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Jiffy Rental Center
Jiffy Rental Center
Jiffy Rental Center in Riverton, Wyoming
 Holding on to a grudge is hazardous to your health. 

A Buddhist story is told of a man who was shot with an arrow by an unknown assailant. He refused to remove it so that healing could begin, even though his friends begged him to do so. He insisted on wearing the arrow as evidence of the harm done to him. His wound became infected and he eventually died from it. The story asks what killed him… the arrow or the victim’s foolish holding on to it. 

ave you held a grudge to your own detriment?  Nelson Mandela said that holding on to resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for it to kill your enemy.   Yet people often keep a grudge and do more harm to themselves than the original injury.

For most of us, letting go is next to impossible. We turn to ministers, psychiatrists, social workers or friends for help. We know we should forgive and move on, but we cannot do so easily or quickly.   Why? The answer lies in part to our conditioning to believe that forgiveness is a single act -- simply telling the person you forgive them.   But no matter how hard we try, this seldom works. 

As it turns out, forgiveness is a process. It is not lip service or merely saying you forgive someone. The process of forgiveness is a journey that begins one step at a time.  According to Dr. Fred Lufkin of the Stanford Forgiveness Project, when you fail to forgive a hurt or injustice, you have formed a grievance. In doing so, you do three things:

You take something too personally.

You blame others for how you feel.

You create a grievance story in which you are the victim.

The grievance story becomes the arrow within us that we refuse to remove. Dr. Lufkin offers a step by step process to help us get over these injuries in our lives. His advice from his book “Forgive for Good” is invaluable and it was developed out of his own personal experiences and research.   He says that we will know when we have truly forgiven someone because our grievance story changes.  We are no longer the victim when we recount our story. We are the  one who rose above, who chose to forgive without regard to our cost.  We become the hero.

Letting go of a grudge means freedom from the injuries that perplex our lives.   If we refuse to sincerely forgive, we take our arrow of injury with us, sometimes to the grave.  

Dag Hammerskold, former Secretary of the United Nations wrote in 1960: “Forgiveness breaks the chain of casualty because he who forgives you – out of love – takes upon himself the consequences of what you have done.  Forgiveness, therefore, always entails a sacrifice.” 

When you have been injured, you will have forgiven someone when you can accept the consequences of your injury without  resentment.  Ask yourself when you may have taken something too personally.  Don't blame others for how you feel. You choose how you will feel each day.  Begin to change your grievance story by looking for the best in people rather than the worst.  Life is not about keeping score over injuries. 

You conduct the orchestra of your life either out of love or out of hate.  Injuries will happen. Your freedom from the pain of injustices is at stake throughout your life.  Choose wisely and embrace the joy of living free.


Jiffy Rental Center Riverton