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How to Let Go of Resentment

Amber Murphy

We all feel resentment, and that’s completely normal. However, it can also significantly impact your life negatively. If you want to feel better, you may want to learn how to let go of resentment. When practiced in moderation and used for good purposes, resentment can be a motivating force in your life. But when allowed to run rampant in your life, it has the capacity for severe damage. In this article, we’ll discuss ways to let go of resentment.

What is Resentment?

Resentment feels like anger, but it’s quite different. Anger is about the present: something happened that made you mad at the moment. Resentment is about the past – something that happened that still makes you mad today. Anger is almost always based on some perceived injustice in your current situation. But, on the other hand, resentment is often based on some perceived injustice that happened to you long ago.

It builds when we don’t get the recognition we deserve for our kindnesses and efforts in a relationship. We spend our time and energy being generous to others, but often it’s at our own expense. If we are not careful, resentment can build up if people aren’t giving back in equal measure.

Resentment may be considered irrational because it dwells on wrongs perceived to have been committed by another person rather than its causes. In other words, people who resent another person often find themselves unable to let go of their feelings toward that particular person. This is partially because of running away from your emotions and not dealing with certain triggers.

7 Ways to Let Go of Resentment

1. Acceptance

Woman with arms open in celebration

Acceptance. It’s the first word you’ll see if you google “ways to let go of resentment.” It’s also a major part of understanding the role resentment plays in your life and how to overcome it. To find peace, you must first accept that resentment is a normal part of life and respond in an empowered way.

Many of us are familiar with the importance of acceptance of illness, death, loss, and grief. However, many people are unaware that acceptance can be as important when dealing with more minor issues like jealousy, anger, and even happiness. We tend to think acceptance means approval-but that isn’t true. You don’t need to approve of someone’s actions or behaviors to accept them. Acceptance is simply accepting what is happening around you and working from there.

In situations where we feel resentful towards someone else or their behavior, we may think that by resisting our feelings or fighting against them, we will create lasting change for ourselves and others. Though this may work for some people in some circumstances, this approach often only leads us away from positive outcomes because it causes us unnecessary stress and suffering along the way.

2. Meditation

Resentment is not a fixed entity, meaning it can be changed, altered, and even eliminated. The good news is that the tools for such a transformation are within your grasp. To let go of resentment, you need to access compassion for yourself and those around you. One of the best ways to do this is through meditation. We offer a meditation for anger practice within our app Declutter The Mind, for free.

Utilizing these practices regularly makes you find that compassionate feelings emerge more naturally in daily life. You’ll start to feel more at ease in your skin and more tolerant towards others when anger strikes. You’ll know how to manage it instead of letting it take over.

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3. Self-Awareness

Self-awareness is the ability to understand yourself and your habits. When you’re self-aware, you have a better sense of what makes you tick. By understanding your personality, behavior, and feelings, you can learn ways to improve yourself and better manage the relationships in your life. And finally let go of someone you love when they aren’t good for you.

To improve your self-awareness, examine your thoughts and feelings honestly. See whether or not they are consistent with how you want to see yourself or what kind of person you want to be. If not, make a conscious effort to change those behaviors that don’t align with how you want others to perceive you.

Being self-aware will help you let go of resentment. It helps cultivate greater emotional intelligence, which includes awareness of other people’s emotions and our moods and reactions. This knowledge helps us understand why we feel negative emotions such as anger, guilt, or shame and provides clarity on how we should respond rather than react in certain situations to overcome those negative emotions that trigger resentment over a perceived wrong done by someone else.

4. Heal From Old Trauma

Two women in conversation seated at a table

If you want to let go of your resentment and bitterness, you must resolve past traumas. You can’t move forward with a heavy burden weighing you down, so it’s essential to resolve any past traumas as soon as possible.

To do this, forgive the ones who hurt you in the past. Maybe they bullied you at school or abused you at home. It doesn’t matter who they are or what they did – if they hurt you in the past, forgive them and try to forget about it.

It might not be easy to forgive people for their wrongdoings, but it will help reduce your anger and resentment towards them. Once you’ve forgiven the people from your past, try to avoid negative people. If someone makes you angry or upset regularly, try to avoid spending time with that person. The more time you spend around someone who upsets or angers you, the more resentful and bitter you will become towards that person (and everyone else).

5. Change Your Perspective

To change your perspective, you need to re-frame your thinking. Why did this situation happen? What can you learn from it? How can you grow from this? How will letting go of resentment benefit you in the long term?

Resentment is all about clinging to an idea or belief, and it’s hard to let go. It’s important to see the other person’s side of things and their motivations for why they did what they did. Maybe your parents never hugged you when you were a kid because they didn’t think that was how children should be shown love.

Something might have happened in their childhood, deciding against touching altogether. If you look at the big picture and realize that many factors influenced how someone behaved towards you, it may make it easier for you to understand why something happened and then move on from it.

6. Embrace Anger, Don’t Let it Control You

There are two important things to understand about anger and resentment. First, it’s a natural emotion that we all experience periodically. And second, where there is anger, there is also almost always a tinge of fear.

Anger has an important function: it’s a defense mechanism designed to protect us from potentially dangerous situations. And as such, your natural inclination may be to control your emotions, such as anger and keep it inside so it doesn’t get out of hand.

But not only can you not eliminate the emotion, but trying to do so could make you more resentful. And even worse, not dealing with your anger in a timely way can allow it to fester into resentment – and then you have something gnawing away at you.

7. Have Gratitude

Woman writing in her gratitude journal

Take time to reflect on what you’re grateful for. One of the benefits of gratitude is that it shifts our perspective from what we don’t have to what we do have. An attitude of gratitude helps us remember that there’s still so much good in our lives despite our challenges.

It’s important to be grateful for everything that has happened in your life, the good, the bad, and even the ugly.

Each experience makes you who you are today and has given you strengths, vulnerabilities, and wisdom you might never have gained otherwise. Think about how far you have come in your life rather than how far you have left. Focus on all the amazing things that fill your heart with joy and make your soul happy. Be thankful for people who love you unconditionally, especially when they see qualities in yourself that you don’t yet see.


In conclusion, resentment is a feeling that is not only painful and unfair, but it will hold you back from being able to move forward in life. It’s also a destructive force that can affect your physical and mental health. It’s a waste of time, energy, and mental space. You can’t get back what you lost, and you can’t change what happened. You can’t undo what was done, but you can learn from it and move forward with your life.

Letting go of bitterness and resentment is important for your well-being, but it can help you live a more positive, happy life free from negative emotions and feelings.

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