Holding grudges doesn’t make you strong, it makes you bitter. Forgiving doesn’t make you weak, it sets you free.
Why do people hold grudges? The grudge gives us an identity as a person who was “wronged.” People often want someone to blame – even if no one is really at fault. Sometimes, holding grudges—and blaming others—may be a form of self-protection.
In reality, that grudge inhibits our ability to cope with or resolve the issue and keeps us stuck in the past—trapped in an unpleasant event or interaction that causes us distress.
It is worthwhile to release the grudge. Think of the tradeoffs: you could hold onto the past or you can have peace of mind and regain personal energy and a sense of trust that has been wasted with the grudge.
To let go of a grudge, move the focus off of the one who “wronged” you, off of the story of our suffering. Acknowledge the hurt and decide to forgive. It doesn’t mean you have to forget the offense or reconcile, or condone. Sometimes, it is helpful to think about the situation from the other person’s perspective.
Once you’ve let go, don’t go back there. Don’t dwell on it, don’t think about it, don’t talk about it. Enjoy your new energy for positive things.