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The Sabotage of Self-sabotage: Resentments


The Sabotage of Self-sabotage

Emotional, Psychological & Relational Empowerment for Students



It was, to the outside world, quite a weird set-up. Two neighbouring farms of equal size with equal numbers of cattle and other livestock, and each family was made up of husband, wife and three sons, all of a very similar age.

Nobody ever explained why, but for some reason the relationships between the two families were strained even at the best of times. There just always seemed to be a negative competitive atmosphere between them, as individuals, and as businesses.

One day the youngest son of family ‘A’ was returning to the barn area of their property, pulling two fully loaded trailers of straw to be dispatched that week. He knew it was going to pour down and he needed to get the produce under cover or they could lose a year’s harvest of two fields.

For s split second, as his tractor suddenly listed to one side, he thought he had driven off the country lane, only to discover that the back tyre was completely deflated. 

He had 15-minutes at the very best before the clouds burst. Disaster loomed. He was two miles from his homestead, but only 200 meters away from farm ‘B’. 

He had no choice. 

He had to ask for help, and so he started to walk towards his competitors farm.

In his head, the conversations began with him making his mind up as to what the other farmer was going to say and how he was going to feel. “He’s going to love this. He’s going to feel really smug about this. ‘Oh so you want my assistance do you? Give me one good reason why I should step in to help you out after all these years of coldness.’ ” And as he allowed the imaginary mockery to build-up in his mind, because of the lack of emotional intelligence, he got more and more angry.

He banged on the door and waited, adrenalin pumping. When the door opened and the youngest son of family B stood there, he wanted to ask for help, but then heard himself through gritted teeth: ‘I don’t need your pathetic help’, before turning on his heels and storming off. And he was right, the rain poured.  

Resentments have been described as the ‘number 1 offender’ in marriages, recovery programmes, and most systemic conflict scenarios. 

They are, it is widely believed, a very common underlying cause of many forms of relationship decay. 

Numerous mental and physical ills can be frequently linked to this unhealthy condition of harbouring resentments. 

Resentment do not punish anyone but ourselves. We can’t hold resentments and expect to be able to focus, concentrate or even just sit quietly and enjoy the birds singing.  

Trying to deny or ignore resentments, in contrast to trying to learn how to deal with them in a healthy way, will almost certainly produce Self-sabotage and/or a significant quality of contribution to the quality of results you achieve. 

Let’s look at Resentments.

In order to understand the self-sabotaging dynamic of Resentments, all we need to do is split the word into two: Re & Sentiment. 

A Resentment is a feeling that we never truly recognise of acknowledge, and so it keeps re-surfacing under certain and specific conditions.

If through your childhood you had dictatorial parents, and today at University, you find your professor is of the same approach – guess what, if as a child you successfully managed to bury your feelings of injustice, hurt, and anxiety, you are really going to find it difficult to listen to your professor.

When we resent, we may feel injured, violated, low in self-esteem, wanting to retaliate through anger and bitterness.

Life can become a protest.

Case Scenario:

I resent my boss because he doesn’t care to hear my explanation of why I am depressed. This affects my self-esteem, triggering my suppressed anger, making me feel even more depressed.


On a scale of one to ten, how much does resentment negatively affect your life? Number one indicates that it has little effect. Number ten indicates that it has a great  negative effect . 

Circle where you are today.

1          2          3          4          5         6          7         8          9          10

Freedom from resentments comes quite easily, with the right insights and assistance.

Through Are You Ok, personal one-to-one guidance is available, in a very relaxed mentoring atmosphere, suitable to your own personal and confidential needs.

If you feel that this is something you would like to engage with for the duration of your studies, alongside the benefits of everything our website offers, please contact our senior development supervisor (Colin Garnett)  


Colin & Deanna Garnett 

BA Th, Dip Addiction & Child Psychology & BA LLB respectively.


© Colin Garnett 2022.