Forgiveness: 5 Reasons Why You Should Let Go of Resentments

“Forgiveness is the most powerful thing that you can do for your physiology and your spirituality.  Yet, it remains one of the least attractive things to us, largely because our egos rule so unequivocally. To forgive is somehow associated with saying that it is all right, that we accept the evil deed. But this is not forgiveness. Forgiveness means that you fill yourself with love and you radiate that love outward and refuse to hang onto the venom or hatred that was engendered by the behaviors that caused the wounds.” ~ Wayne Dyer

Here are 5 good reasons why you should let go of resentments and allow forgiveness to bring peace and love back into your heart:

1. Forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself

“It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody.” ~ Maya Angelou

Your mind might try to convince you that forgiveness is “letting someone off the hook,” and that you are in fact doing those who mistreated you a favor by forgiving them, but the truth of the matter is that you are doing yourself a favor.

Forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself, to be at peace, to be happy and to be able to sleep at night. You’re not doing this for them, you’re doing it for yourself, to set yourself free from the feelings of hurt, anger, and helplessness that kept both of you attached for so long, and to be at peace.

2. Forgiveness is an act of strength

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute if the strong.” ~ Gandhi 

Contrary to what you have been led to believe, forgiveness is an act of strength. You don’t forgive because you are weak, but because you are strong enough to realize that only by letting go of resentments you will be happy and at peace.

3. Forgiveness is a sign of self-love

“We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Love yourself enough to let go of all the toxicity from your life and free yourself from all the anger, bitterness and resentments. If you’re mad, be mad. Don’t hide and suppress your feelings. Let it all out, but once you’re done with being mad, allow forgiveness to enter your heart. Let go and love! 🙂

4. When you forgive, you find peace

“If you let go a little you will have a little peace; if you let go a lot you will have a lot of peace; if you let go completely you will have complete peace.”Ajahn Chah

Peace of mind is what you find the moment you let go of any grudges and any resentments you might be holding on to. The moment you say to yourself: “It is time to let go, it is time to forgive”, that will be the moment you will find peace. 

5. If you forgive, you will be forgiven

“In this world, you are given as you give. And you are forgiven as you forgive. While you go your way through each lovely day, you create your future as you live.” ~ Peace Pilgrim

In life, we get what we give, and we reap what we sow. And since we’re all humans, and we all make mistakes, the more we forgive others for the past, present and future mistakes, the more others will forgive us when we will make mistakes. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.

~love, Luminita 💫

** When was the last time you truly, deeply forgave someone? It can be someone in your past or present, or it can even be you. You can share your comment in the comment section below 🙂

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Luminita D. Saviuc

Luminita, the Founder of PurposeFairy, is an enthusiastic student of the arts, psychology, and spirituality. Her acclaimed blog post, 15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Happy , was shared by over 1.3 million people on Facebook. Later on, it became the heart of her book, 15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Happy., book that was published by Penguin Random House. For more details check out the 15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Happy Book Page.

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    21, October 2012 at 8:15 am

    When I went through the process of forgiving my ex-husband (of 24 1/2 years, 4 children) and his new wife (6 months after our divorce), I first realized how I was hurting my children. I was dragging them through my grief, bitterness, and wish for revenge by my comments, facial expressions and body language. I knew that I did not want to inflict my hurt feelings on them, and make them feel responsible for my recovery or happiness. I saw my son hiding a picture he was hiding that his father had sent of him and his new wife. I asked (to his amazement) if I could borrow the picture to hang on my bedroom wall. He thought I wanted to throw darts at it, LOL! I told him it was going to be the last thing I saw at night when I went to sleep, so that I would not forget to pray for them. At first, my prayers were rather shallow and actually insincere. But, as I kept it up, I actually realized that I did not want their souls to suffer eternity in hell, then admitted it would be okay if we all went to heaven and they lived next door. In submitting my thoughts to my Savior to inspect and replace with His love, I was able to hand them over to His care, His judgement, His plan. I read the scripture about my forgiveness required forgiving first. I knew that I needed forgiveness and wanted to ensure it so that I would be able to spend eternity with Jesus, because He is the One I serve. By holding unforgiveness, I was letting my enemy win, and my enemy was not my ex and his wife, it was the devil who desires my soul to go to hell, along with theirs and with the souls of my children. I am so grateful for a relationship with the Creator of this World, who knows we are made of clay, but also loves us in spite of all our moles, wrinkles, and minds that wander from the Truth. The more I fill my mind with the Word of God, the more the evil thoughts are replaced by God’s love. I know this makes no sense to those who have no relationship with Jesus, or at least some of it, because spiritual things are understood by the spirit and are not of this carnal, natural world. So, I will leave my story there and pray God will draw you by His Holy Spirit to come to Him for forgiveness and to help you to forgive.

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    30, September 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Well if you are of the Christian faith then Forgiveness and Jesus Christ go hand and hand and yes it is the hardest thiings in the world… The bible make it sound easy. It is not. But if you believe in Jesus and trust Him forgivenes needs to fall in place if you expect him to forgive you! If you are not aChristian and there is no Christ in your life.. Well I see trouble in the meaning of forgiveness then. I do believe you are doing it for yourself and the other person. Otherwise it would be
    self-forgiveness thats all that would be required and Im “sorry forgive me” would not exsist..

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    20, September 2012 at 9:54 pm

    how can u forgive someone who beat and used you all of your married life

    • Reply


      23, October 2012 at 6:39 am

      By forgiving yourself for choosing such a lousy mate. For not knowing your worth and leaving him sooner. Forgiving is not letting them off the hook, it’s for you. It’s for letting go of the life that could have been and accepting your life the way it turned out instead. Because even if you don’t like can only change what you fully accept. Easier said than done. But for every action in this world there is an equal and opposite reaction and for every intention behind that action is your true intention. Your true intention is what you put out in the world And will eventually determine how we will love, live and learn.

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    20, September 2012 at 5:37 pm

    how can i forgive a sister who barred me from a funeral parlour and prevented me from my own fathers funeral,,then tried the same with my mother as theres only two of us and she is older so was in charge of arrangements… i have not and cannot grieve so how can i forgive????

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    Dennis S.

    6, September 2012 at 6:02 pm

    “How many people do you know that go around with the intention to actually hurt somebody?”

    The sad truth is, there ARE people who intend to hurt others, especially those who are helpless, because they enjoy it. Most of us have been fortunate not to have those kinds of people in our lives, and literally can’t believe it’s true. Forgiveness? I’ve been trying to accept and forgive my entire life, understanding all the reasons stated in the above article, but I’ll probably need another whole lifetime to learn.

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    6, September 2012 at 2:23 pm

    “Forgive those who have hurt you for they did what they knew best at that moment.”

    That’s difficult for me to except. I asked the person who hurt me not to do something several times, and yet they did it twice and then some.

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      6, September 2012 at 2:24 pm

      Oops, “accept”

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    16, July 2012 at 7:08 pm

    I am still not really sure what forgiveness is. What does it mean to forgive the man who molested my children? I don’t carry around hate but forgive? I don’t even know what that is let alone how to do it. I have, mostly, dismissed him from my mind but I don’t think I have forgiven him.

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      7, September 2012 at 4:03 am

      Yeah, I think there really is no such thing as forgiveness. I mean, there is a definition of it, but it is a fiction and/or folly. I think when someone knowingly does something horrendous like molesting, you cannot forgive… it wouldn’t even be smart. You have to ‘dismiss’, is the more accurate term, as you already stated, Miriam. You have to say “that person was not really even human. He wasn’t immoral, he was a-moral, and I won’t stay angry or betrayed-feeling because that would make as much sense as feeling angry toward a lion who had attacked my child or a tornado that shredded my house. There is no benefit to me or to my child if I stay angry.” And with people who just do things like lie to us, steal from us, or cheat on us, we have to also dismiss, not forgive. Find other friends who will respect us and lift us up with kindness and compassion, and leave the hurter behind us, without another thought. It is far more empowering actually to accept the blame ourselves, for liars, cheaters, and backstabbers. Like this: “I didn’t judge that person’s character accurately before trusting him or her, but I know what to look out for now and this experience has strengthened me to do a better job next time, in choosing my close friends.” That way, we are telling ourselves that we can and will have better experiences in the future. That we have the power to make it so.

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    3, July 2012 at 7:01 pm

    I have been thinking about this.. shouldn’t one ask for forgiveness so you can forgive him for the mess they created? This is killing me as it makes me feel that he thinks that he hasn’t done anything wrong. But reading this I have to let go of my ego and just forgive him so I don’t go crazy..

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    1, June 2012 at 4:12 am

    Amazing words thanks to all

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    19, May 2012 at 9:35 pm

    Forgiveness is not about letting that person back into ur life,nor is it saying that what they did to you was ok or right,it’s about releasing all the negative attatched to that situation and allowing richer and more positive things to enter ur life,the mind is a funny place for playing games..but remember,u control it,for every negative thought follow it with a positive!

    • Reply


      29, May 2012 at 9:03 pm

      Perfectly said! 🙂

    • Reply


      1, June 2012 at 12:54 pm

      What simple elegance. This point was something I was pondering over and over and over. It is interesting how the simplest concept can be made hard.

      However another point was made that “How many people do you know that go around with the intention to actually hurt somebody? The majority of people are doing the best they can with what they know, where they are and with what they’ve got.” I know 2 individuals that are this toxic and unhappy. I unfortunately have to deal with the regularly…my main goal is to Forgive them and release it but it is hard when I see this evil at work not just on me but to others and not able to say anything. What can I do to take the power back from them and Forgive them for their constant evil?

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        16, July 2012 at 7:56 pm

        The best way I know to deal with these people (and I do it imperfectly) is to realize that toxic and negative people are deeply troubled and hurting. They are always suffering – you at least get a break from them when you are not around them – but they never do. When you can realize that they are suffering – and you have the choice not to suffer – you can feel a little more compassion for their situation. You are not going to fix them, so on and live your life. Again, I don’t always do this too well myself, but when I try I’m always amazed!

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      2, June 2012 at 2:18 pm

      Very EXCELLENT.

  • Reply

    Judy Belmont

    17, May 2012 at 2:55 am

    Great top tips for achieving forgiveness and not being weighed down by bitterness and negativity – if we hold on to being indignant – we lose

  • Reply


    16, May 2012 at 11:58 pm

    I swear this article was written for me personally. I needed to read this so much today. Thank you.

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    16, May 2012 at 9:11 pm

    The day that I realized that forgiveness had absolutely nothing to do with the other party was a “freeing” day for me. You do not even need to let the other party know that you’ve forgiven them, because sometimes we need to forgive but not let someone continue to harm us or bring us down. Letting go of the negativity and pain that anger and resentment feed can be so damaging. This is truly a simple concept, but its not easy to do. It takes work, but it is so worth it. Heads up though, its truly an ongoing process.

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    15, May 2012 at 12:29 am

    Keep these comments coming, please. Many of us really need to hear all these wise words/sayings. Thank you all for sharing!

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    14, May 2012 at 8:37 pm

    I remember someone once telling me “when we hold on to anger and resentment, it is like drinking poison & hoping the other person dies” ~ each time I am able to identify what I am feelins is anger/resentment I repeat that to myself until I feel that sweet release.

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    14, May 2012 at 5:53 pm

    People that have hurt you, and do not acknowledge the hurt, are the ones that suffer the most. I have realized that some people are their own worst enemy, and while they can inflict a lot of damage on others, ultimately they are continuing to hurt themselves. They are selfish, and self-serving. Should you forgive them? Yes, but it does not mean that you accept their behavior. You have a right to maintain boundaries, whether they are approved of or not. Until someone walks in your shoes, you are the one that gets to decide how you feel, how you run your life, what your actions demonstrate about you. Live with integrity towards others, and always have self-respect. Forgiveness is giving yourself permission to let go of all the time you spend dwelling on the sour actions of someone else; it gives you the abililty to find enjoyment and opportunities that are waiting for you!

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    14, May 2012 at 4:51 pm

    There is a quote from Buddha..
    “Hanging on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; You are the one who gets burned.”
    It’s the same with holding on to the negativity of being non-forgiving. I think it is a good quote!!

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      17, May 2012 at 1:10 pm

      Catherine, actually that is the quote that comes to mind whenever I think of forgiveness 🙂 I love it!

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      24, May 2012 at 1:14 am

      Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

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    14, May 2012 at 1:16 pm

    Anger and hatred are like acid – they do the most damage to the container. It is true – the ego wants to hold onto the anger and resentment – and sometimes the sheer adrenaline rush of allowing the rage to take over is seductive – hence a prime cause of ‘road rage’ incidents. Taking a deep breath (or as many as needed) and a mental step back from the situation may not make the perpetrator look any less guilty, but may allow you to let go of the anger enough to get on with life.

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    14, May 2012 at 1:05 pm

    Wow!!! Thank you for these words of wisdom.
    I LOVE this website!!!!

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    14, May 2012 at 12:30 pm

    I guess the question is then,what is forgiveness? Can you forgive someone, recognizing that you still do not trust them? Or forgive someone and recognize that you are at a stage where you cannot be friends with that person? Or forgive someone who is unwilling to take responsibility for themselves or their role in a toxic situation? Or forgive someone who cannot see that your own growth does not equate to their demise? Etc etc. I guess my question is really, how do you forgive someone (and does this mean letting then back into your life) when they are not committed to their own healing? Hurt people hurt people, and while I am struggling through these questions in my own healing process in my daily journeys to become more grounded, I guess I need more clarity and guidance on what forgiveness really means on a concrete level.

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      Mary Ruth

      14, May 2012 at 4:11 pm

      Yes to all your questions. That does not mean letting hurt back into your life, or even telling the person you forgive him. This is about you letting go. Forget about what others are going through. This is about you and the peace you get back when you hang up your ego and let the past go.

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        14, May 2012 at 4:42 pm

        Yes….and the most important thing about all of this is that you FEEL good. It should be a release of your negative feelings…it really has nothing to do with the person you are forgiving…just YOU and how you feel. Whether or not you let that person back into your life is your choice… long as you can continue to feel good about doing it. If it doesn’t feel good… don’t do it.

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    14, May 2012 at 11:16 am

    But what if still someone is chasing you?

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    14, May 2012 at 6:58 am

    I agree,i think about this person day&night,all ive felt is how&when to send my vengence for what he did,being a good friend of mine of many years,after a few days its begining to weigh me me down when theres better things in life to think about!

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    14, May 2012 at 6:15 am

    Why carry resentments…its tiring and draining.Dont let your ego get in the way.Sometimes it can be difficult,but its well worth making up.Smile and feel elevated.