Ep. #51 – Letting Go of Your Grudges
“Forgive others, not because they deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace.”
Jonathan L. Huie (Follow him on Twitter: @jonhuie)
In This Episode
You’re going to discover something you can do today which may change your life for good. A simple, but often difficult change in your mindset which will feel like you’ve taken off the shackles that keep you from finding absolute joy. Learning to let go of your grudges.
Listen to this definition to the word “grudge” and ask yourself if this applies in any area of your life
A persistent feeling of ill will or resentment resulting from a past insult or injury.
Do you have that? Ill will, resentment… from a past insult from a past emotional injury? What it is? What happened that injured you?
Have you ever been looking for something you needed and in the process you found something of even more importance or value? That’s what happened to me when I went to look up the definition of the word Grudge.
Get this… the origin of the word grudge comes from the the Old French word “Grouchier” which is the same as a grouch. Remember Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street? Or that old man down the street when you were growing up who was just always mad, no matter what happened or what the kids in the neighborhood were doing.
Are you a grouch or just a grouchy person? Do you maybe know one? The odds are, they’re like that because they still have a “persistent feeling of ill will or resentment resulting from a past insult or injury.”
What’s the consequence of that persistent ill will for the person holding it? This person most likely lives in a daily “Hell” that will remain until this grudge is released. As long as the grudge remains, it’s never ending; it’s eternal because it always resides in your mind.
What’s the consequence of that persistent ill will for the person who injured them? Most likely nothing, if anything it’s guilt, but probably not on the scale of the person holding the grudge.
If you’re a Christian, you surely recall Jesus saying “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Father is our creator… the source of all creation, described as our Father in Jesus’ day. When he said “Father forgive them” he was asking our Universal Mind… our Universal Consciousness to forgive them so the act doesn’t have a greater consequence than the act itself.
Forgive Others so You Can be Forgiven.
In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus says: For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
I’m inclined to believe this is about learning to forgive, so we can have peace in our minds and in our souls. This is the same as what Jesus said on the cross. This is why forgiveness is so important to having peace in our lives. When we don’t forgive, our mind (Father) will be poisoned by the unforgiveness. Even for those who have another faith, this view on the words of Jesus can still apply. This isn’t about the afterlife… it’s about Heaven on Earth, today.
How to Release the Grudge
First of all, if you’ve suffered through some very serious abuse, I hope you realize a 15 minute podcast most likely isn’t going to be the solution to all the pain you feel inside. Professional help is available and I encourage you to seek that out. If someone punches you in the arm and you have a sore spot, we can deal with that. If someone has done the equivalent of shooting you in the chest, you need professional help right away.
This isn’t the time to try to deal with it yourself. Do a little triage and determine your conditions, but be HONEST… don’t let pride stop you from seeking help.
Realize that forgiveness happens within YOU and not TO the other person.
You don’t even have to let them know you’ve forgiven them, in fact, you may not even be able to do that, depending on the situation. This isn’t at all about them, it’s about you. You’re allowing yourself to LET GO of that injury and forgive.
A few months ago I posted an article I wrote about forgiveness. Here it is:
I go into more detail in the article, but I can tell you, forgiveness is a pardoning of something you feel you’re owed. Something that was taken from you and never given back. Usually it’s the expectation we had for someone else’s behaviour which they didn’t fulfill, so now we feel it’s owed to us.
Please go and read the article because it’s much more in-depth. But understand, forgiveness is not about allowing harm, it’s not about lowering your standards in your life, and it doesn’t mean you make yourself vulnerable for further harm.
Realize that, even if the person who harmed you were to pass away today, the pain of the injury wouldn’t pass away. But, you would most likely release the pain, knowing or assuming they’ve now been denied something, even their life.
This isn’t a debate about capital punishment… This isn’t about whether the rightful punishment for some murders, would be the loss of life for the perpetrator. This is about whether the injury is removed when the cause of the injury loses their life. The only thing that happens is the person loses their life. The other person doesn’t come back and the memory of the injury doesn’t go away. What does happen is the mind of the victim sees finality to it all and they realize nothing else or nothing more can be done to fix the injury.
This is a mindset change which can happen at any point. When we accept that there is nothing we can do to remove the injury.
Realize that what happened to you is NOT YOUR FAULT. What happens going forward is completely up to you.
You did not choose to be harmed but you do choose whether you’re going to allow that harm to continue to harm you. This doesn’t mean you’re choose to end the harm and we all smile and move forward, but it does mean we choose to take further actions which will lead us where we want to be, free of the grudge over the past injuries.