Connection Inner Wisdom Love middle ground Mindfulness Self Discovery

Who is it that’s unhappy? The one who finds fault

Here is more goodness and insights from John Welwood. His book “Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships” has been pivotal in my personal growth and understanding of relationships and love.

Photo by Pixabay on

“The most destructive element in human relationships is the urge to make other people bad or wrong, and then judge, reject, or punish them, for that.”

~ John Welwood from Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships.

Do you recognize this? I certainly do. It’s how many of us respond when we feel hurt by someone else’s words or behavior. We want to get back at them and punish them for being mean and making us feel bad. We feel justified and hold onto this anger and resentment, because it makes us feel more empowered, stronger, and compensates for how helpless and small we really feel inside.

It’s the ultimate booster for our ego and protector of our heart. Unfortunately, when we hold on to the sense of grievance, our heart stays closed. He continues :

“Nursing a grievance – treating our intimate partner, as someone to get back at, or resenting how badly life or other people have treated us – is a self destructive act. For in wanting to hurt or reject someone or something we resent, we unwittingly wind up hurting or rejecting ourselves at the same time…

Most of us are unaware of how invested we are in our grievances and how much they govern our life. To set things right we need to recognize how much we hold on to grudges – and to understand why…

Every grievance has its roots in old hurt about not being fully loved and old frustration about not being able to do anything about it… The mind holding on to grievance is like a full time sentry guard whose job is to remain on the lookout for emotional threats from other people…

The mood of grievance shuts down the channel through which love could enter into us, cutting us off from its healing and regenerative power… It is often hard to let ourselves receive love even when it is available. To let love in requires us to melt.”

John Welwood “Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships”

To heal ourselves, and let love in, we have to melt. Oh boy! After protecting ourselves for so long, letting down our guard can be astonishingly hard. Opening our hearts, makes us feel unsafe and vulnerable. When the ego feels threatened, it can come up with renewed righteous indignation added to the old grievance. This becomes our truth. But it is not the truth.

The answer lies when we begin to look within and recognize the wounds of of our own heart, rather than shoring up our own defenses and looking externally for someone to blame.


23 comments on “Who is it that’s unhappy? The one who finds fault

  1. this is so good to remember

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post, Val. I have also found profound healing in the deep wisdom of Marshall Rosenberg’s NVC. Getting to the heart of our needs and honestly honoring them can be a powerful first step toward healing so that we love more and project less…if that makes sense. 😉


    Liked by 1 person

    • It sure does Carrie. Thank you 💖
      I didn’t know you were an NVCer. I was too. Loved working with Robert Gonzales. Thank you my giraffe friend 🦒

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank YOU, Val. I haven’t engaged formal training with anyone. I’ve been guided by a spiritual director whose an expert in teaching it and facilitating workshops and I’ve done a lot of studying of Rosenberg’s materials, including his books and a course with videos of him teaching on Sounds True. It’s powerful and healing material for sure. Deeply compassionate. 💜

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, look within.  Perhaps be open to something th

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I recognize that finger, years and years it followed me everywhere I went 🤣 We do indeed project ourselves all around, as does every one else. It just takes a little while to realize all those mirrors we keep looking into are reflecting a lesson. A great post Val, and very wise words 😀❤️🙏🏽

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great article.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. There is freedom in forgiveness:

    Each act of forgiveness is, of course, an act of love. ~ Lama Surya Das

    Betrayal by others is a gift which allows us to grow in forgiveness. We betray ourselves by hanging on to every slight, real and imagined.

    Failure to forgive is like swallowing poison and hoping it hurts the other person.

    Be patient with everyone, but above all, with yourself. ~ St. Francis de Sales

    Always forgive your enemies. Nothing annoys them so much. ~ Oscar Wilde

    When we hate our enemies, we are giving them power over us: power over our sleep, our appetites, our blood pressure, our health, and our happiness. Our hate is not hurting them at all, but our hate is turning our own days and nights into a hellish turmoil. ~ Dale Carnegie

    When you have conquered the enemy within, there are no enemies left to conquer.


    Liked by 1 person

  7. A great reminder, Val. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I have found a place that allows me to see the acts of others are just that.
    They can only affect me if I allow it.


    Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: Who is it that’s unhappy? The one who finds fault – Site Title

  10. Well, all i can say is, life is too short to harbor grudges. Best to live open hearted, if one can manage it! ;D xo

    Liked by 1 person

I'd love to hear from you ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: