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    compulsive's Avatar
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    How could you deal with the guilt?

    Others always expect too much of me because I put on a false persona. Its my real personality, however it gives the impression that I am outgoing and smart, competent and confident etc.

    My anxiety gets really bad and I cannot manage to do a good enough job of anything because of it. As a result people are constantly disappointed in me and I always let them down.

    I am constantly forced with the choice of hurting others so I can do something, or not doing things so I dont hurt others. Essentially between a rock and a hard place.

    When I talk to others its only a matter of time before I say something really offensive. I cant stop hearing my voice from repeating the words of what I have said. The worst part is I never get an opportunity to undo any of my mistakes. People always pretend and lie, so you can never apologize.

    How could you possibly deal with constantly hurting or disappointing others (that haven't done anything but be nice to you)?

  2. #2
    takethebiscuit's Avatar
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    I can't promise anything but there is a process I use with my private clients that I think might really help you. Message me for more details if you're interested.

    Guilt can be one of the strongest causes of anxiety. You've got guilt, regret, shame and remorse. Those things then cause anxiety and worry which can then lead to anger, upset, feelings of letting people down etc. Those feelings of letting people down then lead to guilt, regret, remorse etc and the anxiety cycle begins again.

    This is now what happens for everyone who experiences anxiety. We are all different. But it does happen like that for some people.

    I've worked with clients to break this cycle and it's helped my clients make positive changes in their lives.

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    Chopin12's Avatar
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    you have to give up the people pleasing. you will never be free until you do. take it from me, please. the people pleasing is the most insidious thought system in the world.

    quit trying to impress other people, do what they want, or make them happy. live for yourself. thats the only way to be free. its not going to change all at once, because we are so used to the people pleasing. but gradually let go of it.

    and im not saying go out and be a cold bi** ... no... just let go of the whole people pleasing concept. until then you will have tremendous guilt because NO ONE can ever live up to the expectations of another person fully. no one.

    you will always fall short of something. you will always mess something up. everyone knows in their own heart what they're worth. it's the other people who don't recognize your worth, because they don't see you as the same as them. thats why we can get so mad, guilted, or sad when people judge us. because we know we're worthy and we know their judgements aren't correct.
    “A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside it remains the same.” — Brock

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    Antidote's Avatar Rude & Shouty
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    You've got nothing to be guilty about when your intentions are good.

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    compulsive's Avatar
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    Quote Chopin12 View Post
    you have to give up the people pleasing. you will never be free until you do. take it from me, please. the people pleasing is the most insidious thought system in the world.

    quit trying to impress other people, do what they want, or make them happy. live for yourself. thats the only way to be free. its not going to change all at once, because we are so used to the people pleasing. but gradually let go of it.

    and im not saying go out and be a cold bi** ... no... just let go of the whole people pleasing concept. until then you will have tremendous guilt because NO ONE can ever live up to the expectations of another person fully. no one.

    you will always fall short of something. you will always mess something up. everyone knows in their own heart what they're worth. it's the other people who don't recognize your worth, because they don't see you as the same as them. thats why we can get so mad, guilted, or sad when people judge us. because we know we're worthy and we know their judgements aren't correct.

    hi. I dont really think its people pleasing. I was having a multi-day panic attack type thing then. I got so tired and anxious I could barely function. Perhaps it was just a prolonged reaction to exposure therapy.

    In general I do feel guilty a lot over minor things. Its not because I want to please others, but because I don't want to hurt other people :/. If I thought someone expected something of me that was immoral or unrealistic for normal people , then I would not feel guilty.

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    compulsive's Avatar
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    Quote takethebiscuit View Post
    I can't promise anything but there is a process I use with my private clients that I think might really help you. Message me for more details if you're interested.

    Guilt can be one of the strongest causes of anxiety. You've got guilt, regret, shame and remorse. Those things then cause anxiety and worry which can then lead to anger, upset, feelings of letting people down etc. Those feelings of letting people down then lead to guilt, regret, remorse etc and the anxiety cycle begins again.

    This is now what happens for everyone who experiences anxiety. We are all different. But it does happen like that for some people.

    I've worked with clients to break this cycle and it's helped my clients make positive changes in their lives.
    Have any of them had extreme guilt to minor things also? Im thinking it might be connected to my OCD.

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    compulsive's Avatar
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    Quote Antidote View Post
    You've got nothing to be guilty about when your intentions are good.
    Unfortunately, when people see me as a normal person they expect what a normal person can do. When *I cant achieve that they will be let down and will hate *me. Can I really say I tried my hardest? No , I cant. I avoid too much and dont push myself enough.

    *edited. I tend to write in third person when im explaining things for some weird reason. I actually mean to write in first person.

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    takethebiscuit's Avatar
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    Quote compulsive View Post
    Have any of them had extreme guilt to minor things also? Im thinking it might be connected to my OCD.
    Yes, many of them had extreme guilt to minor things. I took them through the process and it helped many of them. Some had other issues such as OCD that also needed to be worked on and we then set about working on those issues.

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    Chopin12's Avatar
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    haha sorry, i went on a bit there. most of my guilt comes from not doing what people expect of me and then i feel guilty because i fell short or did something wrong. but if i just didnt give a crap at all then there would be no guilt.

    but its good that u dont feel that way and dont wanna hurt people thats really nice (=
    “A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside it remains the same.” — Brock

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    takethebiscuit's Avatar
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    Quote Chopin12 View Post
    haha sorry, i went on a bit there. most of my guilt comes from not doing what people expect of me and then i feel guilty because i fell short or did something wrong. but if i just didnt give a crap at all then there would be no guilt.

    but its good that u dont feel that way and dont wanna hurt people thats really nice (=
    Hi. Enjoyed reading that and I'm curious: do you think the guilt you experience is linked to your anxiety in any way?

    I should just add that when working with guilt, therapists do not try and make it so the client doesn't give a crap. Instead, we help the resolve their feelings of guilt so that they can make better choices and behave in different ways in the future.

    We all make mistakes. It's part of being human. Guilt does not stop us from making mistakes. It just makes us feel bad and more likely to get lost in a cycle of feeling bad about ourselves, feel anxious etc. In order to make a change, it's a good idea to resolve the guilt.

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    Chopin12's Avatar
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    It's probably linked in some ways.. some of my anxieties come from being guilted, so the anxiety is the fear of being guilted again

    when I say "dont give a crap" it sounds pretty immature, but thats just the way Im putting it. Guilt comes from a perception you hold. "I did something wrong" or even "I didnt do something right" "I could have done this instead" or "I didnt meet this expectation"

    so, to me, the best way to get out of the guilt cycle is to change your perceptions. as long as you perceive that you're doing something wrong, or falling short you're going to feel guilty in some way. Im saying reverse that. believe you dont need to "do a thing" right in order to be whole and complete. it all goes back to the people pleasing thing I talked about earlier. thats one of the biggest sources of guilt in this world, not doing what people have said you should do.

    to me, you'll never get out of the cycle if you still hold these beliefs. you can try to go at it from a behavioral angle but that doesnt look at the root of the problem, our beliefs and perceptions - because no matter how hard you try to come at it from a behavioral point of view, its not going to change. the guilt will take a different form and still manifest. the guilt is inside of you, its the content and not the form. the content can come in many forms, and it will keep coming.
    “A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside it remains the same.” — Brock

  12. #12
    pam's Avatar needs more cowbell
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    Quote compulsive View Post
    Others always expect too much of me because I put on a false persona. Its my real personality, however it gives the impression that I am outgoing and smart, competent and confident etc.

    My anxiety gets really bad and I cannot manage to do a good enough job of anything because of it. As a result people are constantly disappointed in me and I always let them down.

    I am constantly forced with the choice of hurting others so I can do something, or not doing things so I dont hurt others. Essentially between a rock and a hard place.

    When I talk to others its only a matter of time before I say something really offensive. I cant stop hearing my voice from repeating the words of what I have said. The worst part is I never get an opportunity to undo any of my mistakes. People always pretend and lie, so you can never apologize.

    How could you possibly deal with constantly hurting or disappointing others (that haven't done anything but be nice to you)?
    It sounds like you are way too focused on living up to what you think others' expectations of you would be. Maybe it is, like you said, connected to OCD (which i know nothing about), but if not maybe you can lessen your irrational guilt by 1. truly giving yourself permission to make mistakes--you're allowed to, everyone else does! and 2. focus on being true to yourself--there's nothing wrong with that. Obviously you are a caring moral person so you can learn to have and use your own standards for how to be, and it's ok if you let others down--so what? All you can be is yourself, and that's enough!

    I used to be on some kind of automatic pilot where I was just Miss Compliant with whatever and whoever I was around. I finally realized how fake I was being, and that I had given up my true SELF to (yes, please others) and to avoid dreaded rejection. I couldn't stand it anymore and so I decided to be myself whether others liked it or not! As I got stronger inside, I was able to let go of that strong need to avoid rejection, and now I can be myself....Sometimes....lol.

  13. #13
    takethebiscuit's Avatar
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    Quote Chopin12 View Post
    It's probably linked in some ways.. some of my anxieties come from being guilted, so the anxiety is the fear of being guilted again

    when I say "dont give a crap" it sounds pretty immature, but thats just the way Im putting it. Guilt comes from a perception you hold. "I did something wrong" or even "I didnt do something right" "I could have done this instead" or "I didnt meet this expectation"

    so, to me, the best way to get out of the guilt cycle is to change your perceptions. as long as you perceive that you're doing something wrong, or falling short you're going to feel guilty in some way. Im saying reverse that. believe you dont need to "do a thing" right in order to be whole and complete. it all goes back to the people pleasing thing I talked about earlier. thats one of the biggest sources of guilt in this world, not doing what people have said you should do.

    to me, you'll never get out of the cycle if you still hold these beliefs. you can try to go at it from a behavioral angle but that doesnt look at the root of the problem, our beliefs and perceptions - because no matter how hard you try to come at it from a behavioral point of view, its not going to change. the guilt will take a different form and still manifest. the guilt is inside of you, its the content and not the form. the content can come in many forms, and it will keep coming.
    I agree to a certain extent and thank you for posting this as it's very intelligent discussion on the issue.

    What I've found is that guilt can go beyond perceptions. Sometimes it's not a matter of people pleasing. Sometimes, we don't feel guilty because we didn't please someone else...we feel guilty because we behaved in a way that violated our values, was harmful to ourselves or others etc.

    For example:

    Someone who suffers from anxiety gets angry. Their anger results in an outburst of some kind or some behaviour. Once they've calmed down, the anxiety sufferer feels guilty about their outburst/behaviour not because it displeased others (although that can be part of it) but because they're not the kind of person who acts like that normally. They behaved in a way contrary to their own values, ethics and view of themselves.

    Another example: A person who suffers from anxiety really wants to go to a concert. They love the band and buy the tickets but they are too anxious to go to the concert. They miss the concert. They see pics of the concert online and realise it was a great night for those who went. They then wish they'd gone to the concert and enjoyed themselves. They feel guilty because they feel they stopped themselves from going to the concert and the guilt begins the anxiety cycle all over again.

    Then you have the guilt that results from trauma: an accident happened to me or someone I care about. I made a decision that I think resulted in that accident happening. Therefore I feel guilt. If only I had not made that decision or made a different decision. Then things would be different. I should be punished for making the wrong decision and causing bad things to happen....

    That's not guilt about pleasing people. That's guilt focused around one individual and how they view their actions in the past.

    You are right that there is guilt involved in worrying about pleasing others and I think it's a good idea to look at the many different type of guilt and how they relate to anxiety disorders/issues.

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    Chopin12's Avatar
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    yea i totally understand your point, the other half of it isnt really people pleasing so much as perceiving that you did something wrong... based on your own beliefs
    “A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside it remains the same.” — Brock

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    Quote pam View Post
    It sounds like you are way too focused on living up to what you think others' expectations of you would be. Maybe it is, like you said, connected to OCD (which i know nothing about), but if not maybe you can lessen your irrational guilt by 1. truly giving yourself permission to make mistakes--you're allowed to, everyone else does! and 2. focus on being true to yourself--there's nothing wrong with that. Obviously you are a caring moral person so you can learn to have and use your own standards for how to be, and it's ok if you let others down--so what? All you can be is yourself, and that's enough!

    I used to be on some kind of automatic pilot where I was just Miss Compliant with whatever and whoever I was around. I finally realized how fake I was being, and that I had given up my true SELF to (yes, please others) and to avoid dreaded rejection. I couldn't stand it anymore and so I decided to be myself whether others liked it or not! As I got stronger inside, I was able to let go of that strong need to avoid rejection, and now I can be myself....Sometimes....lol.
    Its not really like that. I dont help people in any way or take interest in their problems. I pretty much dont care about other people at all when im alone, no exaggeration. I can for example easy cut off ties with most people I have met. Its not out of kindness, or caring or anything like that. I feel nothing towards most people (especially when i'm alone) , unfortunately.

    It is hard to explain and I know it sounds ridiculous to capable people like yourself but, the problem is that there is a limit on how much I can impose on others and how much I can fail them before it gets too much. Its a more of a desire to not be bad, rather than a desire to be good, if you know what I mean.

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