In the event that you have not read Part 1 of this article, please do so at this time by clicking on this link Living with a brain injury – Not letting your Past spoil your Present Part 1
What I have found is that resentment undermines my ability to make healthy and empowering choices. Instead of looking for solutions, resentments unconsciously keep me stuck in patterns of reacting to the pain of my past. Resentments amplify and exacerbate my reactions to present day triggers. Resentments can come out sideways — in the form of over reacting to present day people, places and things that have little or nothing to do with those unresolved resentments.
What I have found is that when I find myself reacting to present triggers; because of pain from my past – I am attempting to force a solutions to avoid having to deal with the pain from my past. What I have found is that in my attempt to avoid the pain, I perpetuate the pain. I have also seen how resentments can negatively impact and alter the course of peoples lives. One only needs to turn on the local news to see how resentments have changed the course of many lives.
With this awareness, I am motivated to make peace with my past.
“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.” Confucius
With this awareness, I realized that it was in my best interest to be rigorously honest with myself.
Practically speaking, this means that I needed to make a list of the people that I have held resentments towards over the years. Work, school, institutions and churches were places from my past that I needed to examine. I also needed to place myself on this list. I was told that this examination was not done to blame anyone, or to berate myself, but to look for patterns. Through examining patterns, I was able to understand why I reacted to events in my life. By examining these patterns, I was able to find freedom from the effects of those resentments.
By examining patterns I was able to make peace with my past
Until I examine these patterns, I will continue to find myself reliving pain from my past expectations through current events.Triggers will remain set until I do the work to remove them from my conscious and unconscious mind. If triggers exist, I need to address the “why”. With this awareness, I need to remember that I am ultimately responsible for how I choose to react or respond to people, places and things in my present. By being accountable to myself, I am empowered in my present. By being accountable to myself, my past will not spoil my present.
For a method to address triggers and resentments, please see my article, Second Chance to Live — Action Steps Revisited — A Synopsis Part 2
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