Although the most acute judges of the witches and even the witches themselves, were convinced of the guilt of witchery, the guilt nevertheless was non-existent. It is thus with all guilt.~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Have you found yourself motivated by guilt for skipping chores because you chose to go out with your friends? Or do you use the opposite extreme by making sure that no one can fault you for anything because you cannot bear being in any situation where you might be seen as less than. Either of these is driven by guilt, so let's take a look at how this negative motivation can drive you and how you can motivate yourself without guilt attached to it.
What's in your past that pushes at you via Guilt?
Jamshid loved the days of courtship in his youth, but the actual events were tainted by his memories of his mother, who had sat in harsh judgment of all his friends during his growing up years. He became convinced that no one would measure up to her unreasonable standards. He felt compelled to introduce the women that he felt strongest about, but he approached the event with cold blood and a twisted stomach. He could not bear the idea that, once again, he'd be disappointing her and he became overcome with guilt as his inability.
After a respite, Guilt always pops up again
Jamshid would recover from these introductions, eventually drop the girl who "wasn't really good enough," and begin to date another. His lingering guilt would send him home to mom to do chores around the house for her, and to take her out to a play or dinner. This appeased his guilt and let him feel good for a while.
Guilt is a motivator because for those things you've done "wrong," you can always do more good things to make up for it. You'll feel good about those constructive things, but then guilt will raise its ugly head once again.
Can you sustain never having a sense of Peace?
Guilt because of his mother's harsh judgments is what motivated Jamshid. He felt guilty every time he found a new woman, because his mother's voice was inside his head talking harsh judgments all the time, and he knew the day would come when he'd have to face her head on...and he knew the result of that would be negative, too.
He would do nice things for his mother trying to smooth out her negativity, and he felt good about those things for a while, but they were always followed by a crash-and-burn guilt-driven session. He never experienced peace. He was living a life of co-dependent enabling based on guilt and this led to an endless cycle of behavior. He seldom got recognition for doing something right and he was miserable and unhappy.
Turn This Around - Learn How To Motivate Yourself
Jamshid can ask himself precisely what he would like in place of what he's experiencing. He can imagine what his experiences might be like if there was no judgment from his mother and no guilt for never pleasing her. If he decides to honor his own wishes, wants and desires as an adult vs. hers, he can slowly move toward more happiness.
Jamshid's mother knows he is doing nice things for her strictly out of guilt. If she can restrain herself from her negative comments and judgments, she will be able to form a more mature adult relationship with her son and feel that the nice things he does for her are more real, more honest.
If you can determine where the guilty feelings are coming from, you'll be taking the first step in learning how to motivate yourself without guilt attached to it.
Fear is the tax that conscience pays to guilt. ~ George Sewell