Burnout to Leadership

Ep#30 7 tips to reduce resentment

April 29, 2022 Season 1 Episode 30
Burnout to Leadership
Ep#30 7 tips to reduce resentment
Show Notes Transcript
  • The connection between resentment and envy
  • Why we resent people and can't stop
  • How resentment stops us feeling joy
  • 7 tips to reduce resentment

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Hi everyone, my name is Dex Randall, and this is the Burnout To Leadership podcast, where I teach professional men to recover from burnout and get back to passion and reward at work. Hello, my friends, this is Dex. And I've got a great episode today. You're gonna love it. Let's get into the grisly mess of resentment, shall we? Of course, if you don't have any, and have never had any don't listen, this isn't for you. For the remaining 100% of humanity, listen hard, because resentments hurting you, your mind, body, soul and your sense of humor. It's hurting you badly, deeply, probably continuously and perhaps irrevocably. It's hurting your future. It's hurting your relationships. It's hurting your kids. It's hurting your heart. Because we humans, have a great line in doubling down on resentment each time it comes to mind. We justify it more strongly, more fervently, why the other person or people did a bad thing. And we need to uphold a righteous defense against the whole outrageous insult of it. So bloody futile. It's like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies. Eckhart Tolle says resentment is the emotion that goes with complaining and the mental labelling of people. And that's even more energy to the ego. Resentment means to feel bitter, indignant, aggrieved or offended. What you react to in another, you strengthen in yourself. And there are three basic reasons we resent people. Number one, we're envious of them because they have something we don't money, property, status, a Lamborghini, white male privilege, love marriage, children, a life of apparent ease. Or they didn't according to us, earn the thing they have. Or they got away with something we can't let ourselves get away with, cheating, lying, fraud, bullying or even telling the truth. Or they took opportunities that we think aren't or weren't available to us promotion, education, career change. The number two reason is we think they did a bad thing either to us. We might think they treated us unfairly or meaning callous, hurt us physically or emotionally, neglected us in our needs or didn't give us something we feel we're entitled to, wages, love, care, consideration, respect, fairness, promotion, job security, reputation or money. Or maybe they did a bad thing to the world, which obviously includes us. We might think they're evil politicians or bad bosses or corporate tax avoiders or environment destroyers or exploiters of humanity. And one of my favorite personal examples of this is kind of hilarious because it's so utterly done. I love to resent my noisy neighbors. I've got one, now who's got a lawn mower with a really high pitch whine to it that disturbs my peace on the regular. He's used the each of the last three days over Easter. He just doesn't have that much lawn you know? Actually, every time it comes up, I laugh at myself. It's just so daft, I can see through that one pretty quickly. Anyway, the third reason we might get a resentment is somebody or some other people didn't give us what we wanted. And probably we think they should have, we might consider ourselves overlooked, disrespected, maligned, distrusted, ignored, uncared for, maybe they didn't give us attention or love or weren't faithful. But if you look at all the ways we can drum up resentment, they're all about me. They're all about my ego, my wants, my entitlements. It's all about a front indignation at the total lack of respect and care, for me. Because when somebody does something bad to other people, we don't tend to experience envy. So, the feeling we get likely won't be resentment. It might be another negative emotion, but probably not resentment. So if we think of resentment as an ego feeling, it becomes a little bit easier to see why we feel so powerless. It's always about someone else who did or did not do something that removed or withheld happiness from us. We tell ourselves it's outside our control, we kind of assume helplessness. And the second thing it becomes easier to see is why resentment is so addictive, why we seek it, cling to it, cultivate it and practice it. We make a stronger and stronger case for why we're right. And then we don't let it go. This is really our subconscious rebelling against an ego attack. And by the way, if resentment generates a stress response, that's part of the addiction too, that little spurt of energy we get in fight or flight. And then the third thing it becomes easier to see is how resentment is not likely to do us very much good in the long run. In fact, dwelling in resentment generating and sustaining this negative, stuck, helpless energy inside of us, is toxic to our systems. It might keep us in fight or flight, it might create bodily tension that disrupts digestion and invites disease, it might upset our biorhythms of sleep, blood pressure, heart rate, cognitive function and so on. Or we might just eat a whole lot to avoid the pain of it. And let's not forget spending time nurturing our resentments makes us less likely to embrace opportunities to experience joy, love, peace and happiness. Resentments actually undermine our self confidence, as we see ourselves as impotent, neglected, disrespected. It's all picture of ourselves that's looking more and more shabby here, because don't forget the other person isn't even here. They probably aren't thinking about us and our resentment. But we're reinforcing in ourselves, all the things we don't want and giving away what we do, all our power, enjoyment connection to our own loving hearts. While room in resentment, we won't even see our own kids or the dog or the beautiful tree outside the window. We won't even enjoy what we're eating. And if we get gossipy about our resentments, we're spreading malice even further a field, trying to get others to agree that we're right so they can hate on the person like we do. So, okay, resentment. What's to like about it? Well, you tell me because I'm not really seeing it. We can feel righteous, that's about it but do you want to feel righteous at the cost of all the internal stress and long term damage resentment does? I mean, that's shit is shortening your life. Righteousness also disconnects us from other people, we take the kind of moral high ground, and then no one else can join us up there. We cultivate a habit of judging others and distancing ourselves from them, that doesn't sound like fun, huh? So it's back to, do you wanna be right or do you wanna be happy? Because life is never gonna be fair, and ideally, the way your brain thinks it should be. It's not supposed to be, life's 50/50, and I think you can deal with that. I think as adults, we all know how. Some people, when they're talking about resentment say that the cure for resentment is forgiveness and hence the expression, "You forgive once and done, but resentment requires effort all day, every day." I don't really believe the forgiveness part, I don't think forgiveness fixes resentment necessarily, because resentment is self referential, it's about what someone else did to us. So forgiveness isn't gonna fix that, instead, I think we need to let go of our ego need to nurture the resentment that's crippling us, we simply need to let go of the upfront, and here are my top seven tips to do that. Number one, first and foremost, don't take life personally, it hurts a lot less when you're still making everything about you, other people behave in accordance with their own values and do things to create the perception of safety, comfort and happiness for themselves, their motivation is very rarely you. Number two, quit having expectations of others and what they should do to make you happy, because they're never gonna do it for one, and also because you've outsourced your happiness to something external that may be unavailable or unreliable. And really also, other people can't control your happiness, even if they want to. So number three, stop being the victim of circumstances, self explanatory. Number four, stop telling yourself you can't fix it, that you can't create or attract or go get whatever it is that you do want, you can't make yourself happy. If in any case, happiness comes from your thoughts, so stop giving away your own power there. Number five, stop separating yourself from other people by dwelling endlessly on their qualities that you don't like. Number six, stop telling yourself any story about what's not possible, because how will that help whatever you can imagine is real, is possible, can become possible. And number seven, for those of you who self coach using the model as my clients do, I recommend really seeing your resentment in a model, writing it down in the cold, hard light of day, and then you can have a little giggle about it. I mean, it's not serious, it's only life, it's only your human brain doing what human brains do, and when you've seen it written down, you can design how you'd like to think and invite yourself to go into that new thought and when you do that, you let go of the old, you're recalling your energy and power. I shot through that list of seven tips, if you can't remember any of those, have a look at the podcast transcript and you'll see them there. Releasing yourself from resentment is so freeing that is worth practicing and it's worth practicing some of these tips for yourself. But let me close on this by Pema Chödrön, "The way I regard those who hurt me today will affect how I experience the world in the future. In any encounter, we have a choice, we can strengthen our resentment or our understanding and empathy. We can widen the gap between ourselves and others or lessen it." And the truth really is, resentment separates you from yourself, it stops you enjoying being you. I'm trying not to treat myself that way anymore, I choose love where I can, and you can choose that too. So that's it for today, thanks for listening. I hope that was useful to you, if you yourself are in burnout and experiencing resentment, you must come and talk to me about how to recover quickly and sustainably from burnout and get back to your best performance and enjoyment inside work and out. If you're a coach, and you want to learn burnout coaching skills, come and join my advanced burnout coach training. Come and teach you these skills and many others. If you're in burnout and ready to recover, come and join my Burnout to leadership program. You can book in to talk with me at burnout.dexrandall.com. Just tell me what's bugging you and let's make a plan to fix it.