Resentment colors all my relationships negatively.
I have been taught all my life how important it is to forgive others. I thought that I was doing this and perhaps in some cases I was. In support meetings I learned about resenting. Resentment and not forgiving are very close if not the same thing. I learned that holding bitterness for another only hurts me.
Although I did not know how to protect myself without resentment I was determined not to be a victim. I learned that hostility and bitterness maintain and preserve my pain. Resenting will color all my relationships in negative ways. As I learned I began to think about trying to let it go.
As I worked through steps 4-9 and prayed for help to let go of bitterness and to forgive others, my heart began to soften. Resentment hides and sometimes still comes up. It always surprises me, but now I know what to call it and how to let it go.
“Expectations are premeditated resentments” helps me to let go and not create so much bitterness in my life. When I see myself and others clearly I can love others but protect myself. I will not be a victim of the pain that resentment causes.
Expectation = Resentment.
“An expectation is a premeditated resentment”. “Resentments can be cured by gratitude”. “When I feel anger, resentment or fear, I ask God to help me feel it, learn from it, and release it”. “Resentments, self-righteousness and self-pity always come through”. “Resentments mark the places where I see myself as a victim”.
It is taking me awhile to let go of being a victim. I do not consciously think of myself as a victim. But, as I learn from reading and from support groups, I realize that I do think and act like I am a victim of my circumstances and have no choices. This is an attitude that is deeply ingrained and affects all areas of my life.
I did not want my resentments anymore but had no idea how to get rid of them! When I realized that my resentments were not necessary and really did not protect me from the people around me or from my circumstances, I was ready to let them go. The sayings above and the atonement of Jesus Christ are helping me to slowly root out my resentments and my victim attitude.
I have choices and I can choose to dream and do and become. Today I choose to let go of resentments. I am not a victim! A creative and loving God is my father. I can choose to be grateful, creative, loving and happy.
“Resentments are premeditated expectations”. This saying helped me put my resentments in perspective. Resentment is me putting expectations on someone else. I have finally realized that I am in charge of my own resentments. My resentment is not someone else’s responsibility.
When I see that I have resentment towards someone, I can look to my expectations and readjust my thinking and beliefs. For example: I have a friend that is almost always late and never ready when I go to pick him up. Anger, anxiety and stress would start to take over. I realized that I was putting my own expectations on his behavior. I can tell my friend that I will pick him up earlier than I really need to and read a book or something while I wait for him to finish getting ready, or tell him that I will meet him at our destination.
When I work hard to make sure I am not putting expectations on someone else, I feel much less anxious and more relaxed. I can set standards for myself, but I have no right to set standards for someone else!
Here I am working full-time, taking care of the kids, making dinner, doing laundry, grocery shopping, having family home evening and family prayers, planning the vacations, cleaning the house, etc. As I make dinner yet again after a long day at work I silently complain about my loved one who doesn’t help out around the house.
Then I remember the tools I am learning in support groups. Where is my attitude of gratitude that I have been cultivating? I am thankful for my energy and ability to work hard. I am thankful for my legs and arms that support me as I make this dinner. I am thankful for my eyes that see my adorable children.
As my gratitude list grows my mood lightens and my mind is more at ease. I have more energy and feel more in control of my life. I notice that I am enjoying this task of making a delicious dinner for my family. I call them in with a smile to help me finish up and set the table. Gratitude helps me to be happy, feel peace and to see things as they really are.