hostile or evil feeling towards someone whom you believe wronged you.
Later in this Success Newsletter, you can complete the simple questionnaire to help you determine the symptoms of resentment.
Resentment can result from various events, situations or experiences; and these are just a few examples:
* A colleague at work gets the promotion you wanted
* Someone fails to keep their promise
* Someone speaks in a negative and condescending manner to you and you say nothing
* Feeling used, unappreciated or taken for granted
* A friend, lover or parent fails to live up to your expectation
* A loss occurs, someone close dies and you resent their death or the suffering and consequences of their death (being left with various responsibilities – physical, financial or emotional such as taking care of a child or family on your own)
* Someone publicly humiliates you. (I recall a friend who felt so deeply humiliated and publicly shamed because she was taking a bus from Baltimore to New York and when she tried to re-board after a scheduled stop, the ticket inspector accused her of having a forged ticket. The inspector shouted at her in front of the other guests, accusing her of lying and cheating, and he threatened to call the police. The problem was caused by the fax printer which made it hard to distinguish the number on the ticket but it wasn’t discovered until many hours later.)
It is common also that we easily feel resentment towards our business partner, romantic partner or parents for something they did or didn’t do. One client told me that she resented her husband because she believed that he always put his job first ahead of her, and it left her feeling insignificant, invisible and unloved. We discovered that this was something she also felt growing up with two busy parents – one of whom was often traveling and thus rarely around.
Resentment is like a weed that chokes the life out of you. For one client, Anna, the resentment grew and grew until there was a chasm between her and her husband and now she couldn’t view or think of her husband in any other way except negatively; while for Miriam, the resentment left her looking for ways to avoid even sharing the bed with her husband.
Resentment, though, can also lead to obsession, insomnia, stress, depression and spitefulness.
Miranda was a successful woman, vibrant, confident, vivacious and full of life when she met and later married Alex, a charismatic, confident and handsome man. But within just a couple of years, via his actions and behavior, Alex revealed himself to be a sociopath. He cheated on Miranda and she found out that he had children in other countries; he abused her physically, mentally and emotionally; he stole Miranda’s passport, birth certificate, the deed to her house, fraudulently signed her name on checks, and eventually fled the country leaving her in a crisis. Miranda had to foreclose her home and four years later she was still paying for his actions.
When Miranda came to me, she told me “This man has put out my fire, he’s killed my vivacious spirit…and my personality…I’ve lost my pride and dignity. My self-worth and self-esteem need to be swept from the floor.”
Based on Alex’s actions, is it surprising that Miranda was full of resentment? How would someone in Miranda’s situation be able to release the resentment? Before I relate how she released it, and how you too can overcome and let go of resentment, let me add that as a result of Miranda’s resentment, she became depressed, obsessed and highly stressed. She felt worthless and unlovable. She would stay up all night Googling Alex to find out what country he was living in and would contact foreign reporters to alert and warn them about him and his actions. Meanwhile, Miranda’s body was out of control – she was fatigued, bloated, and she had become quite heavy and nothing was helping her to regain her body, confidence or the ability to love and trust again.
Now before I complete Miranda’s story, and tell you how you can release resentment, here is a questionnaire I have created to indentify if resentment has become a part of you:
* Do you harbor animosity against someone that you feel has wronged you?
* Do you feel angry, uneasy or tense when someone’s name is mentioned or when you are around that person, and; you hide those feelings from that person?
* Do you feel that the world has been unfair to you?
* Do you feel you could never forgive, forget or let go of a particular person or event?
* Do you still feel victimized about something that has happened, and, there was never any closure, reparation or resolution?
* Do you hold a grudge against a person, group or organization?
* Do you lose sleep over a certain relationship and want to pay back that person?
* Do you wake up in the middle of the night with distressing, angry or frustrating thoughts about someone you believe has wronged you?
* Do you wake up in the middle of the night obsessing over something that someone did?
* Do you still feel suspicious about someone that has wronged you in the past?
* Do you become easily angered or short-tempered around your partner even if you are not consciously aware of the reason?
* Do you easily explode for no apparent reason?
* Do you often feel suspicious and critical of others?
* Do you find it hard to trust?
* Do you dread going into work or the office and having to deal with people?
* Do you fake a smile, enthusiasm or excitement when you are around a particular person?
* Do you feel that you were entitled to something that never came your way?
* Do you feel that the world owes you something or that it wronged you?
* Is your mind often filled with negative thoughts about someone specific or a past event?
* Do you find yourself often engaging in harsh conversations about a particular person, condemning and criticizing that person?
* Have you experienced a loss and you feel that you cannot accept it; are you angry at God, the world or even the person that has died?
So here is the answer about how to get over resentment.
As I worked with Miranda, I was able to uncover her core issue and belief. Miranda told me she could not forgive Alex or let go of the resentment: “If I do then I am telling him what he did is okay.”
Yes, what Alex did was obviously wrong and there was no reason to justify it but the real problem was Miranda’s desire to punish Alex, teach him a lesson and above all ensure that she doesn’t condone or okay his behavior.
Identify the resentment and its effect on you. Is this present resentment a repeat of an older, deeper pain and event? What is the benefit of holding onto the resentment? Why are you holding onto it? How does that resentment hurt you?
Release the pain and emotion associated with the resentment: anger, rejection, shame, humiliation, worthlessness, desire for revenge, etc. (I do this with a specific visualization exercise that engages the subconscious mind, leading to ‘self permission’ to let go of the pain that is being held.)
Seek understanding of why this person acted this way; why are they this way? What happened that made them who and what they are today? Accept that this person is a victim of their own beliefs, their own childhood experiences. Awaken to realize that it wasn’t your fault and you didn’t deserve this behavior. Become honest and enlightened about what you were trying to do to them or achieve with them by holding onto the resentment. Become aware of their pain and limitations. (This does not condone nor justify what they did.)
Based on the work of step three, now forgive and express compassion toward this person.
For Miranda, the startling revelation and awakening occurred when she was willing to see that she was trying to change Alex and teach him a lesson, and; that she and Alex had shared the same childhood pain which made them both seek to be valued and to gain attention and approval at any cost. Alex had been badly abused as a child and Miranda had also been raised by an abusive father. The difference now was Miranda was able to choose emotional freedom and to be released from the pain and consequences of the resentment as well as the constant need for approval and attention at any price!
If you would like to comment on this newsletter, click here. If you have received this newsletter as a forward and would like to receive all of my newsletters please enter your email address on the home page.
I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & Clinical Hypnotherapist
Anointed “The Woman Expert” by WGN Chicago, Patrick Wanis PhD is a renowned Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert who developed SRTT therapy (Subconscious Rapid Transformation Technique) and is teaching it to other practitioners. Wanis’ clientele ranges from celebrities and CEOs to housewives and teenagers. CNN, BBC, FOX News, MSNBC & major news outlets worldwide consult Wanis for his expert insights and analysis on sexuality, human behavior and women’s issues. Wanis is the first person ever to do hypnotherapy on national TV – on the Montel Williams show.