It seems to me that there are many skills and talents
that we undervalue in life. After all, many of us
spend so much of our time on relatively few areas of
ability that it seems kind of a waste to spend that much
time while doing something fairly poorly. One of
those talent areas lies in the art of holding a grudge,
something so common in our lives that it's amazing that we
don't teach college courses in it, or at least have a unit
or two on it in grade school
The first step in successfully holding a grudge is to
convince yourself that you are in the right while the
other person is completely wrong. There isn't a lot
of wiggle room here, either--you must be at least 99%
right and the other person at least 99% wrong. Once
you start to see even the slightest bit of right in the
other person's words or actions, the grudge gets more
difficult to hold, and it may slip away before you know
Secondly, you have to constantly remind yourself of the
injustice that the other person has committed. This
takes a lot of focus and energy, and it doesn't matter if
most of the energy that you're expending is negative in
nature--you have to keep expending that energy if your
grudge is going to survive. Most good grudge-holders
find it useful to re-direct energy that might have been
wasted in other more positive pursuits, such as
encouraging people or doing their jobs well, in order to
maintain the grudge at a high level of effectiveness.
Third, be careful not to let any teachings about the
power of letting go creep into your mind, for they can
seriously undermine the integrity of a good grudge.
Don't pay any attention when someone tells you that you
need to let go of the negative feelings for your own
sake--after all, this is your grudge, and who knows better
than you what's important to your own psyche?
Letting go of the negative feelings that you feel towards
another human being is a sure way to kill the ability to
maintain the grudge, and once you do that, then what's the
point of even having the grudge in the first place?
It's also important that you pay no attention at all to
any positive things that you may hear about the grudged
(yes, I just made the word up. . . ) person, or that you
may see this person do. Also, make sure that you
avoid hearing any explanations about whatever the
situation was, for two of the most dangerous things to any
grudge are compassion and understanding.
The benefits of a good grudge are well worth the
trouble. First of all, you get to experience a
strong sense of self-righteousness, and it grows even
stronger the longer you hold on to the grudge.
You'll also find that your perspective grows narrower and
less open to new things, which means that you'll have less
to think about as time goes on. And don't forget the
amount of sympathy that other people will feel for you
when they know just how badly you've been wronged.
Finally, we all know just how much the grudge affects the
other person--they'll surely be unable to go on with their
normal lives while we're sending all of our negative
energy their way. This type of destructiveness can
only be beneficial to us in our lives.
You've got to
like a good grudge! Even the word itself makes you
feel a certain sense of negative energy, a certain sense
of indignation and discomfort. Holding a good grudge
is an art form, yet it does take practice and
learning. If you do get good at it, though, you can
be sure that with the amount of negative energy that
you're pouring out into the world, you're sure to have an
effect on someone, even if it's just to make someone not
want to be around you anymore. So whenever you have
the chance, make sure that your grudges are as strong as
they can be so that you're sure that you're getting the
full effect out of them.