A few things about guilt and how to change it.
Guilt is often caused by something we think we did or didn’t do. We think we should have acted differently in the scenario.
An example would be that you said something to someone and they felt hurt by what you said. You feel guilty about it and stew in your guilt, often avoiding the person or feeling awkward in their presence. Maybe both of you will treat each other differently now. What can you do about it?
Feeling guilty is an emotion that may be calling you to do something. You may have gone against your own value system and you have an opportunity to rectify things. Can you make amends? Can you apologise? The way to deal with guilt is to give yourself some time to feel guilty about the particular situation …. say 15 minutes. Then forgive yourself and make amends or choose do things differently next time.
If we hold onto guilt we may start punishing ourselves without realising it. We can even become ashamed which means we start to point fingers at ourselves (as a person instead of just the action that was done). We berate ourselves and put ourselves down.
Did you do as much wrong as you think you did? Was there something more you could have done if the situation had been different? Maybe you are being very hard on yourself, harder than you think.
1) Forgive yourself
2) Realise you are human
3) If there is something you can do to make amends, do it.
4) If you think there is nothing you can do to make amends you may be mistaken because even if the person is no longer around, you can do a good deed in their name.
5) Remember all the things you do right.
6) Talk to someone who can help if you are not managing to sort through this.
Being the best version of yourself takes a lifetime, don’t expect perfection. Doing your best to grow is how you will get there.