Guilty Conscience Meaning

Think about someone dropping $100 out of their wallet while going down the street. What is a stranger behind them supposed to do? Should they promptly hand it back to them or secretly tuck it away in their pocket?

Humans constantly strive to improve upon who they were yesterday. Awareness is not the only area of the brain that is impacted when guilt sets in. One’s essential memories, thoughts, and morals are stored in the subconscious mind. When shame or guilt are the dominant feelings, one’s morals serve as the driving force behind their behavior. Making decisions based on morals from the subconscious mind as a supplementary guiding system leads one to believe that their choice is the “better” one.

What is Guilt?

Guilt is having unfair and unjust feelings about yourself and being distressed about your potential role in a bad event. Guilt is a self-conscious emotion that, comes from a process of self-evaluation and contemplation and may entail how you feel others think about you. There are two primary forms of guilt:

  • Altruistic: guilt that arises after causing harm to someone
  • Deontological: guilt that is caused by breaking personal values or morals

What is Conscience?

Conscience is the part of your personality that will help you determine between right and wrong and will guide you to behave in a way that will not lead to something bad. Once you are able to figure this out, you will have the strength to control and evaluate your behavior. One who will

Guilty Conscience Meaning

A sense of remorse that someone has when they know they did something wrong. A guilty conscience is one of the most frequent negative or depressing sensations that people encounter almost every day. A guilty conscience may ruin a relationship, and take your joy, your happiness, and even your future if it is not properly dealt with. To keep a steady emotional and psychological balance, feeling guilty about our bad behaviors is important. This feeling is also like a snooze clock that won’t stop ringing in your head until it is addressed, and it is very necessary to deal with it healthily.

Signs Of A Guilty Conscience

Constantly Justifying

If your partner is constantly giving excuses or trying to hide something by delaying the answers, it means something is wrong. It can also show that maybe your partner is hiding something. The most important reason for such behavior is that they might feel sharing what they know can create major disagreements or that the other person might not agree with them. Therefore, their arguments and excuses will be strong and convincing about the choices they make.

Avoidant

Anyone guilty will try their best to stay away from you and spend more time by themselves. Anything that might trigger their guilty conscience can lead to further complications. Someone who declines to talk to others or ignores spending family and friends, clearly indicates that they don’t want to think about it or experience the discomfort that comes with a guilty conscience. This ignorant behavior should be taken care of rather than neglected.

Highly emotional

Someone guilty is more likely to engage in emotionally intense conversations with you. Anyone going through guilty conscience might also be quick to react to questions or any sort of interrogation.

Anxiety

Anxiety is often the result of fear. When a person makes a mistake or does something wrong, they will eventually feel anxious about it. They will either feel frustrated or scared of getting caught. Anxiety comes before a person starts to avoid everyone and everything around them. It almost becomes impossible for the guilty to think straight anymore since the situation grows so large in their minds. Mentally they already do feel guilty, and if this is not addressed at the appropriate time, it may result in dangerous mental health issues.

How to help with a guilty conscience

Apologizing is the key

Forgiving others and asking for forgiveness if done something wrong is so important. Forgiving others will help you release the burden of feeling sad and upset but asking for forgiveness is equally important to stay in clear conscience. The feeling of letting go can do wonders as carrying burdens will just make you feel worse.

Learn from your past

Everything cannot be fixed always. Some mistakes might cause you serious harm and might cost you a relationship or a close friend too. You must acknowledge the past before you so that you can move over it. Remembering the past and dwelling on your behavior doesn’t make the situation better. Even while you can’t change the course of events by running through alternative scenarios, you can always learn from your mistakes.

Communicate with people you trust

Not everyone finds it easy to communicate or share their feelings with others. It’s not easy, the guilt overrides your head making you feel isolated. Although you may be concerned that people would judge you for what happened, you’ll frequently discover that’s not the case. You can discover that close ones provide a lot of help. Most of the time, the individuals that care about you will show love and compassion, and talking about challenging or unpleasant sentiments frequently ease tension. By exchanging stories, your friends and family might also make you feel less isolated. Most individuals are familiar with what it’s like to feel guilty because almost everyone has done something they regret.

Therapy

Guilt can relate to:

Depression

Trauma

Obtrusive thoughts

Fear will never make it easy to open up about your guilt, however, avoiding such feelings will just make it more overwhelming for you. Over time guilt can create hurdles in relationships and make daily life more stressful. Additionally, it may contribute to issues with mental health and problems falling asleep. Professional support may be useful when you are deviating from the normal things of your life, or for feelings that are keeping you away from the daily chores. A therapist or other mental health expert can be helpful. They can provide direction by assisting you in locating and addressing the sources of guilt, looking into practical coping mechanisms, and increasing your level of self-compassion.