Guilt, I believe, is one of the most destructive feelings a person can experience. I don’t know if I’ve experienced more guilt than the average person but I do distinctly remember my grandmother telling me “to put your guilt in your pocket.” I can’t recall the events that led up to my grandmother departing those words of wisdom but I know I did not have a clue what she meant.
Several years ago, I gave up guilt for Lent. I’m not Catholic, nor very religious (more spiritual than anything) but my gal pal is so once in a while I play along with certain traditions. In those few weeks, I gave myself permission to be guilt-free. I did things that I believed to be in my best interest or just because that’s what I wanted. What a relief!
I learned how to identify people manipulating me, trying to make me feel guilty. Working me like a puppet to get me to do what they wanted simply by guilting (Is that a word?) me. No more my friends. Now, when ever that feeling starts to creep into my consciousness I tell myself “to put your guilt in your pocket.” Then, I smile and thank my grandmother.