If you are a good person, you don’t lose people, people lose you.
Feeling guilty about not feeling guilty? Life’s pain, setting boundaries, and healthy relationships- sound like a minefield, eh? Remember, your self-talk matters, and being a people pleaser isn’t always good for you!
Setting up boundaries is a healthy and necessary aspect of any relationship, whether it be personal or professional. It is essential for individuals to prioritize their own emotional and mental well-being, and setting boundaries is a way to achieve this. It allows individuals to communicate their needs and limits and helps prevent feelings of resentment or burnout.
It is not selfish to prioritize one’s needs and boundaries, which can lead to healthier and more fulfilling relationships and work environments. Therefore, feeling guilty for setting up boundaries is unnecessary and counterproductive. When our “fight or flight” response is in charge, humility, compassion, forgiveness and the vision of a beloved community do not stand a chance. Learning how to hold life’s tensions in the responsive heart instead of the reactive primitive brain is key to personal, social and cultural creativity. Can suffering become life-giving rather than death-dealing?
Turn your regrets into feedback. Tune in to the latest episode on the Really Personal Podcast as we tackle these issues head-on. Guilt is a heavy emotion and the only way through it is to walk through it.
Here are some ways to stop feeling guilty:
#1: Acknowledge your feelings: Recognize that you are feeling guilty and try to understand why.
The first step is to try to understand why you’re feeling guilty: was it something you did or something you didn’t do? Was it a decision that you made? Typically we can come up with some reasonings as to why we made those decisions. And then we have to embrace those decisions- you made them. You can’t go back in time, you can only own them.
#2: Apologize: If you have wronged someone, apologize and make amends.
Who we are is not determined by a moment in time. Meaning, it’s not determined by a mistake we made. Rather it is what we consistently do. For instance, if you worked out one time, you certainly would not be a bodybuilder. If you have to apologize for something then do it, and then let it go. Stop allowing your mistake to determine your value, your worth, or who you are as a person because it is what you do consistently. And now that you’re operating from a new space, it may be necessary for you to apologize to the people who you may have harmed in the past. Forgive yourself as well.
#3: Learn from your mistakes: Use your guilt as a learning experience to avoid making the same mistake in the future.
Trust that the past version of yourself was doing its best. It’s fair to say that it’s difficult if you feel guilty about the past. You can’t change anything, but you can learn from it. Be compassionate with yourself as you navigate through heavy emotions and feelings revolving around past mistakes or decisions. Acknowledge the fact of who you were back then when you made those decisions is not who you are today. All of your past decisions were made using the knowledge that you had at that time. When you grow up and learn more, you look back on the decisions and you think to yourself, “Why did I do that?” However, when you know better, you do better. So reflect on what you have learned and how you have grown from that situation.
#4: Forgive yourself: Remember that everyone makes mistakes and it’s okay to forgive yourself.
Give yourself some compassion. People think if you give up your guilt then you’re going to become a psychopath, but that’s far from the truth. Forgiveness is key- forgive yourself, and have self-compassion. Remember, you’re just a human being.
#5: Seek support: Talk to a trusted friend or therapist to help you cope with your guilt.
The data is striking on being part of a community. Being part of a community yields a healthier life. There is a deep need for all of us to have meaning and purpose. Our community is there when we need them the most, and this is on both ends of the spectrum- when we are at a high in life they lift us up, and when we are at our lowest, they bring us back to our neutral. Your community is going to help you find success. It’s imperative to surround yourself with people who fuel you, inspire you, motivate you, and help you be your very best. You are never abandoned.