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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Grief and guilt are worthless, not you!

Grief and guilt cripple you. When they arise, face them. And they will melt away.

Last evening I was talking to a young friend who quit her job a few months ago and has been struggling to find another one. She quit her job because her boss used to bully her a lot. And she can’t fathom why she’s unable to land another one, especially when she’s exceptionally talented. There are times, she confessed, when she’s overcome by guilt – over having chucked her job and grief – over her inability to find another one!

I told her that grief and guilt are very normal emotions. We mustn’t resist either of them. Instead watch them arise, feel them, cry if you must, but also consider their futile nature. How can grieving help? How can being guilty help? When you examine these questions closely you will realize that what’s over is over. The more you live in the past, clinging on a wretched memory, the more you will suffer. Any suffering is depressive. You will start feeling worthless. So, when grief and guilt arise, face them with absolute clarity. These emotions are worthless. Not you. And through this awareness begin to look at what actions can you take to make the situation that you are grieving over, or feeling guilty about, better.

You end up making a lot of decisions in Life. Not all decisions may work out the way you want them to. You will, at times, even feel stupid that you took such a regrettable, lousy call. Don’t let that feeling of remorse pin you down. Learn from that decision, from the experience. In my young friend’s case, perhaps the learning is that she could have been more prudent about how she wanted to deal with a bullying boss. She must have now learnt that quitting her job was not the only option she had. She could have, well, reported him – especially since her employer was a MNC with some great workplace practices. Anything that happens in Life, if it hasn’t killed you yet, makes you stronger and wiser. As you grow and evolve in Life, you will see how wasteful grief and guilt are. Through your awareness you will learn to let them go. And you will then just be!

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