Can CBT help with guilt?

There can be different definitions of guilt depending who you ask. Padesky refers to the breaking of one's own rules.

Dryden talks about guilt having cognitive, emotional and behavioural features, where the person infers that they have broken their moral code or hurt someone as a result of their actions.

Chronic guilt can also involve the person regarding themselves as bad or a failure as a result of their acts or omissions.

CBT can be useful in helping people to change, if they are prone to guilt.

This may involve exploring and understanding the beliefs and behaviours which keep the old habit going and building new understanding and habits.

Like any new habit, this may feel uncomfortable at first, but this is a sign that it is not the status quo and is to be welcomed, as the person breaks the old guilt habit cycle.