So I bought a copy of Psychology Today when I went to pick up my prescription on Monday. I started reading it last night and read a few interesting articles. Now, I was previously under the impression that this magazine was intended for “actual psychologists” or students, but it appears to be geared towards the average person. The issues it dealt with were mainly recognizing and dealing with different personality types in the office, how to talk to your divorced parent who's recently begun dating again, that kind of stuff.
But I did read two articles that focused on something I could relate to: risk avoidance and holding grudges.
The former of the two separated people into three personality types, the risk avoider, the risk reducer, and the risk taker. It addressed how adrenaline and endorphins can increase health and decrease some issues like heart problems and stress. I thought about how I used to be a more outgoing person, back when I was more of a risk-taker. I realize, sociologically, I'm supposed to be a risk-taker. I smoke, I drink occasionally (though hardly at all anymore), I used to date a lot. These things are supposed to mean I'm more likely do drink often, take drugs, drive fast, and, in general, jump at opportunities the “average” person would think twice about. Even at my worst, though, I was never the bungee-jumping, sky-diving, mountain-climbing type. I found my adrenaline rushes in other places.
And now I'm thinking I might need to move a little more toward those activities, but smaller. Like canoeing or hiking . . . honestly, anything different. I'm planning on doing something on Friday that I've never done, so that's a start.
The second article I was interested in detailed ways to talk yourself out of holding grudges. Asking if ruminating was really going to solve anything, if there actually are any steps you can take to stop thinking about your “injustices.” Of course, this totally applies to me, as well. I'm a terrible grudge-holder. I remember what people said, how they said it, how they looked at me when they said it. I mentally itemize lists of these injustices and think about them frequently. More specifically, it's really just one or two situations, but I can hold on to them for a long time.
So I thought about it. In the grand scheme of things, will this affect the world in any way? Nope. Is there anything I can do to change it? Not a thing.
My best guess would be an olive branch – extending some sort of peace offering in an attempt to soothe my bruised ego and be The Bigger Person. But I'm not sure I'm ready for that. I want to let go of the grudge, I just don't want to let the other person win.
Kind of defeats the purpose, doesn't it?