In this podcast episode, my friend Susana and I talked about guilt.

“It’s such a wasted emotion,” she said…but then we unraveled it a bit more and decided that no, it’s not a waste, it actually points you in the directions of your wants and desires.

You only feel guilty when you really want something and decide to make yourself wrong for wanting what you want instead of granting yourself full permission. The irony is, sometimes the permission is what you actually need to feel resolved, not even the thing you want. Things are often just symptoms.

Frequently the choices that are in our highest and best interests present themselves swaddled in a blanket of guilt.

Guilt is like a right of passage. If you can get past it, the keys to the kingdom (or queendom) are yours. >>Tweet It

A few weeks ago a client emailed me about some guilt she was feeling around a big decision she made that would impact other people in her life. A big decision impacting people other than the person making it is not uncommon. Just because it happens often though, doesn’t make it any easier.

Here’s what I said to her,

“You feel guilty for wanting what you want and your perception that taking action towards getting it is causing others pain or harm.

The part we don’t see when we feel guilt is how the other parties have called in the scenario too, for their own healing/soul’s path, even if it’s painful, even if they think they didn’t choose it.

We are each a thread in a much larger fabric. Thinking our choices only impact us is negligent, and thinking that other people’s desires, needs and growth aren’t also orchestrating right alongside ours is delusional.”

I bounced my views on guilt off a few friends later that day and one responded with this,

“I would also say that the more we just do the things we want with honest communication and gentle explanations of why this is important, the more clearly others will be able to see what is going on in us and make choices accordingly.”

I’d love to know if or how these insights on guilt land for you, let’s have a conversation in the comments! Let me know how you experience guilt, how you handle it, and if anything in this post resonates for you.