Guilt seems to be a theme this week. In individual therapy sessions, group therapy and the collective.
Guilt to do more.
Guilt to say something.
Guilt of the past.
Guilt of privileged.
Guilt from parents.
Guilt from partners.
Guilt from tuning out.
Guilt for just about anything.
Guilt weighs you down. Keeps you stuck. Keeps you in service to others. Guilt can be a never ending cycle of trying to make amends, while slowly increasing your burden.
Louis Hay says,”Guilt seeks punishment, so we can literally become our own judge, jury and executioner-condemning ourselves to a self imposed prison. We punish ourselves and there is no one around to come to our defense. It’s time to forgive ourselves ans set ourselves free.”
Guilt can be used as a tool. To improve behavior. However, it can be used to manipulate. When feeling guilty, check in with yourself-
Is there something you could have done differently? If yes, what is the lesson? What is guilt trying to teach you? Apply what you learned in the future and let it go. Holding on to guilt does you no good. Thank guilt for the lesson and release it. If no, then know you did your best and again thank it and let it go.
Are you holding yourself to too high of a standard? Who created this standard- you? Someone else? Is it from your childhood? Remind yourself that you are doing the best you can with what you can. And if you feel that you could have done better, beating yourself up will get you no where. See where you could do better and try again. Again, holding onto guilt does you and the world no good. Let guilt teach you not weigh you down.
Were you being manipulated by someone? Did someone want to you do something for them and therefore caused you to feel guilty? If yes, then let it go. It’s not yours to hold on to. If no, why are you feeling guilty? Take the lesson from guilt and let it go.
I hope this helps you as you navigate through our days, weeks and years. Life is tough. Full of ups and downs. Even if you don’t feel it, you are doing the best you can with what you have.