How should we deal with our guilt?
On the positive and negative ways of dealing with guilt
We should deal with our guilt the way we feel we should.
Believing there is a right way and a wrong way to deal with something often complicates the emotion. Societal norms and pressures are not always dictating what was right for the person.
That being said, there are healthy and unhealthy ways to deal with emotions.
- exploring why we feel guilty
- expressing our feelings associated with the guilt in our own personal way- art, poetry, journaling, having more alone time, seeking more social support, etc.
- determining if we are feeling guilty irrationally- did we actually do something wrong? Is something truly our fault? Are we taking the blame for something that is not actually in our control such as the death of a loved one we have not visited in awhile?
- accepting and confronting our guilt and other related feelings
- discussing our feelings with others and seeking social support
- if we truly wronged someone in some way, apologizing and attempting to make things right in some way.
- avoiding the feeling altogether
- punishing ourselves due to our guilt
- believing we are unworthy of positive things in our lives in response to our guilt
- displacing our guilt onto someone else- using a scapegoat
- accepting blame for something we did not actually do or cause
- becoming angry or resentful of someone we may have wronged in some way
The answer lies within your question. You are the only one that can deal with the guilt and in most cases I've found is if you don't know how to deal with it, then don't. Guilt is usually useless- something we put on to ourselves. I'm a mother and I don't think there is one type of person to experience more guilt than a mom. We feel it every time we're away from our babies...for any reason...or if we do something for ourselves instead. I think women in general put a lot of guilt on themselves
So...for me, I forget it. I don't deal with it. I realize it's usually me making myself miserable with guilt for no reason.. Forget it, don't deal with it.
I handle my guilt with prayer, asking God's forgiveness. The Bible says "If we confess our sins, he is able and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9) That is a statement, a promise, and God keeps his promises.
I would add that it also depends on why or what you feel guilty about. If you are positive you did something wrong, then your guilt is valid and you can deal with it by praying as above, stopping the behavior, making amends, and move on.
Sometimes though we can feel guilty for something that isn't our responsibility to feel guilty about. Let's say you have a teenager who is making bad choices and getting into lots of trouble. It's so easy for a parent to feel guilty because they think it's happening because of something they did wrong. The fact is, the teenager has made choices. Whether you have done well in parenting, or made lots of mistakes, it still doesn't mean you are responsible for the teens actions. He knows right from wrong and can choose to go a whole other direction. That's just one example. God bless.
I think the best way to deal with guilt is to share it with someone we know would understand us. But we too have to be ready and strong enough to face it.
We must keep our ego aside for a while and learn to see it on face.
And as it's said, "I've done good but I'm no God, I've committed sins but I'm no devil".
So it's not that hard once we realise we are only human after all.
Faith, responsibility, love and humility.
Ego is what hurts from guilt, but ego is the source of all evil. Humility is the antidote to ego. Let the fire of truth burn away the ego. Have faith in God that He will take care of you.
The true self (Holy Ghost within) is invulnerable. View guilt from that viewpoint and let ego disappear. After all, our Lord said that we must die in order to gain everlasting life. The "self" which must die is ego.
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