We all can do a little better to stop apologizing & shift to saying what we really mean.
Think about it, when we apologize all the time, what we’re doing is actually saying we are “sorry” for asking what we NEED. We have been “taught” it’s inconvenient to ask for what we need. How many times have you uttered the words, “I’m sorry” when you haven’t offended someone or made an error? While you may think your reflexive apology shows respect or accommodation, it’s actually making you appear less confident.
Depending on the situation or circumstance, of course there is a time and place to use the words “I’m sorry”. Of course, no one is perfect, we all make mistakes, and you should apologize and be responsible for them. Also, if you hurt someone’s feelings unintentionally you need to apologize. Same goes if you accidentally threw a ball and it hit a person or window. You get it…
Here are 7 alternatives for saying “I’m sorry” and take your power back:
- If you unintentionally bump into someone on the street or in a crowded space, say “excuse me”.
- In an email or text instead of “I’m sorry I didn’t get to this to you sooner”, say “I’m so glad I can get this information to you”
- Say “thank you…” instead. Don’t say “sorry I am late, say, “thank you for your patience, there was traffic”
- Use the words “I desire”. Ask for what you want do not say, “I’m sorry to ask for A-B-C or D”. Say “I desire this…”
- In the workplace or at school instead of “I’m sorry I got this wrong” try “What can I do to improve this, it didn’t go as well as I had planned, but I got this”
- Don’t apologize for having an opinion or asking a question simply say “Is now a good time to…”
When you shift from habitually saying you’re sorry, you move into a place of confidence where it’s okay to take up your space, to be ambitious, to feel your power. It’s hard to self-celebrate when you’re apologizing for yourself. It’s about having a confident mindset rather than an apologetic mindset.