"Guilt means I am holding onto the past; worry means I want to control the future. Both show that I am not living in the present moment."
Many emotions that we feel, we have direct control over. It is so easy to feel like a "victim" in life. We all act like victims of our circumstance. The truth is we can instantly change many of our emotions with the force of will. It is only our unbelief, our lack of faith, that makes us feel enslaved to every emotion. We need to see ourselves as separate from our body, mind and emotions.
If we do this, we can see that we can observe the emotions much more easily, and, consequently, understand why we feel a certain way. Understanding takes power away from the emotions. We see that we feel a certain way in a certain situation and take note of it. We, then, are better prepared to handle that situation in the future. For example, I may feel guilty about spending money on myself to buy some new pants. However, the pants may be necessary to hold down a job and the guilt is misplaced.
Guilt, when felt genuinely for a legitimate situation where I have wronged others or myself, should be taken seriously directly after the offense. Thereafter, feelings of guilt are a way for me to feel enslaved to that moment in time. Similarly, worry felt for a loved one may be a clue to us that immediate action is needed. Take that action, yet do not hold onto the worry.
Guilt means I am holding onto the past; worry means I want to control the future. Both show that I am not living in the present moment. For the most part, negative emotions are a slave to the ego. The ego does not want to live in the present moment. In the present moment, the ego dissolves away as we are then truly in the presence of God or Self. By a force of will, let go of guilt, let go of worry. They do us no good but serve only to rob us of living our lives. They keep us enslaved to the past and the future, two imaginary domains of the ego.
When else can we live our lives but in the present moment? There is no other time to live so we must drop our imaginary shackles and embrace the freedom that is ours in the here and now.