Who experiences guilt? Most of us do, at some point in our lives.
However, some experience it a lot, especially those experiencing eating disorders and disordered eating. ' I feel guilty eating more than the ED voice tells me to' or 'I feel guilty that I didn't do the chores even though I had a stomping headache' or' I felt guilty when I didn't exercise for exactly 1 hour'. And so the list goes on....
But what is guilt? The Cambridge Dictionary defines guilt as: 'a feeling of worry or unhappiness that you have because you have done something wrong, such as causing harm to another person'.
Wiki also defines guilt as 'an emotional experience that occurs when a person believes or realises—accurately or not—that they have compromised their own standards of conduct or have violated universal moral standards and bear significant responsibility for that violation'.
The important point we often apply guilt to things that we don't need or warrant feeling guilty for. Our interpretations and perceptions are what often lead to feelings of guilt.
We talk about guilt a lot in osychotherapy, especially with those clients who are experiencing eating disorders/disordered eating. It literally 'eats' away at them, because of the power ED has over biasing and warping their perception and interpretation of situations, events and themselves.
If you need or want to working on feelings of guilt, we are here to support you. Just get in touch if you would like to work with one of our experienced, encouraging, supportive qualified psychotherapists or counsellors. Online and in-person appointments available.
I've attached a poster below about guilt too, and hope you find it useful. Take care and take it easy on yourself today.
Talking EDs (Glasgow and West Eating Disorders Support Service)