What is guilt and how can its effects be alleviated?

What is guilt and how can its effects be alleviated?

Many of us were raised under this punishing emotional belief system , being conditioned from a very young age to feel emotionally bad under certain conditions.

What is guilt and how do we get it?

When someone gives us a message in order to make us feel “bad people” for having done or said something “inappropriate”, we respond immediately with a feeling of discomfort and punishment.

This is mainly because our mind responds automatically according to what it learned during childhood .

Some of the psychological systems of guilt we employ in our lives are as follows.

1. Residual guilt

Residual guilt is the guilt learned during our childhood , since parents often use it on a daily basis to manipulate us with reproaches like: “I won’t love you if you do that again” or “You should be ashamed of that attitude”. These phrases can echo in our adult self in figures such as bosses or parental images, it can also be evidenced in our couple relationships, where reproaches from the past come to light. This feeling of guilt is reflected in our persistent attempt to gain approval for these figures.

2. Self-imposed guilt

Self-imposed guilt is not necessarily connected to our childhood . Here people feel immobilized by issues experienced during adulthood, self-imposed guilt caused by not following the “adult behavior” or the “adult moral code”. The person may have a bad mood for a long time, even though the pain of guilt can do nothing to change the situation. These are reflected in our discussions with someone, or by engaging in behavior contrary to that of others.

Examining the concern

Let’s remember that worry is a feeling that immobilizes you in the present for something that has not yet happened and as its word pre (before) occupation, means before some occupation, so we should focus our attitude on dealing with adversities before worrying. It is important not to mistake making plans with falling into thoughts of fear and anxiety.

Again, it all starts with the misconception that concern is closely related to love and importance to others, this can be evidenced in phrases like: “I worry because I love you” or “You should worry about your future”. But worry has no relation to love and importance, since this emotion only causes anxiety and suffering in our lives.

Releasing our negative emotions

To leave behind negative emotions such as guilt and worry, we must commit ourselves to living our present moment. Learning to live in the now helps us not to waste our moments with neurotic thoughts and to be able to see life in a more constructive and rational way.

Now that you have a greater understanding of the psychological system behind these negative emotions, you will be able to work better with your emotions for a less manipulative personal development and more committed to your own happiness.

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