For Your Own Well-Being, Don’t Hold a Grudge!

Imagine taking a walk and having to pick up stones along the way.  Imagine picking up one small rock at first.  Is it heavy?  Probably not. Now imagine walking a few more yards and picking up another rock, then another.  Imagine putting all those rocks in your bag as you walk several blocks down your neighborhood.

After some time and some distance, that bag is going to be very heavy.  You will be heavier, dragging and carrying more than your usual weight.  It will hurt your shoulders, your back will start to hurt, your legs will burn and your entire body will ache.

Now, imagine having to make the trip back home with that bag full of heavy rocks.  What do you think will happen by the time you get home? You would be exhausted or worse, injured.

well-beingHolding a grudge against someone is like carrying a bag full of dirt and rocks wherever you go.  Holding it for a very long time is like subjecting yourself to back and forth trips with a bag full of rocks, injuring yourself in return.

What is a grudge?

A grudge is a persistent feeling of resentment towards someone.  Now it might be easy to dismiss and say that you are not really angry at someone or some situation, right?

Here’s how you can check if you are truly free of ill feelings.

Close your eyes and think of that person or situation.  Now imagine that person happy and blessed with all the good things that he or she might wish for.  How do you feel about it?  Do you feel happy for him or her?  Do you feel like there is a sense of injustice in the idea that he or she is happy?  Do you feel cheated?  If you feel negatively about it, then you are still carrying that grudge.

How do you let go of the grudge you’re carrying around?

All the emotions that you decide to nurture, ultimately affect the kind of experiences you have.  If you are happy then you attract positive things into your life.  If you are negative then you form negative patterns, such as blaming others or whining, which in turn produce negative experiences.

Holding a grudge is letting all that negative energy stay with you and form those negative patterns. Notice the things you do when the person you hold a grudge against is near you.  Do you end up swearing?  Do you get upset?  Then notice how you tend to see things negatively afterwards.

Letting go of a grudge is being kind to yourself.  Think of it as letting go of the rocks and stones that you’ve chosen to pick up along the way.

Here’s an exercise you can do to rid yourself of that negativity.

Close your eyes.  Imagine the person you’re holding a grudge against.  Know that that person no longer has power over you.  Whatever that person has done to you, think of it as a photo stamped on a page.  It’s already done and cannot be removed.

But you don’t have to keep reading that same page over and over again.  Imagine tearing that page into tiny pieces and say to yourself and that person, “With love in my heart for both you and myself, I heal this situation by letting this page go.  This page no longer serves me.  I am free of the need to carry this.  I am letting this go.”

Then say a little thank you prayer and smile.