My personal romance history consists of four very different, long and drawn out bouts of mostly toxicity. Not without some joy and fond memories peppered in, but these did not remain focal points and were therefore not nurtured as necessary. Each began with high hopes and assumed potential, but eventually fizzled out into a mutual lack of mature effort and loads of hard feelings. I find it rather frustrating that it’s taken all this time and energy for me to truly understand the part I played in all that mayhem.

Think about an ex of your own for a minute, or anyone in life you are no longer on great terms with. Does their memory invoke a positive or negative reaction? If it’s a negative one, now ask yourself why. Chances are, it’s because you feel this person betrayed you to some degree. Was that thought accompanied by a followup, justifying this negativity with knowledge that “I’m a good person and deserve to be treated better”?

This is not an untrue statement, but it doesn’t justify holding a grudge.

Did you just deny to yourself that you’re holding a grudge because it’s too serious of a word or you’d rather not admit this person still has a hold on you? The definition of grudge is to “harbor ill feelings”, making it an accurate representation of the adverse thoughts you’ve already admitted to. Try owning it. Whatever the best word for it, dwelling on another’s wrongdoing against us is a natural, self protecting instinct. After all, we can’t soon forget and risk being pained or humiliated again, so we instead exist through a fog of fear and mistrust.

I recently read a remarkably spot on article from Psychology Today by Nando Pelusi Ph.D., highlighting humanity’s tendency to keep score by “Injustice Collecting” and the reasoning behind it. I highly recommend taking time to do the same through the following link and even sharing with someone you believe it might benefit:

Little did I know, I was letting Injustice Collecting destroy me. It actively:

- Clouded every ounce of my joy.

- Buried the peace I didn’t even know was achievable.

- Morphed my attitude of gratitude into one of self-pity and resentment.

- Set me up for mass disappointment.

- Often made me physically ill in various ways.

- Inflated my belief that I was entitled to highly irrational expectations of redemption in light of each offense committed.

- And worst of all blinded me to the ugly fact that I was as much an offender as they were.

The ultimate realization that, fundamentally, I am no different from every other person I cross paths with in this life has been my absolute saving grace. I see now the flood of sabotaging mistakes I made, operating on rash feelings, misguided judgment and a fierce self-absorption in everything I believed I deserved. Damn hindsight. Somehow, I’d forgotten my dad’s wise words, reminding me when necessary, throughout my whole life:

The one thing that can ever truly be fair in life is a complexion.

Our endless pursuits in seeking fairness are preventing us from a) living up to our full potential and b) noticing that we’re equally responsible for the way every situation we’re involved in turns out. The counterpart to each new problem we find ourselves in cannot be blamed solely. More damaging yet, lack of accountability also paves the way for more of the same results to culminate.

Carrying this baggage everywhere I went was poisoning my so called efforts to move on and heal from it. Imagine that.

Often in arguments, I’d refer to the simple precept we all learned in school: the Principle of Causation, aka cause and effect, defined as, “noting a relationship between actions or events such that one or more are the result of the other or others.”

Why couldn’t anyone understand that whatever my issue was at that time was valid, worthy of acknowledgment and a direct reaction to their behavior against me? The obsession with making others see that I never would have lashed out had they not … was also destroying me.

So when is enough, enough? For me, it took my role in the complete dissolution of the beautiful family I adored and revolved my whole world around. Impatience, intolerance and my unwillingness to listen helped light the fuse that would blow it all to smithereens. Although not without the glory promised, it taught me the value of letting go, not making snap judgments and the virtue of breathing. In the three years since life was turned upside down, I had to adopt new, healthier practices. My priority now is to intentionally remind myself that, despite whatever the circumstances may be, worrying, taking offense and reacting are detriments I’m no longer willing to risk. Through all my insight thus far, there’s zero reward in doing so.

It has taken a lot of time and self-discipline, but getting right with Jesus and leaning heavily on Him at all times has been my personal cure for my grudge epidemic. Humbly accepting the fact that I do not exist for myself, but to give of myself has gradually demolished the walls around my heart, built entirely of all that baggage I insisted on dragging around. Possessing the empathy to relate with these offenders, or at least understand that the two of us can’t possibly perceive conditions identically, is a plus, too.

My quality of life is officially at an all time high.

Cast Your Cares on Him

“5 Young men, in the same way, submit yourselves to your elders. And all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” 6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, so that in due time He may exalt you. 7 Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded and alert. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in your faith and in the knowledge that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering.” 1 Peter 5–9

Now, on the other side of all that anger, spite and stubborn pride, I’m being accountable and owning my life, intentionally and with passion. If this wisdom I’ve gained can inspire a single person to reevaluate their own behavior, desire to thrive rather than just survive and adopt habits to proactively improve their own quality of life, I’ve fulfilled my purpose. This epidemic isn’t futile. Let’s all be the love and peace we say we wish to see more of in this world and collectively squelch it out!

Sign up today for my complimentary weekly “OWNING MY LIFE” Insight Segment by emailing ‘OPT IN’ to:!

Author's Bio: 

Finding purpose in this world can be a tricky task. I've spent the majority of my thirty eight years lost and wandering, questioning my value and feeling tremendously alone and hopeless. Then, one day there was no more time to sit around, waiting for my break "happen". I decided to quit being a puppet to circumstance and start OWNING MY LIFE. Intentionally and passionately, carving the way to create my own break already. Funny how one day it just clicks: "It's all up to me ... and God".

I have been called to love, serve, teach and lead folks through self transformation, total financial fitness and future success ... and there is a lot to say about it! Raw, real, tough love conversation about things too many of us have yet to be guided properly through.

My journey has been abundant in blessings, often disguised as heart break, delivering me to this exact moment for a very specific purpose. The wealth of information I have to share this side of overcoming assorted abuses, miraculously transforming through Jesus Christ and now transitioning from poverty level single motherhood to financial entrepreneurship alone is staggering.