Guilt and shame are two of the most common negative emotions out there in the world.
Everybody has made mistakes, done things they aren’t proud of, and hurt of people, but dwelling on these negative thoughts and feelings will only hold us back and prevent us from ever becoming better people.
I am not encouraging people to feel no remorse for the things they have done wrong, and I know I have done bad things before in my own life: I have lied, cheated, and even stolen a few thing in my life, but I do want to encourage you to learn to forgive yourself for your past, and use that negative energy to drive you to become a better person today.
How guilt and shame ruin lives.
Guilt and shame can hang over you like a dark cloud in the sky, they make you feel inadequate, and they make you feel like you don’t deserve to find happiness or forgiveness. Some of us will hold onto guilt for years about things that may or may not have even been or fault to begin with.
We should all learn to accept when we have made mistakes and own up to the wrongs we have done, but we should do so without allowing it to completely take us over. Guilt and shame are like anchors tying us to our past, and the more wrong you have done, the harder it can be to let it all go, but the more you reflect on and dwell upon your past actions, the more likely you are to repeat them again.
Guilt and shame keep you trapped in the past, and you will continue to relive the horrible things you have done over and over. Guilt and shame make you the victim to your actions and they give away your power to evolve and avoid repeating the same mistakes again.
As you sit and feel guilt and shame for what you did, you unknowingly create an identity of helplessness. You can not change your past, but at any moment you can change who you are today and create a different future.
You must learn the distinguish the difference between accepting that you did as wrong and repeating it again, and vowing to make a change.
How to let go of guilt and shame and make a better tomorrow.
If you truly want to make a difference in the world, and if you truly want to be able to forgive yourself for your past, then you must commit to making a brighter future. The only way that you can escape the demons of your past is to create angels today that will protect you tomorrow.
Take a hard look at what you did in the past, accept it, and vow to never make the same mistakes again.
Next, if you hurt someone, try to find some way to help them. If the person won’t have anything to do with you, try to do something for them anonymously.
Finally, devote yourself to becoming a better person so that you will never repeat the same mistake over again.
If you stay stuck in your past ,you will always be that same terrible person, you will repeat your mistakes over and over again in a cycle of guilt, shame, and regret. You must be willing to say to yourself that the person who made those decisions in the past is no more, and everything begins over new today.
Check out a great video about Jesse Pinkman from Breaking Bad. I loved this show, because it really showed a raw side of human beings that few shows can tap into. Jesse turned from a punk kid into a drug kingpin. He killed people, hurt people, helped the girl that he loved break her drug recovery and OD, and he was responsible for the pain and suffering of countless people throughout the show.
From time to time, he would have moments of redemption where he would decide to change and be a better person, but he always kept coming back to those same feelings of guilt and shame (and with good reason, he did a lot of really bad things).
Because he couldn’t let go of what he had done, he was never able to become someone different. He felt that his past defined him as some evil monster permanently and so he was never able to move on and become something better.
So many of us do the same thing each day.
We must realize that the only way to heal the past and right the wrongs we have done in the past is to live better today and create a better future. You deserve it, no matter what you have done wrong, every day is a new day to start again.
What do you think? Do you have something you have been holding onto for too long? Leave a comment below and join the conversation.