Why Do I Hold a Grudge?
I’ve been working really hard as of the last year to really work on myself. I am striving to become a better me and better understand myself, because I want to bring a positive light to those around me. With that, I’ve had to face some hard truths – I’m stubborn as hell and I can hold a mean grudge…many of you know this, but has this held me back? How has this pushed me forward in life? Stubbornness doesn’t have to be bad when harnessed the right way. But have I always used for the greater good? It’s questions like these that have left me asking myself why do I hold a grudge? Why can’t I let go of shit?
Life Experiences Mold Our Behaviors
I’ve chosen to persevere during certain times in my life and constantly look for the solution, how to get to the next step, and even how to just figure out how to survive emotionally. Feelings are important and it’s important we allow ourselves time to process them. I know this perseverance comes from the fact that I’m stubborn and don’t allow myself to settle for anything less than what I’m capable of, what my dreams are, or what I’m worth.
Another thing I’ve learned about myself that I’ve always known, but not really why, is that I can hold a mean grudge. It has taken some serious reflection to understand WHY it feels impossible for me to just let something go.
I have always felt this was something broken about me. That holding a grudge was something wrong with me, but I don’t think there is. Maybe it was a survival mechanism because for so long it was necessary for me to be able to continue pushing through certain times in my life. Maybe it’s just because I’m tired of giving my all and being met with disappointment. Boundaries are good, and I’m learning this…slowly. For me, a grudge is my defense mechanism. Does that mean I need to work better with my boundaries or acceptance? Maybe. Probably.
Why Does it Have to be a Bad Thing?
Here’s the thing though, holding a grudge isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and I’m not going to beat myself up any longer when this happens. Sometimes holding a grudge doesn’t come from feeling wronged, or thinking you’re right and refusing to admit otherwise. Sometimes it’s flat out about self-preservation. Just like I said before, it’s a defense mechanism.
If you’re like me, you love with your whole heart, and when you learn that’s not reciprocated, or realize you’re not being treated the way in which you deserve, you pull back. I never want to hurt the feelings of others, it’s never ever my intention, so I’ll sit with those feelings silently. And I’ll cry about it. But I won’t say anything. It’s like I’m incapable of allowing that conversation to be opened because of the rejection that can and likely will ensue. I don’t do well with rejection.
For me, holding a grudge is about protecting myself. I let you in and you broke that trust. Even though I have every right to state those feelings, I won’t because I don’t want to cause hurt feelings….despite the heart crushing ones I’m experiencing.
Self-Acceptance and Grace
Here’s what I’ve decided…it’s OKAY for me to hold a grudge and I won’t apologize for doing so. I also won’t force myself to change in this area, but I do need to learn it’s okay to say my bit. I deserve that closure just as much as anyone else, as do you. Life is short. I’m tired of feeling as if I’m dancing around the feelings of others for the sake of their feelings, and neglecting my own. I have value, too. My feelings and self-worth are just as valid as anyone else’s, and I need to allow myself the same grace I provide others.
I’m slowly starting to allow myself to say those things though. As much as it feels good, I’m also realizing I need to be 100% ready to accept the potential rejection. That’s not an easy pill to swallow, but I’m doing my best. I won’t lie, I’m choosing to push myself primarily because of my children – what does it say to them if I’m going to allow others to not treat me with the value I deserve?
You know the old saying “it’s their loss”….well, it’s true because I’m a damn good friend. I know it in my heart. My intentions are pure and I’m someone you truly want in your corner, but if you don’t want me there, so be it.
I’m Giving You Permission and a Challenge
I’m giving you all permission to accept this “negative characteristic” about yourself if you’re a fellow grudge-holder. I do challenge you to dig deep so you can truly understand WHY you are a grudge holder. Truly ask yourself – why do I hold a grudge? Do you have room to grow from that revelation in one way or another?
Say it with me…”You don’t get to pick how much of me you get – you get all or nothing because real and authentic. I don’t do superficial. And damn it, I’m worth it because in all honesty, I’m fucking awesome”.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, so please leave a comment!