7 Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Techniques to Deal with Guilt

When you experience guilt, it means that your conscience is working. It’s a sign that you care about others and recognize when your actions fall short of your standards. However, feeling guilty all the time can be exhausting and even paralyzing if left unaddressed. Luckily, cognitive behavioral therapy techniques can help put things into perspective so that you are no longer held back by guilt but rather empowered to grow as a person.

Recognize Your Guilt Triggers

What are the situations, people, and memories that cause you to feel guilty? Once you know where the feelings are coming from, you can address them and hopefully overcome your guilt. In order to do this, you need to pay attention to your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors when you experience guilt. It can be helpful to keep a journal so that you can have a record of your feelings and observations. Alternatively, you could try a guided meditation that focuses on bringing awareness to your thoughts and feelings. Sometimes the best way to identify your guilt triggers is to simply be still and observant.

Be Kind To Yourself

You need to be kind to yourself and recognize that everyone makes mistakes. You need to recognize that you have a right to make mistakes, too. You need to recognize that you are not a perfect person, but that you are perfectly imperfect.

Develop a New Behavior

You need to think of a past mistake that is causing you to feel guilty. Then, you need to think of a new behavior that is a direct response to that mistake. For example, if you accidentally made a rude comment to a co-worker, you could make a point to publicly apologize at the next company meeting. If you’re struggling with persistent guilt and it’s not letting up, you need to take a mindfulness break. Mindfulness is an important part of CBT, and it can be helpful not only for managing guilt but also for calming anxiety and other emotions. When you feel guilty, it means that you’re letting your past mistakes overshadow your present and future potential. However, mindfulness allows you to take a step back from your thoughts and feelings so that you can see them for what they are and make a change if necessary. 

Change the Way You Think About the Past

If guilt stems from regret over the past, you need to change the way you think about it. To overcome your guilt, you need to accept that the past is the past and that you can’t change it. You need to recognize that you were the person you were at that time, and that you are a new person now. You don’t have to let past mistakes keep you from living a happy life. You don’t have to let guilt control you. You can let go of the past and move forward.

Talk to Someone You Trust

If all else fails, you may have to talk to someone you trust about your guilt. This could be a family member, a friend, or your therapist. You might feel like you don’t deserve their help, but you do. You deserve to let go of your guilt and move forward with your life. If you’re struggling with persistent guilt, reach out to someone you trust. They can help you to recognize your guilt triggers and find ways to overcome your guilt so that you can live a happier, more fulfilling life. 

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether that means talking to a therapist about the guilt you’re feeling or reaching out to a friend or family member for support, it’s important to acknowledge that you have limitations.If you have no one to turn to and no opportunity or energy to look for a psychologist, then pay attention to apps with useful content for therapy at home. 

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