If you’re feeling guilty about money, first you’ll want to get clear on what guilt really is. See, there’s a BIG difference between Real Guilt & Fake Guilt.
With Real Guilt you have acted in a way that makes you feel remorse against broad, universal standards. You did something that morally or ethically wrong according to society.
You stole, you lied, you were intentionally deceitful etc.
This is a healthy form of guilt that keeps us all “in check” in society, so to speak.
But most of what we experience in life, (since we’re all good people here), is Fake Guilt.
Fake Guilt means you feel remorseful about an action based on someone else’s opinion of that action. False guilt occurs when you feel confused about what’s “right or wrong” and you’re judging your actions based on the value systems of others.
Values that you have not necessarily AUTHENTIC to who you are. Values that you don’t necessarily agree with. In fact, you may use guilt” as a way to mask a very different emotion — your Anger at feeling compelled to follow these rules we had no say in creating in the first place.
Typically your parents or authority figures program us with these values and we feel unnecessarily “wrong” when we break these rules.
For example: Your mother thought spending was “wrong” and now when you spend you get this guilty feeling. But you don’t know where it’s coming from and you figure it’s just that you’re “wrong.”
How to Overcome Guilt:
- Make a list of all the things you’ve done that you feel guilty about.
- Go through the list and put a “R” next to things that are Real Guilt and an “F” next to things that are Fake Guilt.
- For the “R’s” begin to make amends today. Write apology letters to those that you’ve hurt and ask forgiveness. (You don’t even have to send the letter.)
- For the “F’s” write down who passed down the belief that makes your action “wrong” and write down when it first appeared. Then recognize it for what it is: just one person’s opinion. (Even if it’s an important person in your, it’s still ONE person’s opinion.)
- Cross each item off the list. This guilt is NOT your own. Let it go!
Try this out whenever you are feeling guilty about money. It may not be your guilt to carry! If so, let it go!
Let me know how it goes! Would love to hear from you in the comments…