Have you ever heard the saying from Confucius, “Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves”?
You want to exact revenge because you want others to feel the pain and embarrassment that particular situation caused you. Even though the need for revenge can be understandable, it is not healthy.
Retaliation is normal whether you just lost a mini-golf game, your favorite sports team loses, your partner cheats on you or someone accidentally bumps shoulders with you on the sidewalk.
These events create chemical changes in your brain, causing immediate stress on your body. Taking that stress and aggression out on somebody, whether they caused you the pain or not, seems like the right thing to do to get your hormones back to normal.
Is there a way to overcome these feelings of revenge without causing any harm?
Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and retired psychiatrist, Judith Eve Lipton, MD, shares why retaliation is normal but harmful, as well as ways to overcome your feelings of revenge in a healthy way.