Guilt What Is It?

Guilt can be debilitating. It often brings productive thoughts and actions to a standstill.

Use these tips to overcome guilt.

IDENTIFY THE REAL PROBLEM

Take a close look at why you feel guilty. Guilt is a condition, not a feeling. Using guilt as a feeling masks deeper emotions and the identity of a problem. Identify your real feelings. For instance, ask yourself: “Are you experiencing guilt because you haven’t spent enough time with your children?” After you identify the problem that is causing the guilt, then work toward resolving it.

DETERMINE WHOSE STANDARDS YOU’RE TRYING TO LIVE UP TO

Maybe it’s your mother’s or your coworkers’ standards you’re trying to meet. Do you feel guilty because your house is not clean enough? Because you yelled at your children this morning? Because you had to work late and the laundry is not done? All you can do is your best and that will have to be good enough.

LEARN TO LET GO

Remember that social blunder you made a month ago? Stop beating yourself up about it. It’s over and you’re probably the only one who remembers it.

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

Set small, attainable goals that lead to larger, more far-reaching goals. Take one project on at a time to avoid feeling overwhelmed and guilty because you missed something important. Don’t strive for perfection.

BRIGHTEN YOUR OUTLOOK

Try not to take yourself too seriously. Learn to laugh at yourself, it’s easier to blow off steam if you can. Smile for yourself and for the people around you.

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