“Ok. I’ll handle it. I take full responsibility.”
It’s what I said many years back to myself and to those around me.
A few days ago, I read an article by Danielle Laporte on Resentment. Resentment is so ugly. It’s such a horrible thing to feel. It’s like quicksand — you get into it without even realizing it, and before you know it, you’re struggling to keep your head from going under with the rest of your body but it just keeps pulling you in deeper and deeper.
I don’t mind feeling anger or sadness. But resentment? It’s just so damn hard and difficult to let go of because of how deeply it’s rooted in ego. Resentment is the most stubborn of feelings. It’s the little kid who sits with his arms and legs crossed and does not budge until he gets his way. It’s what the great Nelson Mandela said, “Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.”
Well, I read this beautiful article on resentment and one of Danielle’s pointers as to how to turn resentment around goes as follows:
“Own that you are in charge of what you do. YOU CHOOSE to be there, to give it, to respond, walk away, show up, do it with swagger, with grace, or with vengeance. Your energy, your choice.”
Wow. Stop right in your tracks, Linds. What the f$%k have I been doing all these years? Clearly, if I had genuinely took responsibility as I so proclaimed to the world — there would be no resentment. Because if I had taken responsibility like I said, there wouldn’t have been any room to be angry with anyone else because the responsibility was on ME. I CHOSE that. Nobody forced me into that decision.
So, I realized so clearly for the first time, that I didn’t truly take responsibility. I mean, in some ways I did but energetically — it just wasn’t there. I took the actions to back my responsibility but I did so in a way as if I were forced (which is where the resentment snuck in and choked me).
See how the mind works?
And because I was held to an extreme of accountability from one party, I enslaved myself. I put myself in a jail. And as a result of this? The resentment for the other end grew deeper and deeper.
And because that grew deeper and deeper, I became harder and harder on myself.
It was a vicious cycle.
So what had to take place? And what still takes place today?
Lots of forgiveness, like on a regular basis. I have always been extremely hard on myself, unrealistically hard on myself. So forgiveness is something I must constantly practice. Forgiveness of myself and of others involved. But mostly myself.
And how do human beings get rid of resentment? Well, first and foremost, take full responsibility. Visualize what that looks like. See yourself taking responsibility with pride and love. See yourself in full and unshakeable support of the decision you’ve made. Feel what it feels like to happily and proudly take full responsibility.
Secondly and of equal importance, actually intertwined with the above practice, expression. Lets say for instance you have become resentful towards your partner because he/she doesn’t clean something up after you’ve asked them to do so. Well, you stopped expressing yourself and as a result grew resentful. First and foremost, take responsibility for the fact that you are choosing to allow this to bother you. The other person did not make you feel any certain way. Something they did triggered something within you, but you have the power to change that association. So express it. Write it down, express it to that person, scream it aloud in your car with the music blasting so nobody can hear you, take a kick boxing class while thinking of it…
Resentment is a result of not expressing something and keeping something in. So find a way to get it out. Detox your beautiful being from the poison.
Thirdly, bring forth gratitude. For the other person. For the blessing of the struggle. For yourself. Resentment is there to tell you that you need to forgive and express yourself. Resentment is just a result of something going on in the inside. Resentment serves its purpose, even though it’s no fun. Bring forth gratitude for the one who has been pissing you off and the one you feel resentment towards. They are a beautiful blessing in your life. This is just an issue that is being brought forth to heal. What a beautiful gift that is.
Forgive. Express. Take Responsibility. Gratitude.
You got this.