How can resentment lead to depression?Welcome To Live Better with Your Host Yasmin Shiraz. This is the third week of our series on depression. Like our previous two weeks, we’re taking a short example from the book, Feeling Good by Dr. David Burns. The book Feeling Good deals with helping those who suffer from depression. This series is inspired by an audience member who made a request for a podcast dealing with depression.


So, I’m going to ask you three questions to get us started.

  1. Do you tell yourself, “I should do this?”

  2. Do you tell yourself, “I ought to do that?”

  3. Do you ever feel bad after you give yourself a bunch of shoulds and oughts?”


If you answered yes to the questions, this is how resentment can start in our minds and drain our energy which in turn can lead us to condemning ourselves and not feel good about who we are. According to Dr. Burns, when we give ourselves moralist shoulds and oughts we feel burdened, tense, resentful and guilty. Say for example you say, I should take my cousin to the mall, but you really don’t want to. The fact that you’ve told yourself that you should but deep down you really don’t want to will make you resent the task and feel unpleasant about it. So, what’s the solution? Life is full of things we “should” do right? Depends on how we look at it. Say for example, you brush every morning. And, I hope you do. The dentist tells you, you should. Your parents may have told you, you should. When you’re a kid, it felt like a chore because you didn’t buy into the whole brushing your teeth thing. But, once you understood, I want my teeth to be clean, I want my breath to be fresh, it’s easier to say, “I want to brush my teeth,” not simply, “I should.” Therefore, teeth brushing is something to look forward to.


Now back to your cousin, say you want to take them to the mall, but you want to take him or her to the mall on Saturday instead of Friday. The cousin has been pushy and you’ve given in and agreed to Friday. You convince yourself that you SHOULD take your cousin to the mall and haven’t defined the best time for you. You are likely to feel bad about this because you’ve accepted doing something at a time that isn’t good for you.


When you accept a bunch of SHOULDS and OUGHTS into your life without considering your wants, your scheduling, and your needs, its easy for you to become resentful, angry and burdened. When someone asks me to do something, I make sure I only agree if it’s also convenient for my schedule. That way I don’t feel burdened by whatever it is, but instead I look forward to it.


As I’ve studied depression over the years, I’ve learned that so many things contribute to us feeling bad about ourselves. This tip deals with removing shoulds and oughts so that we can release the feeling of guilt, burden and resentment. Try it for a couple of weeks and see if it makes you feel better.


I’ve hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Live Better with Your Host, Yasmin Shiraz.  The tips provided in this podcast are not a substitute for medical help. If you are in distress, and are feeling depressed, please go see a medical professional. And, if you are in crisis, the National Suicide Help line is 800.273.TALK.

If you have any tips or questions that you’d like me address on my site or on the Live Better podcast, please email me at YShiraz AT YasminShiraz dot net. For more Live Better episodes, please visit , sign up on iTunes or sign up on Stitcher Radio.

See you next time

Peace & Love,


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