Resentment is a self-inflicted wound. Until you restore your peace of mind, your life will continue to be governed by resentment. Resentment is one of many forms of terminal unhappiness. Denying your feelings is bad for your health. It fuels terminal unhappiness. Harbouring bitterness, anger, guilt, shame, humiliation, resentment and other forms of negative emotions for too long is not good either. Holding onto pain tends to reinforce it rather than reduce it.
Resentment, when left to fester indefinitely, will eventually implode or explode. The pressure of harbouring long term resentment increases when you refuse to resolve the problem according to your satisfaction. Whether you agree to disagree, or you forgive yourself for not being able to forgive, or you find some other way to restore peace and harmony within, you maintain pressure on your body if you can’t find a personally satisfying resolution. You should seek professional help to reconcile this inner conflict, because it is not always easy or wise to do this on your own.
Terminal unhappiness, in the form of resentment settles into vulnerable parts of your body, such as your heart. Or it invades your immune system, or your mind, or your emotions. Resentment extinguishes your spirit.
The weight of resentment is too much to bear. It implodes inside you or it explodes externally. Implosions and explosions are bad for your emotional, mental and spiritual health. If there are too many implosions or explosions, and this continues for too long, the stress it creates eventually impacts on your physical health too. When a building implodes, there is very little left except a great pile of rubble. When a building explodes, the results are the same. Either way, the building has to be replaced if you still want to live there.
You have nothing to lose and so much to gain when you forgive yourself or you forgive another. Look at it this way: When you forgive others, you are doing it for you and your peace of mind. You are not doing for others. When you forgive yourself or others, you restore your dignity. Yes, when you forgive others, their dignity may be restored too, but it is important to your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health that your dignity be restored. That way, you regain a sense of peace.
Forgiveness means that you not only let go of the urge to hurt others because they hurt you. Wishing others harm is a destructive way to use your emotional, mental and spiritual energy. Eventually, it hurts you. It’s a subtle form of self-harm or self-abuse. Forgiveness is letting go of your urge to continue to hurt yourself because others hurt you.
When you restore your dignity and peace, terminal unhappiness is starved instead of being fed by your resentments. You are not showing weakness when you forgive. You are showing strength and wisdom because you know that the past will never, ever be changed. Forgiveness cannot change the past, but it can change your future by cutting off the power that fuels terminal unhappiness in the present. When you finally give up hope that the past should be undone, then you are ready to resolve it. Forgiveness is one way to do it.