Reluctant to express yourself for fear of saying the wrong thing or believing it is unacceptable to express frustration, anger, hurt, or any other emotion that is not sweet and tender?
Ever thought if I express my feelings, then I will ruin the quality of my relationships?
The harbinger of resentment is reluctance to express ourselves or fear of voicing our needs and expectations.
Not having clarity about what we expect is a set up for disaster.
Our unexpressed thoughts, feelings needs, and expectations can turn into negative emotions like resentment.
Recently, a friend gave me unsolicited advice. I felt angry as my need for empathy and connection was not met. When I voiced my feelings and needs, his response was to tell me more of how I 'should' be. I became quiet, realizing all I could do was give myself empathy. Had I not done that, I could have harbored resentment expecting him to put himself in my shoes.
Resentment is a 'no win' emotion. The one who resents cannot be understood and others feel at a loss for not being able to please....
As a child I grew accustomed to my feelings being denied because expressing them was met with judgment. So it became easy to deny not only my feelings, but their source, my needs. It was not an unreasonable expectation to want my parent's to meet my emotional needs,but eventually our needs are inside job or responsibility!
What is resentment?
Resentment is the perception of injustice or indignation over perceived insult.
Resentment builds because we do not express our feelings, needs and expectations freely in the moment or soon thereafter.
What is unspoken holds great power. What is not voiced, isn't just ignored, but, festers and weakens the quality of our relationships including the one with ourselves.
Ever met 'nice people' who eventually express a lot of anger towards you that you cannot understand?
Well, sometimes "nice persons" are really very angry (hurt) individuals who withhold a lot and eventually it comes out disproportionately in a present situation.
Having our needs met help us to feel alive. To deny we have needs is to deny our humanity.
It becomes disconnecting to deny our feelings and needs. I used to say 'I am fine,' when I was not and yet held others accountable for my feelings. My sense of self was tied to how others responded to me. In other words, how I perceived others responding to me, determined how I felt about myself. Being at the mercy of others is not a very empowered stance.
Expecting our needs to be met without expressing our needs is unfair.
NO ONE OUTSIDE of 'me' CAN ANTICIPATE MY NEEDS, it is UNREALISTIC.
These unrealistic expectations are subtle form of control as we expect others to meet our needs without voicing our needs or expectations. It is a set up for disappointment.
What is the need that leads to resentment?
Our deep wounds cause us as humans to want to protect ourselves from similar future pain. A need to control arises out of excruciating pain or overwhelm.
We can never control anyone nor how others respond to us. If we worry about how others will respond to us, we misdirect our energy to protecting ourselves by attempting to control or prevent a negative outcome.
A tendency to resent is closely tied to fear of not being accepted as we are.
If I accept myself as I am, then, I am free to voice what I feel, need, want and expect.
Freely expressing myself...and being myself prevents resentment.
We cannot be ourselves if we are not free to express ourselves.
Very recently in a work situation I felt hurt, frustrated and even antagonistic as my need for support, understanding, appreciation and fairness seemed compromised. I voiced some of this, but, the interaction kept replaying in my mind and in my sleep. Had the matter been limited to that interaction, expressing my feelings and needs would have been enough to let go. Something deeper and really old had been touched.
It was old pain of not being heard, emotionally supported, and understood as a child. It was expecting to be supported and understood.
How can such an old wound be healed in the present when it has been festering for a long time?
The good news is that awareness and empathy are always great activators of healing and transformation.
If I resent someone, I can become aware of the expectations I hold.
I can forgive myself for not voicing what I felt in the moment and expecting someone else to know my needs and expectations.
I can be compassionate about my unspoken needs. Some expectations are just old unmet needs.
My willingness to let go of expectations opens up a world of possibilities, surprises, and even miracles.
My willingness to be vulnerable strengthens my voice.
My willingness to express freely is self-honoring.
Can I have empathy for a need to control arising out of a need to self-preserve?
Do I know when I harbor unrealistic expectations?
What triggers me to withhold voicing my needs?