Posted by: C J | August 10, 2012

Is the Power of Guilt RuiningYour Life???

The verdict is in

   Today, (8. 10. 12) on Iyanla Vanzant’s FaceBook wall she posted that guilt is a wasted emotion. I first heard her discuss this on Oprah’s Life Class on Sunday, July 29th, where the topic was guilt. Oprah and Iyanla both agree that guilt is a wasted emotion. Well, I disagree with their current belief. I believe guilt is an unwrapped gift filled with opportunities, lessons, and guidelines. Guilt can help you live up to your principles. Guilt is only wasted if you wallow in it and allow it to keep you stuck in an unhealthy state.

Here is a page from my personal journal. 7. 30. 12 pm

Last night on LIFE CLASS – Oprah and Iyanla both said that guilt is a wasted emotion. I disagree – guilt expresses our conscience – our knowledge of right and wrong – It can be a red flashing light – a warning – a wakeup call – an opportunity to seek a do-over or U-turn in life.

The power of guilt allows me to take a look at who I am, where I’ve been, and where I’m going. It allows me to be accountable to walk in my truth and integrity. (end of entry)

The fact is guilt is can be a wasted emotion and the truth is there is power in that emotion if it is allowed to play out. As I use Iyanla’s fact vs. truth…  Guilt reminds us to do better next time or don’t do that again, and shows I have a meter (conscience).

What is guilt? What is guilty? For me — guilt is an internal admission of doing something that doesn’t match with your beliefs or training; it is a remorseful awareness of having done or said something wrong/ inappropriate. You confess your guilt, whereas guilty has a more external judgment or connotation; someone else has pronounced a verdict of guilty on to you or they agree with your admission of guilt. Think of Judge Judy and all her guilty verdicts and her attitude when she hands down her decision.

“Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own actions or lack of action. If it leads to change then it can be useful, since it is then no longer guilt but the beginning of knowledge. Yet all too often, guilt is just another name for impotence, for defensiveness destructive of communication; it becomes a device to protect ignorance and the continuation of things the way they are, the ultimate protection for changelessness.”
― Audre Lorde

I will admit that guilt is a useful tool for those who don’t want to deal with the deeper meaning of an experience or event that caused their remorse. Have you been around the person that seems to get something out of discussing her tear-laden guilt? Her intent is usually so that those who hear her often come back with – ‘it’s okay, don’t worry about it, we all make mistakes” – which gives her absolution again and she feels better for the moment.   “Whew, my tears worked again to get me off the hook”.   In reality she is hiding what’s at the bottom of the iceberg of guilt and resisting what could be her deliverance.

The guilt some people experience can be an iceberg that hides the deeper feelings of: resentment, anger, selfishness, fear, shame, and self- loathing. WE all have made mistakes and have felt that guilt – but to not to get stuck in the muck of it all is the key to moving on. As long as you don’t allow guilt to be like smoke in the eyes and keep you blinded and confused you can use it as a tool to do and be better…

“When he says we’re forgiven, let’s unload the guilt. When he says we’re valuable, let’s believe him. . . . When he says we’re provided for, let’s stop worrying. God’s efforts are strongest when our efforts are useless.” Max Lucado

Tell me your story: When have you felt so guilty it stifles you?

  • What are you fighting for by hanging on to your guilt?
  • Is there a reality or an illusion that got twisted somewhere along the way?
  • Does it help you with remorse?
  • Does it feel better with it than it does without it?
  • Is its hold on you still useful to you? Make your amends if possible and let the Universe handle the rest.

Let’s pretend that I have a magic wand that lets you off the hook for your guilt-violations. — Would you be willing to use it? —  Would you be willing to let go of your guilt? —  If yes – here you go — allow a deep cleansing breath in and out AHHH— now just open the door and let it go. Allow fresh energy to flow through you, release the judgments, and say yes to the circle of life. You have served your time!

“When you know better you do better.” (M. Angelou)

  Please leave your reply or comment  below…

                    Come back soon for another cup of comfort!

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