How to see Resentment as an Invitation

Last week, while listening to a program about self-care coping strategies, I heard a therapist talk about what she recommends to clients who feel resentful – a harmful, debilitating state of mind.

She offers this prescription:  

 “The next time you feel resentful, do something pleasurable as soon as possible.” 

Such great advice, I thought to myself, especially for people who have a habit of doing for others at the expense of themselves.

Not that I know anything about that .

These days, things have changed for me when it comes to resentment.  After marinating in bitterness and frustration over the years, (just writing that makes me cringe), I’ve learned to remember who’s in charge of my life.

If I’m doing something that has to be done, like helping a loved one who needs care or support, I stop the mental moaning that fuels resentment.  

I no longer quietly complain to myself while doing it. 

The truth is, life comes with obligations and commitments that aren’t always easy and we make it worse by griping about it.

I’ve also learned to stop and consider, really consider, whether or not I want to do something before I say yes.  

And if I do say yes by mistake (which I still do because there’s no perfection when it comes to personal growth), I love myself anyway.

Now I’m doing something else, too…  

Using pleasure to mitigate or eliminate resentment.

When I think about the times I’ve been resentful, it was usually because I felt like someone else was getting something I wanted – time to rest or to create, or a spacious day without having to rush or worry. 

If I’d been given that simple prescription long ago (and followed it!) I would’ve done a better job of protecting my health, my relationships, and my sanity. 

So I’m taking this great, new advice.

Yesterday I chose a day of pleasure and rest instead of writing.

Which is why this blog is coming to you on Monday.

Do it!  It works (and feels sooooo good ).   

This Week's Video

It takes courage to make new choices that eliminate resentment.  You’ll find inspiration in this week’s video. You can watch it here.  Thanks for the inspiration, Ash!



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Cheryl Richardson

Cheryl Richardson is the author of The New York Times bestselling books, Take Time for Your Life, Life Makeovers, Stand Up for Your Life, The Unmistakable Touch of Grace and her new book The Art of Extreme Self Care. She was the first president of the International Coach Federation and holds one of their first Master Certified Coach credentials.

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