Resentment Ruins Relationships: How to Forgive

If you remained in a relationship after a negative event, then, by default, you agreed to forgive. So you might as well do it the right way.

1. Label the baggage you bring into the relationship

It’s important to be aware of the baggage you bring into a relationship, and understand how it contributes to the way you deal with conflict. Sometimes, emotional scars from previous relationships leave us more sensitive to certain words and situations. As a result, you are more likely to overreact in a trigger moment.

2. Be mindful of unrealistic expectations

A lot of times the expectations we have of our partners are so high we wouldn’t be able to meet them. Be mindful of your rules, requirements, and why you’re implementing them. Is it due to past relationship disappointments? Are they a product of your upbringing? And would you forgive yourself if you broke those rules? Figure out why you tend to hold your partner to such high standards. Take a moment to evaluate yourself, and if you do not meet those standards, then it’s time to lower them. It will help greatly in the process of letting go of resentment.

3. Reminisce the positive side of the relationship

One of the most effective ways to let go of resentment is to focus your energy on happy memories. When resentment hits, make a conscious effort to counter your negative thoughts with positive ones. Remember the good times. And whenever you overcome adversity as a couple, celebrate it and let go of grudges. Don’t hold them as reminders of each other’s shortcomings and flaws.

4. Address recurring fights

Recurring fights are your clues to deep rooted problems, which should be addressed. And resentment is the primary cause of these fights. When you leave past hurts unresolved they resurface, and they can turn a peaceful conversation into an argument. Before you know it, each partner is throwing hurtful words at the other in hopes of coming out the “winner”. But we all know fights within a relationship never yield a winner. The people involved are simply denting each others’ confidence and self-worth. And while so much effort is expended on proving the other person wrong, the relationship is nosediving.

Positive thinker. Happiness seeker. Wife. Mother. Perpetually curious.

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