Getting Over A Guilty Conscience
Guilt can be seen as a wasted emotion
when we take into account that the Earth is a classroom and we are here
to learn lessons. We are bound
to make errors on our journey here and would not be living properly if
we didn't make occasional mistakes.
Yet we can get caught up in
the guilt game when we do the wrong thing, which stops us from moving
forward. What it is about guilt that traps us and makes us feel less
One way to deal with guilt is to first off recognise that this
emotion is only supposed to be a temporary feeling that can lead us to
learning a bigger lesson. Other emotions
like anger, confusion, and even in some cases regret all lead somewhere
and have a
purpose. Anger can tell us something isn't right in our environment and
allow us to take appropriate action, or regret helps us to realise what
we might have done differently, but what is the purpose of guilt when
it hangs onto us and seems to lead nowhere?
The Purpose Of Guilt
Guilt typically occurs when we do something we wish we didn't. We
also may experience shame or a feeling of sorry. We may wish
we could take our actions or words back, often because they were rash and weren't thought
through properly. However guilt does not have to be experienced
we can turn it around to make it more positive in that we don't
repeat the same behaviour ever again
. How can we do this?
Think of a time when you did something that now, in hindsight, you wish
you didn't. You're probably aware of many better ways
to deal with the situation rather than falling back on the negative
behaviour that you actually did. But this is okay, because now
you know the difference. It's a huge step to realise that you learned
a lesson and that inside you really do feel regret or sorrow. This is
the point of guilt - to take you to a place where you feel sorrow and
then let it go.
We are never meant to hold onto guilt forever as it's a debilitating
condition. It's an emotion to take us to the place where the lesson is
yet it's never
We get to guilt, we think further upon what would be a better action,
then as we learn, we let go of the guilt and we forgive ourself. We
make sure we would never repeat the same situation. The only reason
guilt hangs around is if we are not prepared to stop the behaviour. If
you keep repeating bahaviour that causes guilt, you become a victim to
it and are not learning the lesson.
What Happens When Guilt Stays With Us
Normally, we let go of our guilt as we learn a
better way of dealing with the situation. We may feel guilty that we
yelled at someone for something they said, or maybe we ignored them or
took it out on them. Yet now that we've thought it over, we realise we
feel bad for a reason
, so we search inside to find a better way of
dealing with it the next time. Once we come up with an option, a better
behaviour that would
not make us feel guilty, we can let the guilt go once and for all. The
next time we're in a similar situation we'll know what to do and
our behaviour has improved. But what happens when we can't let go of
In this case, something has prevented us from learning a lesson, or we
may have decided to punish ourself. We can be quite
harsh on ourself in dealing out punishment, yet we all deserve to be
free of guilt.
Why are you punishing yourself or not forgiving yourself? Remember once
you have felt the guilt for an appropriate time you are free to release
it again and set yourself free.
How hurt was the other party in this
situation? Only if you hurt someone especially deeply, for example you
cheated on a partner, does guilt stay with us for a prolonged time. Some
people keep cheating if they can stand living constantly with the
guilt, or they learn to ignore it. At some point the guilt will come home and the
cheating becomes real. In such cases, guilt may be appropriate to feel
for years if the other person was hurt badly or the relationship ended.
What if we've done something we feel is quite unforgivable? What if
we hit another in anger, stole, spread mean gossip or did other actions
that hurt another and now we feel terrible about it. In many ways, we
need to feel terrible and let that feeling work through us. Such
negative feelings have a reason to exist and often bounce back as part
. We made someone
suffer and now we find ourself
suffering as a consequence. That's the karmic kickback; we have to
deal with what we put out there.
In such cases, time tends to take care of it eventually. Sometimes a person
can secretly feel guilty for years if they did something wrong they
feel very deeply about. Our feelings change over time, so whilst you
thought you had good reason to do what you did, over time things come
back to haunt us as we get a higher view of it. We have to live with
we did. We may not need to disclose our actions but of course we know
what it was, and we regret it.
If you feel this way, congratulate
yourself for coming to this big realisation. Now that you truly do
regret it, you are fairly sure never to repeat this action and you have
grown. This is pretty fantastic. So whilst you still feel guilty, the
guilt will lessen just a bit each day and meanwhile, you are a better
person now. Acknowledge it and know it. It's a big step.
I love the topic of forgiveness because it shows we live in
universe. God IS
Jesus explains to us, we just need to forgive ourself most of the time
and that can be the most difficult part. How do we forgive ourself?
We need to acknowledge we are "human" and to be human is to err
upstanding people have moments they regret, moments of making
monumental errors. We pick ourself up, forgive ourself and get on with
it, vowing to never repeat such a deed again. It isn't the end of the
world unless we get trapped in guilt then blame ourself endlessly. We
are never meant to do this. Moving out of your guilt quickly is a good
way to be an even better person. You can determine how long you punish
yourself for, so you can determine how much pain you need to feel.
to melt away the pain, from others and from yourself. You deserve to be
Constant, Underlying Guilt From Childhood
Sometimes from the way we are raised, we make a habit of
carrying an underlying guilt with us from childhood. This is merely belief - you
either believe you are guilty or you drop the burden and realise you
are free. Pick a day that is a new day fresh from mistakes and a day
you can be better and do better. You can drop the burden of guilt that
has hung around merely from others who tried to put the guilt on you.
Any 'family' guilt coming from the belief of someone else in the family
need not reflect your own opinions. People may try to put the guilt on
us, however we don't need to carry that. That is rather their
burden to carry if that's
what they want to do. Let go of guilt from the past, even if things
were difficult back then, and know you do not have to carry that with
you anymore. Set yourself free and stay positive.
Feeling guilt is a good sign that you are a good
person underneath. All you need to do is live
right and keep to all the positive things you believe in.
5 Ways To Let Go Of Guilt
To summarize, here are the 5 ways we've discussed to let go of
guilt that's no longer needed in our life:
1. Understand that earth is like a
and we come here to learn. We are not supposed to be perfected beings,
we are supposed to make mistakes. Make allowance for even bad things
you may have done; its okay.
2. Guilt is supposed to be temporary
and it has a reason, to help us to change. The universe wants us to
grow into stronger people. Understanding why you feel guilty will allow
you to let it go faster and grow from it.
3. If our actions are very
it takes longer to get over personal guilt, and perhaps this is right.
Sometimes we have to live with guilt for a bit longer if we, for
example, hurt someone else very badly for no real reason. But, after an
appropriate time has passed, let the guilt go by realising you aren't
supposed to suffer forever. You are supposed to have a life too.
4. Forgiveness is the way home.
You, like anyone else, deserves forgiveness and forgiving yourself is
the greatest healing gift of all. Forgive all of it and decide to do
5. Sometimes we are raised to feel
guilt about everything.
Really think about what you have done wrong. Was it really bad enough
to punish yourself with constantly? Learn to get over constant
guilty feelings and realise you are not responsible for every little
thing. Free yourself once and for all and now you can life as you
should, as a guilt-free person.
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