Some people have too much guilt and others can feel very little guilt at all. I want for a minute to distinguish between the experiences of shame and guilt. Guilt is a feeling of responsibility related to some action we have committed. It could also be related to an inaction. Shame on the other hand is a feeling like humiliation. It may be related to an awareness of something dishonorable and is connected with how we appear to ourselves or others. Guilt may be a positive emotion if it moves in the direction of solving a problem or atoning for our actions. Too often, however, we become "stuck in guilt". In this case there is no action to bring about a resolution or solution related to the emotion. It can become an internal mantra that we repeat over and over each day, that has an extremely negative impact on our mood and sense of well being. I have realized recently that I tend to use this mantra too frequently, and want to break this bad habit. How can we release ourselves from repeating this unhealthy mantra. One thing we can do is to atone for our action. Some other possibilities are to explore the emotion itself. This would be like befriending, understanding, and listening to this emotion like we might do with any other emotion or a good friend. Just another crazy notion.
Freeing Ourselves From Guilt
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