Resentment is a negative feeling that can truly damage your mental health. This happens because resentful people are unable to forgive and forget others for the injuries they have caused them.
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Whether it was something someone said or did that hurt them, spiteful people never really manage to find happiness because they go through life with a chip on their shoulders. They lack the resources needed to forgive, and this leads to a deep bitterness inside.
Resentment is different than retaliation
Some people might think that resentment and retaliation go hand in hand, but they are two very different things. Resentment is a feeling of being wounded that makes us want the other person to pay for what they have done.
Retaliation, on the other hand, is when we behave in a hostile manner towards the other person and do everything possible to make their life a living hell for what they’ve done to us.
Although resentment and retaliation do sometimes appear together, a resentful person is normally passive and would never act on their desires. This is something totally different from people who are truly vengeful.
Resentful people bottle up their hatred and anger. They may wish the other person ill, but they rarely act on these thoughts. They devote themselves to criticizing, judging, looking down upon others and spreading their poisonous attitude.
Characteristics of resentful people
Now that we know a little more about resentment, you’re probably asking yourself how to recognize a resentful person or some of the traits to look for.
Let’s take a look at a few of them:
Resentful people never forgive or forget
Some people forgive, but they never forget. Resentful people lie to themselves and say they’ve forgiven someone. But inside, they still harbor negative feelings towards the other person.
They don’t learn from the past
They’re always stuck in the past. They never seem to be able to learn from their negative experiences.
They can never be wrong
People who hold onto feelings of resentment think that they’re perfect and never make mistakes. This makes them really rigid with others that act differently than they’d like.
They’re easily offended
It can be difficult to deal with a resentful person because anything you say or do could offend them in some way.
They think they’re better than others
The hurt that someone has caused them leads them to take on the role of the victim which prevents them from seeing the error of their thinking. Their perception of reality is often wrong.
Life is a soap opera
The life of a spiteful or resentful person revolves around their insecurities and inability to get over the past. It’s like a soap opera where they’re always the victim.
Does this sound like someone familiar? Do you recognize any of these traits in yourself? Resentment, as with any emotion, can be overcome. You just have to be aware of it.
Everybody has the ability to change
If you recognize many of the traits mentioned above, it’s important to check in with the other people in your life. Try to keep an open mind about everything they may tell you.
Talking with others and sharing viewpoints will help you recognize when you may be wrong. This will help you understand why you harbor this resentment inside and what you can do to get rid of it
This can be difficult. Resentful people often deny that they’re that way, thinking they’re forgiving people when they’re actually not.
Therefore, we need to know how to accept honest self-criticism and realize that we’re not going to like everything that comes out our loved ones’ mouths.
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If you know someone or are someone who tends to harbor resentment, keep in mind that everyone has the ability to change.
So don’t think that a resentful person will always be that way. If they become aware of it, they can cease to be that way.