Having to apologize can be difficult. Admitting we were wrong or said or did something to hurt someone else is a humbling, but at some time or another we’re all in a position where we should be making an apology, and we should be making it just as loud as the offense we made. So many times the apology is mumbled or said in a quiet shameful tone when we should stand up and take responsibility for our actions, admit where we were wrong and do what we can to make it right, if we can. An apology is not the time to speak in hushed tones, in fact it should be even louder than what we’re apologizing for.
Before walking the path I am now I very rarely apologized for anything. I could usually justify my behavior, no matter how wrong it may have been, so that I never felt I owed anyone an apology, in fact, my thinking back then could convince me that not only did I not owe anyone an apology that I may have been owed one instead. But even with all that justification I knew deep down that my behavior wasn’t right and I carried around a lot of guilt which fed my disease and the narrative that I was a bad person who only deserved bad things. My inability to apologize was a self-fulfilling prophecy that kept me sick and in the darkness. When I made a commitment to get well, and live my life with rigorous honesty, those deeds of my past came quickly into focus. I had dodged a lot of responsibility for my actions and the actions of my past were now coming back to haunt me, and my conscience. Not only did I owe a list of apologies but I had to learn to apologize right, and in many cases not only make the apology but amend the bad behavior that caused it. I also had to learn to make my apologies under the right circumstances. My apologies could not be self-serving, meaning they could not be made to make myself feel better but cause harm the other person, they also could not be made if I wasn’t 100% sorry for my part, and I was willing to only look at my part and not how the other person may or may not have contributed to the event I was apologizing for. It was about keeping my side of the street clean, and that went, and still does, for the apology itself. And, I could not shy away from the truth and quietly apologize to make it easier on myself, making things easier on myself kept me sick, so I had to stand up and take responsibility with as much fortitude as I did when committed the act and felt I wronged. Not an easy task at times, but the reward far outweighed the uncomfortablness of it, and, as I grew accustomed to it, the healing and building of self-esteem and accountability helped me to mend those wounds I had caused, to others, and myself. It also gave me pause when I found myself at a crossroads of doing or saying the right thing, or sliding back to my old behavior that would cause more wreckage I would have to atone for later. Those apologies kept me on the straight and narrow and repaired many relationships I had bruised or broken in the past.
Admitting where we were wrong may not be easy, but living with the guilt of our actions can be more difficult or damaging. Our apologies should come from a sincere heart and should not be shied away from. We should apologize with the same strength and conviction we did when we committed the offense to show our sincerity and to honor the other person we had wronged. Even in instances where the blame is shared, it is important to focus on our part only and wipe away the damage we contributed to the overall situation. And where we are not able to correct what we wronged, we amend the behavior that brought us there so that we may not repeat the behavior with someone else. We, as SLAYERS, do not hide from our mistakes and responsibilities, we stand tall and admit where we were wrong knowing it’ll make us stronger for doing so as we continue to walk this path. SLAY on!
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you find it difficult to apologize when you are wrong? Do you see where you are wrong or do you place the blame solely on others? How have you been wrong in the past? Have you been able to change that behavior? How? If not, why not? How many times have you had to apologize for the same behavior? Or haven’t you apologized? How does that make you feel? Who do you owe an apology right now? What’s stopping you from making that apology? When was the last time you apologized? How did that make you feel? What as the result of that apology? When was the last time someone apologized to you? How did that make you feel? Apologize where you are wrong, use each apology as a learning tool and a building exercise to increase your self-esteem and self-worth, you will not only see yourself in a better light you will build up the relationships in your life with strength, honor and respect.
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you