Resentment can be defined as bitter indignation at having been treated unfairly. It’s bad feelings toward someone. If left unresolved, these feelings eventually end up eating at you. It will consume your thoughts, energy and time.
Resentment manifests itself in a number of ways:
- Bad feelings
- Ill feelings
- Ill will
If we are honest with ourselves, most of us must admit that we can think of at least one person we resent.
In my case, I used to resent the owner of a business where I applied for a job as a content editor a few weeks back. The position for which I applied seemed so exciting. It wasn’t exactly a perfect fit – I lacked some of the skills that would be advantageous for the position, such as link building. Nevertheless, I put everything into the application process and I ended up getting not only one interview but also a follow-up interview. I was so sure that I was going to get the job. But a few days later, the company sent me an email to inform me that my application was unsuccessful.
I was absolutely devastated. The owner, with whom I had had my first interview, gave me so much hope. He even gave me a second interview. But then he shot me down.
For two weeks, my feelings of resentment towards him grew. I really wanted that job. But then I realised that these bad feelings and bitterness were consuming me. I had to let go of this resentment.
So, in my heart, I forgave the owner and I let go of my resentment. It made me feel much more content and lighter.
And guess what? I got another job last Friday! I’m starting my new job as a digital marketer in less than two weeks.
Effects of resentment
Resentment in your heart will make your soul ill, as it made mine ill. It made me feel down when I should’ve been happy, as I have so much to be grateful for. I should’ve focused more on other opportunities that were waiting for me.
Feelings that accompany resentment are disappointment, anger, and fear. These are not feelings you should allow into your soul, as they can influence you and the people around you negatively. These feelings will make your soul ill.
The thing is, resentment leads to unforgiveness, which leads to bitterness. And bitterness could eventually end up leading to hate.
Do not despair, however. If you take control of the bad feelings you harbour within you and make a decision to stop resenting the people who treated you unfairly, you can break free. Here are six essential steps to help you set the people you resent free.
Steps to letting go of resentment
- Recognise it. Test yourself? Who are the people you resent?
- Think it through. Why do you resent these people?
- Write it down. Writing your feelings down is a good way to make sense of them.
- Work it out. Find ways to get over your resentment. Forgive.
- Talk it out. Confess your feelings of resentment to someone you can trust. Talking helps.
- Give it up. Finally, make a commitment to let go of the resentment completely.
Don’t worry. Don’t resent. Be happy.