What is Natural Guilt?

Naturally, humans feel guilty when they are told they have made some mistakes in life that they did unknowingly. 
 
woman being blamed
Image from Pixabay

Guilt is a habit and a quality too. Have you heard your parents telling you to say sorry every time you hide from them something that is important to them? Are you aware of how you feel when your parents catch you red-handed during your childhood when you are making a mistake or hidden something that is a big-time goof-up? Well, that feeling when your parents scold you and you stand there dumbfounded is nothing but guilt. You feel guilty or apologetic to have done something that you shouldn't have done and that's how you grow up.

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Naturally, humans feel guilty when they are told they have made some mistakes in life that they did unknowingly. For example, you decided to cut the mangoes for your child with the skin removed and you present them to him so that he will relish the most important fruit of his life. But you feel guilty when he decides not to eat them because he likes to eat the mangoes with skin. You convince him to adjust and eat but still, he leaves the plate full of mangoes as it is. Thus, making you feel guilty for not having known what your child likes or doesn't like. This is the natural guilt that we are going to talk about in detail.

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You write a campaign for marketing a new product that has been launched by your organization. You make all the arrangements for the campaign launch because you think your boss would just love it. However, your boss's friend who is also accompanying him in the meeting tells you that the campaign is not worth to be launched. Instead of getting angry over the boss's friend, if your self-worth is quite low, you will immediately start feeling guilty for not living up to the expectations of your boss and his friend in the meeting.

Generally, people who think they don't deserve a lot of good things in their life fall into the trap of guilt thinking naturally. For example, I met a man in his 60s who cried the whole year after his wife passed away during the COVID-19 times. When I heard his story, he was full of guilt and feelings of sorry for his situation. He narrated how he felt guilty to even live his life further because his wife is no longer alive. He felt guilty for not having detected his wife's health issues beforehand and giving her the required treatment. He felt guilty for not caring and expressing his love for his wife when she was alive. He felt guilty for not having done enough so that his wife could be proud of him.

The above examples show how people can be trapped in misery and misfortune if they don't get a clear picture of their life. If they don't find logical reasons to lead their life, they will always feel sorry for any wrong thing that happened to them or to others, thus staying in the guilt trap forever. For such people, counseling and therapy can be of major help because they can get rid of guilt thinking and move on in their lives.