Guilt: Does it rule your life?

A Self-Love reflection from Ryan

I’ve always been able to draw laughter out of people in one way or another. BOOGER. I love that.
I’ve never had a fear of speaking in public. I really love that.
I’ve always thought I had particularly nice feet even though they’re really big. I like them too.

I’ve learned to love my ability to work. I didn’t know I had it in me until now.
I’ve come to appreciate my ability to love unconditionally. I didn’t know I could until my children were born.
I’m learning every day to love my body for the miracle it is. I wish I would have seen it sooner.

I’m focused on never telling myself I can’t do something. Every day I work on removing “can’t” from my vocabulary.
I am constantly working toward loving my physical appearance. Every day I see something new.
I want to learn to LIVE every day. Today I am living.

How are you and GUILT?

Does this resonate with you?

  • I NEED to work out cause I ate too much today
  • I can’t believe that you would do that, now you must not eat tomorrow
  • I feel so bad, I can’t believe that you let yourself go
  • You’re NEVER gonna get to your goal weight
  • You’re such a failure

All of those ran through my head. What’s interesting is that the closer I got to my ‘goal’ weight the more the guilt festered in my mind. It was the all consuming force that would drive me into bingeing more, ‘starting over’ tomorrow, and bawling my eyes out as I fell asleep stuffed.

Guilt is the most important thing that I had to let go in my journey in over-coming my negative relationship with food. I believe that guilt is the thing which feeds the abusive cycles that we have with things. Be it food, relationships, exercise, body image, self-esteem, etc. It tells you that you’re not worthy and trying to over-come the level of guilt that I used to throw at myself was insurmountable on most days.

How do you kick this cycle? I can’t tell you how many days I went through this. Sometimes 5-6 times per week. This is what helped me:

  • Let it go:Yep I screwed up and ate to much, but I am not going to fed the guilt’
  • Breathe: Many times in the middle of what could become a binge, I have learned to stop and take 10 deep breathes
  • Personal First Aid Kit
  • Identify your emotions: What is causing this ‘need’ for food/maintenance of a relationship/laziness?
  • Make small mini-goals: Instead of trying for the whole week, for example binge-free, try for one meal. Be totally relastic with only focusing on 1-2 goals per week.
  • Success Journal: write down your daily success. could be something someone said, how you felt, how you listened to your body, walked for 10 minutes, stood up for yourself. No matter how big, or small.

Have you struggled with guilt, and over-came it?
Do you struggle?
How does/Has guilt play(ed) a role in your life?

Have you entered into the ‘Adore xoxo‘ giveaway? Globakery bars and a little handmade something up for grabs!

21 thoughts on “Guilt: Does it rule your life?

  1. MizFit says:

    we jews SPECIALIZE in the guilts 🙂

    Ive never really struggled with it only because I learned, early on, that for me GUILT was an indicator I was doing something which went against my moral compass (or whatever phrase you choose to use).

    It released me.

    If I ever start down the guilt path and what Im focusing on is NOT something which morally goes against my beliefs I know what Im REALLY FEELING isnt guilt.
    something else.
    and then I delve into precisely what that might be.

    (I love ryan/his blog)

  2. Steena says:

    “I NEED to work out cause I ate too much today”
    Yep. This is me. I only allow myself one cheat day, so Sunday mornings I’m at the gym for 2 hours. Sometimes I over-do it, sometimes I leave feeilng like a rockstar. There’s a fine line.

    I know this sounds maybe discouraging, but I never set a goal weight for myself. I just made a goal to get healthy/fit & lose weight (but to no certain number). It’s made the journey less stressful I think. But everyone is different, you need to do what’s right for you.

    But it might be worthwhile to stop focusing on the #’s and really enjoy your fitness.

  3. Marisa (Loser for Life) says:

    Hmmm…I could write a novel in answer to all your questions! But, I won’t bore you with all that.

    I can completely relate to this post and I have decided to release myself of the guilt. It’s a hard thing to do and requires much more “work” than I ever thought to “cancel” those thoughts from even coming into play.

    I like the process you put into place for yourself. You have tools to help you through it. I have to find what works for me. I’ve been playing around with a few things, but I think I need to get a more concrete “intervention process” together!

    Great job, Mish! So proud of you 🙂

  4. Tina says:

    What a fabulous post and I can really relate. I have gone through a few periods in my life where binging and the guilt around it controlled me. Letting go of the guilt is what really helped me get over it, along with making myself eat more on a daily basis to control the urges to binge from undereating. Great post and it’s really commendable that you share about it and all that you learned from it so openly. I am sure it is helping numerous people 🙂

  5. christie @ honoring health says:

    Yes!! I am the queen of guilt though I am much better now. I give myself a lot of guilt about exercise and how I need to improve my habits. I’m working on it though. I just have to keep reinforcing that I am strong and capable and that I am not defined by my food or exercise choices.

  6. eaternotarunner says:

    Love the mini-goals idea. I do that now and find I am much more successful than i used to be when all I could think of was how I failed!

  7. waistingtime says:

    So sadly true! Such a viscous cycle. I haven’t gotten a handle on this yet. Should I tell myself it is okay to skip the gym and not feel guilty? Hmm. But years of yo-yo weights tell me whatever I did before is sure not working for me.

  8. love2eatinpa says:

    loved your list of weighs to kick the guilt!
    i think we wouldn’t be human if we didn’t feel some level of guilt, especially over eating too much. i have recently learned to ‘let go’ and not feel guilty and it’s been wonderfully freeing. and guess what, the next morning(s) 20 lbs didn’t jump onto my tush!

  9. Yum Yucky says:

    I’ve been a guilt struggler most of my life. Forgiveness has been KEY for me. I had to learn to forgive myself. This is a process that took many years. I finally got the hang of it.

    Guilt may still rear it’s head on new issues, but it doesn’t last because I forgive myself and move on. Start fresh. Give myself a do-over.

    (i love that cool Guilt Chart. I’m a chart-lover)

    • Mish says:

      I am such a visual learner…I love charts/tables/graphs etc. I think that forgiveness is such an important thing as well.

  10. missyrayn says:

    Guilt used to completely run my life. But now I praise myself for the little things I do like stopping a binge instead of getting mad that I started to over eat.

    Its all the little things that add up to success not one or a few screw ups.

  11. s. says:

    sometimes i feel guilty for eating way too much, and my thought process is always, well, il’l be good tomorrow! might as well party today!

    …and then wake up to extreme guilt.

    something to work on every day.

    • Mish says:

      I used to be part of that same vicious cycle. I think that the most important thing is that in the morning you put your guilt away and give yourself permissions to start a new day.

  12. challenges2010 says:

    I’d like to think I’ve overcome this vicious circle as I like to call it but am afraid it’s just in remission. I just keep telling myself this is a long process and a slip up here or there is going to happen. So far it’s working but I’m only 40 days into it!

  13. Chloe @ Project Live Well says:

    Amazing amazing amazing post!!!!

    Yes, I’ve most definitely been ruled by guilt in the past. I feel like I have pretty much left that behind now but I still get the odd day when I find myself feeling guilty for indulging a little too much or for not pushing myself hard enough at the gym.

    Like you say, guilt is SO damaging. It does nothing but damage – often resulting in binge eating and self-sabotage.

    We all need to learn to love ourselves and our bodies no matter what 🙂

  14. Sarah says:

    I think the problem with guilt for a lot of us (me included) is that you are often raised with it. My mother used guilt as a parental tool. For example, I never got below an A/4.0 because my mother would guilt me into feeling like a total failure. I watched her and learned that if I ate at a restaurant or ate a food that I didn’t know the calorie count of, that meant you were a failure. It’s a learned behaviour, ya know? That doesn’t mean you can’t unlearn it. However, I think that it takes a lot of conscious effort, and that effort is continous until your strategies that replace guilt become habit. I still find myself feeling guilty quite a bit…more about personal relationships than about eating and exercise now, but the effect is the same. An that’s the other thing….you can move guilt out of one aspect of your life, but it doesn’t always move out of the others.

    I agree with the others – excellent post and chart 🙂

    • Mish says:

      I think that is REALLY true. You can take guilt from one thing ie: food and place it into exercise, work etc. It’s not about re-locating’s about lessening it. Great point Sarah, thank you for sharing.

  15. Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) says:

    I’m still laughing from Booger!

    Guilt is just terrible- I feel it as well- more from a family point of view- what I should or should not be doing to help/assist/take over/not take over etc. It wrecks my insides when it happens. My hubs doesn’t understand it and says that I shouldn’t feel guilty for the things I do (or more!)…I hate to say but I think it’s just ingrained. Grr.

    Glad you are breaking the cycle and getting a handle on things. You deserve that and so much more.

  16. All Women Stalker says:

    My struggle with guilt stems from my past and my OC behavior. I’ve let go of the things in my past and thus have sort of relieved some of the guilt issues. With the OC guilty part of me, I just try to see things rationally. I work hard on letting it go. I’m happy to be in this position in life because guilt has gave me sleepless nights and unhealthy relationships in the past. Even now every now and then….

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