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The Grudge Report
Photo: Naveen Saxena
Holding a grudge may kill you. While research into the effects of forgiveness on health is still relatively new, there’s evidence that withholding it may contribute to:

  • Cardiovascular Effects. In one study, college students who focused on a personal grudge showed elevated blood pressure and heart rates. When they imagined they’d forgiven their offenders, both returned to normal.

  • Nervous System Effects. In the same study, students experienced increased muscle tension and feelings of being less in control when they focused on a grudge.

The International Forgiveness Institute in Madison, Wisconsin, suggests that, it you’re holding a grudge, you should: acknowledge your pain, commit to forgiveness (recognizing that change is needed), find a new way to think about the person who wronged you, and begin to recognize the relief brought on by forgiveness.

Mayo Clinic Health Letter

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Reprinted with permission from Vibrant Life, November/December 2006. Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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