In our lives, everyone has blamed someone else for misfortunes, if only in thought. Our brain quickly finds someone, we can blame (rather: to guilt) for our problems – as the one to blame is the one with the guilt. We often know, that we could have done something different, but rather blame the stranger, the weather or the event organizer. In my opinion, we lack the insight, that only we determine our reality – our fellow human beings, the weather or the event organizer actually only do, what we ” had in mind”. That may sound crazy, but is reality on closer examination.
Has anyone ever thought about the difference between guilt and responsibility? In English, this is harder to explain then in German, but in my opinion, the only difference is, that guilt is negative, while we use the word responsibility more for (up to date) positive events. Finally, an event organizer has the responsibility for a festival; if something goes wrong, he will be blamed and is “guilty”. On the other hand, guilt should also put us directly to responsibility – after all, we are guilty of doing something “wrong”. Usually, it should be our responsibility to remedy this guilt. If it’s too late for that, we should at least be aware, that we’ve “done wrong” and learn – so we made the mistake for the last time, rather than repeating it.
If you read in other sources, you are advised to never mix guilt and responsibility – in my opinion this is nonsense. It is described, that guilt leads to drama and it also prevents responsibility – exactly the same nonsense. Problem is our habit. We are accustomed to taking as little responsibility as possible, want the pity of others and want to suffer (!) – only then, everything stays as we are used to. However, if you want the world to remain as it is, you do not want it to stay (Erich Fried said) – in my opinion the sentence should be paraphrased: Who wants the world to remain as it is, prevents a better future.
To illustrate my thesis, here’s an example: I am responsible for the trip – I’m guilty (to blame) for the trip. Where is the difference in the meaning?
To escape from this hamster wheel, in my opinion, there is only one solution: to get up mentally and take responsibility for your own life. This includes the responsibility /blame /guilt for/to incorporate all of one’s life events as part of oneself (if only mentally) and realizing, that each individual decides his own destiny – through thoughts, feelings, and intuition.
Over time, the sense of guilt fades away and turns into a pleasant responsibility, from which you learn, get stronger and through which you improve yourself daily. As time passes, you will experience ever greater and more beautiful events in your life, enjoying every moment of your existence, and you´ll be glad you took the long overdue step of self-discovery. While doing this, it is important, that you never wait for others and go your way. Who waits for others, waits a lifetime.