Come on girls, admit it, we love to fantasize about revenge. We spend our sleepless nights, plotting at ways to make our exes pay for what they’ve done. We rework conversations in our head, and plan exactly what we’re going to say to that co-worker, when we get the chance. We post subliminal messages on social media and call up our friends to “tsk tsk” along with us. And we even watch movies and read books that fuel the need: How to get revenge 101. Revenge is a must! Right? I mean, how else will I feel satisfied? I need to be vindicated, and Kate needs to know how utterly wrong she is! Somebody needs to teach Mandy a lesson that she will never forget! Mark needs to be put on his place! Right?
But will revenge make you feel better? I mean really make you feel better? Will hurting another person take away your hurt?
Look, I’m no expert, so I sha’nt pretend to be one, but even Confucius implied that embarking on a journey of revenge is like digging two graves. Revenge is self-destructive. Gandhi said: “An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind.”
The truth is that wishing ill-will on someone else, is basically cursing them… their lives… their families. And while I’m all for “shades of black” when it comes to finding the right mascara and hair dye, I’m totally opposed to wishing darkness on anyone’s life. (Even if I feel they “deserve” it) I prefer to be the light, yo!
What does it mean to “be the light“, I hear you ask.
Well it certainly doesn’t mean that you’re happy and chirpy all the time. (Because I will throw you with my shoe) But it does mean that you choose kindness and peace over conflict and anger. I mean, being angry all the time is so overrated (and tiring). Be a light instead! It’s like a holiday away from your own brain. (I know you know what I mean).
Seriously though, being a light means shining light into situations that are dark – intentionally deciding to be a positive force, wherever you find yourself. Showing compassion and kindness to others – and yourself – is a strength, not a weakness! You don’t have to retaliate when someone says or does something nasty to you. You don’t have to get the last word in and you most certainly don’t have to see someone else fail, in order to feel as if you’ve won.
So today I dare you to be completely unashamed to shine. Smile at the guy who just gave you the middle finger during peak traffic and say “I’m sorry” first after an intense argument with a family member. Bite your tongue at an ugly comment from an angry person and choose to love regardless of the cards you are dealt!
Choosing to live a life of forgiveness and grace is not easy. But it is so much more fulfilling and satisfying than revenge and seeing someone else hurt. Kindness always wins. And that’s a fact.