Many times, we have heard people say that the youths are the future leaders of tomorrow. The much trumpeted leaders of tomorrow are left with more questions than answers about their future. Unemployment, homelessness, rejection, separation from parents and divorce have created the feelings of fear, worry, inferiority complex, self-pity, anger, hatred, jealousy, guilt and mental disorder - a whole bunch of destructive emotions in the minds of these teens.
The youths can only be effective when they take control of their feelings. A youth who has failed to control his emotion is at war with himself or herself. An average youth acts by what he feels (emotion) and this feelings when allowed to filter through the mind can lead to either positive or negative reactions. Some have taken to drinking, smoking, violence, and even suicide in extreme cases. We should not blame them because there is a cause for every effect.
What is emotion?
Emotion has to do with our feelings which is closely related to a part of our character. It is an endowment by GOD and of immense importance if properly harnessed and rightly channeled. Emotion is the drawing force of the personality and when driven in a wrong and contrary direction it becomes a battleground instead of a smoothly working whole.
How can teenagers find themselves as been emotionally healthy?
All our actions depends on our feelings and we all have different range of emotions which goes in an up swing and down swing trend in the process of life. We do not feel good all the time. A person who is happy in the morning can suddenly have a change in their mood. As we move along the path of life we can experience feelings of guilt, rejection, hatred, self--doubt, love, jealousy, joy and depression.
Teenagers who are healthy are usually happy, they have good sense of humor, they take life easy, they are comfortable with themselves and will face life challenges courageously. Inability to cope with life, guilt, fear, loneliness and rejection are some of the feelings that leads to suicide. Suicide is one of the major catastrophes of our times and it is common among the teens and college students. Marlow's theory on '' Hierarchy of Needs '' talk about the crises that spring up when the lower basic needs of life are not met. When you are okay and I am not okay, negative feelings can be incited in the mind which consequently leads to deviant behaviour.
Causes and Effects of Guilt
Guilt is one destructive emotion that has been a challenge for the youths. What are the causes? SHAME is the primary cause of guilt. Poor grades in school, failure, unhappy childhood experiences, mental and physical pain you inflicted on your neighbour which has led to regret are all few examples of the cause. The effect of this feeling leads to ineffectiveness and under productivity if not addressed quickly.It is characterized by feelings of condemnation, filthiness, unworthiness, inadequacy, imperfection etc. This ignites fear, anxiety and inner insecurity in the mind. Youths who suffer from guilt feelings have gone into hiding. Some have become so secretive to the extent that they think their 'secret' is beamed into the entire world .The are haunted by their negative past experiences. One disadvantage of guilt is, it discovers and torments the victim no matter the thickness of your covering.
Types of Guilt
Subjective guilt is an ill feeling that arises within us when we consciously do wrong or discover we did wrong. This may be as a result of violating legal, moral, societal, religious or ethical standards.
Psychological guilt is a negative feeling that arises as a result of preoccupation on past negative issues..The devil sets a standard in your mind that denies you forgiveness of yourself even when GOD has forgiven you.
My Suggested Solutions
You need to discover who you are and know yourself. Always do a self assessment of yourself regularly and accept your limitations and your strengths. To be honest we all have made mistakes. We have had negative experiences that we were the cause of the consequences. Okay you are the cause but why carry the guilt so heavily in your mind. You can transcend these feelings. Forgive yourself and build your trust in GOD. Have faith in HIM and give your life to JESUS CHRIST. Through prayer you can pull down the standards of the devil in your mind. When the mental pictures of negative events flash through your mind ask for HIS grace to remove it. Take charge of your mental pictures.
As a teenager talk to your parents about anything that trouble your mind. Open up to them and tell them all your secret thoughts . If you are hearing strange voices and thoughts of condemnation pray to GOD and quickly explain these to your parents. Forget all your past mistakes and make positive affirmations on a daily basis. You are not condemned.
Teenagers have very good imagination and most of their experiences could be real or imaginary. As I explained earlier that guilt is a feeling of condemnation connected to unhappy childhood experiences in the home,poor grades in school and turbulent eviction from home, as a youth you can transcend ill feelings and be a barrier breaker. Choose happiness, contentment and take charge of your life. May you and I be part of HIS divine kingdom where righteousness, peace and joy prevail.