Making mistakes in life will sometimes be very hard to deal with. It makes sense that there would be consequences for certain mistakes, but some people have a hard time moving on no matter what. You might feel an extreme sense of guilt due to certain mistakes that you’ve made in your life. For instance, you might feel very guilty about cheating on a partner or breaking certain laws.
Feeling remorse about things that you’ve done in life that are wrong isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, it’s not good if those feelings of guilt are holding you back from moving forward in life. How can you overcome feelings of guilt? Read on to get more information so that you can figure out how to start making progress.
Allow Yourself to Address the Guilt
Allowing yourself to address the feelings of guilt will actually be healthier than trying to ignore your feelings. You might feel guilty about anything that you did that you know to be wrong. Some might feel guilty about cheating on a test at school while others will feel guilty about breaking promises to important loved ones. You should acknowledge your guilt so that you can figure out how to make up for it.
At first, you might feel frustrated with yourself and this might turn into anger. Eventually, you might be able to figure out why you chose to do what you did. During this part of the process, many people have benefited from keeping journals. You can write about your feelings to try to put things into perspective.
Understanding why you did something can help you to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. Did you cheat because you were afraid of failure? What emotions lead you to break a promise to a loved one? Explore these thoughts and you might be able to learn a lot about yourself and your mindset.
Knowing why you did something doesn’t excuse your actions. Sometimes it’s necessary to receive punishment when you’ve done things that are wrong. If you broke the law, then you might need to pay for your crimes if you did something severe. Likewise, if you hurt someone close to you, then it might take time for you to be able to be forgiven.
Apologize and Try to Atone
Apologizing and trying to atone will be the next step of the process. Often, people feel guilty when their actions hurt someone else. If you did something that caused someone else pain, then you should try to apologize to show that you’re truly sorry about what you’ve done. The wronged party might not always be quick to forgive you, but you’ll need to understand this and try to atone anyway.
Sometimes your actions will lead to relationships ending. If your guilt is related to cheating on a partner, then your partner might choose to leave you. This can be tough to accept, but you will need to apologize and try to move on. The important thing is to understand what you did was wrong so that you can try to be a better person in the future.
Learn From Your Mistakes
Learning from your mistakes is the most constructive thing that you can do when you’re dealing with excessive guilt. Yes, you likely wish that you hadn’t done whatever it is that you’re feeling guilty about. You can’t go back and change what you’ve done, but you can try to move forward and live your life as best you can. Even some people who are responsible for taking lives have tried to learn from their mistakes so that they can help others not to walk the same path.
For example, there are people who have spoken to others about the dangers of drunk driving and other important issues. If your guilt stems from something less severe, then you can still learn a lot from your mistakes and try to be a better person. Cheating on a partner is wrong, but it’s possible to try to learn and vow never to hurt someone else by cheating again. If you have good intentions, then you can work on yourself and move forward instead of staying stuck in the past.
Try to Forgive Yourself
After you’ve put in the effort to learn from your mistakes, it’s going to be time to try to forgive yourself. No one is perfect and just about everyone has done things that they feel guilty about. If you’re doing your best to better yourself, then you should eventually be able to forgive yourself. You might still feel guilty sometimes if you hurt someone that you love, but knowing that you’ve changed can help to blunt the blow.
Practice positive self-talk if you’re having issues with negative thoughts. Try to focus on the positive things that you’ve done with your life instead of focusing on the negative issues from your past. You can’t change your past, but you can try to put the focus on the present. If you’re able to learn to do this properly, then you will have a much easier time overcoming or managing feelings of guilt.
Therapy Can Make a Difference
Going to therapy could be a very good way to help yourself feel better. When you’re struggling with extreme feelings of guilt, it might be necessary to talk to someone about what you’re going through. You can talk to a professional online therapist at BetterHelp to put things into perspective. Online therapy allows you to get help from the comfort of home.
You’ll be able to go over what happened in your life and you can talk through the situation with your therapist. If you’re having a bad day, then you’ll always be able to reach out to get help. You’ll never have to try to face these feelings of guilt alone when you have someone to help guide you down the path of healing. Feeling better won’t always be simple, but you can learn to deal with your feelings in a positive fashion with the help of someone who cares.