The Psychological and Physiciological Effects of Guilt Essay

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Abstract:     Guilt has physiological and psychological effects. The psychological effects can include something bad, such as feelings of worthlessness or inferiority. Guilt can also serve in a positive way as a motivator. A person may suffer physiological effects such as insomnia and physical pain. Discussion:     Guilt is feelings of culpability, especially for imagined offenses or from a sense of inadequacy. There are negative physiological effects caused by guilt. Guilt can make someone over responsible. They will think that life has to be perfect, and will do everything to try to please everyone. It may make someone over conscientious so that they may neglect their needs to avoid…show more content…
This serves as a motivator to change. As guilt causes discomfort, it can be used as a need to change things in your life, and eliminate the guilt. For example, if someone bullied an individual, they would probably eventually realize they have wronged that person and feel guilty. The guilt would motivate the bully to change their attitude, which would lead to a better life.      Moreover, continual guilt may affect someone physiologically. Someone feeling guilty may suffer from: languidness, imagined illness, real illness, headaches, stomach disorders, and vague pains. Guilt can also cause cardiovascular strain which reduces relational intimacy and a startle response which creates feelings of alienation. It may even be a detriment to work performance because it can cause hyperarousal. A person may also feel chronically fatigued. Without apparent cause, one may experience physical aches and pain.      More seriously, guilt can keep someone from sleeping because of immoderate time spent in REM. This lack of sleep causes increased susceptibility to disease. During sleep, the body’s immune system undergoes repair. Therefore, with lack of sleep, the immune system does not have time to repair itself and is weakened.      Guilt may also immobilize you. An individual may be so overwhelmed by the fear of doing, acting, saying or

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