Do you know the definition of guilt? "The state of being responsible for the commission of an offense. It is also a cognitive or an emotional experience that occurs when a person realizes or believes - accurately or not - that he or she has violated a moral standard and bears significant responsibility for that violation." (Wikipedia, accessed 4-26-12)
So I am participating in this month-long journal challenge/exercise/class/thing as a precursor to some future fiction writing classes and workshops that I signed up for. Guided journaling is not something I was previously familiar with, but I have to say, I love it! I recommend this type of exercise for any of you, whether you are experiencing writer's block or you are about to embark upon a new commitment in your life that will require a deepened sense of focus. The work is really pretty simple and the fruits of the labor are plentiful for a $20 ebook. I say, well worth it!
I wanted to share a part of the current exercise, which is fun and a nice break from some of the more serious stuff in the previous prompts. It is a mish-mash list of free-flowing, imagination-driven journaling that includes describing:
1. Your earliest childhood memory
2. The place you most want to visit
3. Advice you wish you'd had as a teenager
4. your favorite mouth-watering meal
5. a guilty pleasure
6. a disastrous travel experience
7. your favorite smell and sound
8. 10 values you want your children or future children to have
9. a super power you wish you had
I may just go through this entire list, but for now, I had to laugh at the guilty pleasure part of this because I realized that I have issues with society deeming everything as a "guilty pleasure". The guilt cycle! Ahh! Worst thing ever. Swim away!! :)
My soapbox for the morning is this: I believe guilt is something that is supposed to be there for crappy things we do like being wasteful and ignoring our friends and neighbors when they are in need of serious help or swearing in front of our children or being quick-tempered and doing (insert blank).
But these aren't "pleasures".
So what is a "guilty" "pleasure"? Something you do that makes you feel good, but bad at at the same time? An action that you know or believe is wrong, but you do it anyway.
I am being honest here, folks. These are my real "guilty" "pleasures":
1. speeding, although I can't do it here in Kansas because of my CA plates. I have to be on my best behavior...
2. swearing, although I don't think I have done this in a while because of little h...
3. paying money to get my car detailed. haha can't remember when I last did this...
4. buying books new when I already have at least a year's worth on my shelf :)
What are your guilty pleasures? Are they holding you up in some kind of serious guilt cycle, or can you shrug them off and move on?