Do You Know How to Hold a Grudge?
If you knew that holding a grudge was destroying the love around you, would you continue to hold it? Even if your grudge is not aimed at a loved one, it can still do a lot more damage than you probably bargained for. There is a right and wrong way to hold a grudge, but let’s first introduce you to why you might be holding one in the first place.
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Researchers at the University of Minnesota have suggested that holding a grudge is a tactic that is learned as an insecure infant. If you hold grudges, it may be because you didn’t have the most secure relationship with your mother when you were a child. Perhaps she wasn’t always there when you needed her because she had to divide her time between work, taking care of your siblings, or other responsibilities. But despite your upbringing, recognize that you don’t have to hold a grudge.
Grudges and Romance
Holding a grudge can affect the kind of romantic relationships you have. When seeking out a partner, consider one who has a secure relationship with their mother. If they do, they are less likely to hold grudges too, and your relationship has a 75% higher chance of being lasting and long-term. You should also learn to understand your grudges and work through them before they have the chance to damage your relationships.
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Focusing on the Pain
Holding a grudge means you’re focusing on the pain. You’re letting the pain define you. A lot of people live and die by that pain. Are you one of them? You know there’s no comfort in that. When you are more focused on the pain, sadness and disconnection in your life, you no longer become a person who is openly offering and seeking love.
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When you’re holding a grudge, it is difficult to love someone. And it’s equally hard for others to love you. Holding a grudge pushes you away from what you are ultimate looking forâ€”love. When you hold a grudge, your body releases stress hormones. Have you ever been in the room with a stressed person and you can just feel the negative energy emitting from them? It’s not a very inviting feeling, is it? But if you can release the grudge (forgiveness), you’ll eventually replace the stress hormones with oxytocin, which is the hormone that makes you feel close to others.
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But if you’re going to hold a grudge, make it a good one. Yes, there are good grudges and they are the grudges you should reserve for the people who have wronged you too many times. There are people who are not good to you or for you, and by holding a grudge against them, you are ultimately protecting yourself from being hurt again. Think about it this way: If you tripped over a rock, you’d make a mental note to avoid that rock the next time you were near it. That’s what a good grudge is like. The trick is not to embellish the grudge. A good grudge should be protective in nature, not hateful.
What Your Relationship Needs
Your relationships need good grudges. If your partner does something that angers you, it’s good to express that anger. Then you can hold a slight grudge against that specific behavior, as a reminder to your partner, until that specific behavior is changed. You’re trying to avoid uncontrolled anger, resentment and nagging, which will happen if your feelings aren’t expressed and addressed.