Guilt often gets a bad rap. We have been told that all guilt is bad. Guilt is rather just a signal. See we all have an inner code we want to live by. And when we don’t, we feel guilt.When we do live by our standards, our self perception is raised.

When you feel guilty when you don’t exercise, it is because you know you want to live in a healthy body. The problem is when we use guilt to help us feel badly about ourselves instead of using it as a call to action. Create a plan, so next time it will be more likely you will follow through with exercise. Exercise at a different time, wake up earlier, find an exercise that is more fun, etc. If you use your guilt to say to yourself, “I am so lazy, I can’t ever keep at anything,” next time you are even less likely to exercise.ÂÂ

When you feel guilty for yelling at your kids, it’s because you have an inner standard against yelling. So you need to apologize and figure out a way to keep your temper in check. Someone I know has a word his kids use when he starts yelling. He says it has greatly stopped the yelling. But, what happens when you feel guilty and then decide you are just a horrible person. Well according to your standard you probably think horrible people yell all the time. Therefore, that thought pattern is not going to help you control your temper.

Next time you get that twinge of guilt, don’t run away from it and don’t use it to belittle yourself. Use it so you can become a person who lives what they believe. A life of integrity.