One Little Thing: Holding a Grudge

Oh we all get our knickers in a knot every now and then. Lord knows I do. Yes even sweet little me.

Another version of this was going around Facebook a few weeks ago. I couldn't copy it so I painted my own. Don't know who said it.

And the old me used to carry her anger around for way longer than necessary. Pouting, by any other name. Unattractive in a child; ridiculous in a grown-up. My sister and I used to joke when one would ask “Are you okay?” and the other would answer in a squeaky, desperately not okay voice: “I’m fine!” I actually think she cured me of it.

But this grudge business is seriously not okay. Not only are you letting someone live rent-free in your head; honey he’s living rent-free in your heart. Do you really want to give your real-estate away like that? Your power? Your happiness?

I had lunch the other day with a smart, beautiful-inside-and-out friend of mine, and we were discussing an acquaintance who is holding a serious grudge. I mean like it’s running her life, possibly ruining her life. My wise beautiful friend repeated what she heard a wise therapist admonish: “Once you make yourself a victim, you’re screwed.”

Holding a grudge is not something that happens to you; it’s a choice you make. It’s choosing the other person–that mean, awful so-and-so–over yourself, over your own happiness. Stop it. You’ve got so much going for you–yes, you do. Choose to get on with your precious life. Don’t give one bit of it away to a person or a relationship that does not serve you. Why would you?

This Buddha, a gift from a beloved teacher, carries a sack of goodies. May all that you carry be good for you.


  1. I posted this several weeks ago when it was going around….a real “lightbulb” moment! I finally realized that only I am responsible for “my happy”…glad you got there with me!

  2. Like most of it but not giving away to a person that does
    Not serve you does not sit right
    Sounds very selfish not giving to all
    Even those who. Do not serve us
    I think being kind and forgiving is better for
    Our well being

    1. Thank you Eirami, and you make a very good point. It was not meant in the selfish or “self-serving” sense but in the sense of serving one’s well-being. An example might be an abusive partner, or a hypercritical or manipulative “friend.” Relationships in which one feels used, betrayed, cheated, berated, deceived–these are what I would call relationships that do not “serve” us. I would also say that our budding blog community here, and I, have today been well-served by you, and you have our gratitude.

  3. Reminds me that forgiving is not for the person who has hurt you, but for your own freedom. I’ve heard it said that grudges ” plant a root of bitterness in our soul” not pretty! Thanks- needed to be reminded…

  4. Hi Frances, I love this post. There is a proverb (4:32) like this: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” I think that paints a great picture. We wouldn’t poison our own well, would we?

    Btw, I’m so happy to find your blog! I loved the Bee Cottage series so much- you really made it beautiful.

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