Apologizing can be healthy and refreshing, but when is it too much?
There comes a point where we are no longer apologizing to make up for something we did wrong, but instead, we are apologizing because we are being forced into it.
As healthy as it can be to apologize, it is also important to preserve your own self-respect, and know when enough is enough.
Don’t let others bully you into apologizing for every little thing, especially when you have no true regrets about those things in the first place.
Here are 21 things you should never feel you need to apologize about:
1) For seeking closure
We all deserve closure. Whether it’s closure at the end of a long and stormy relationship, or closure after losing a job, your involvement prior to the end of the relationship entitles you to closure when all is said and done.
It isn’t needy, crazy, or obsessive: it’s only your right.
2) For taking a chance on a mistake
At the end of a bad relationship, there are many in your life who are more than happy to say, “I told you he/she wasn’t good for you.” And your response might be, “I know, I’m sorry, I was dumb.”
But the truth is, you have no reason to apologize at all. You saw potential that they didn’t, and not everyone can live up to their potential. That’s fine.
3) For how you spend your money
Many people believe that they have the right to judge how you spend your money. But your money is exactly that: your money.
If you earned it, if you worked for it, and if you saved it, then it’s up to you to decide how you spend it. If others want to make you feel bad for your spending, just block them out.
4) For staying in
Too often we have to go out simply because all our friends are going out. Even if you are tired, exhausted, or just need a quiet day inside without the commotion of other people, you feel obligated to go with them, or apologize if you choose otherwise.
But remember: it isn’t your job to please people. The only one you need to please is yourself.
5) For talking about love and hearbreak
There are some who shame us for expressing the love in our heart—for talking about it, obsessing over it, and even feeling pain when we experience one of the worst emotions possible: heartbreak.
But heartbreak is a part of life, and suppressing it can only stunt your emotional growth. Don’t apologize for feeling love and pain; embrace it.
6) For prioritizing yourself
Not everyone in our life will be kind or good to us. And no matter how kindhearted you may be, you should always have your own lines.
If they cross those lines, then it is time for you to cut them out of your life. Does that make you a bad person? No, and you shouldn’t apologize for it.
It means you are prioritizing yourself, which is never a bad thing.
7) For being vulnerable
Vulnerability is something we all must deal with. Ignoring the vulnerability within you and building walls around the truth only makes your situation worse, harming your mental and emotional growth.
When you feel the need to break down and cry, then do it, no matter how much others say it may be wrong.
8) For protecting yourself
When others have treated us unkindly, they often expect us to continue treating them with the same kindness and respect that we have always granted them, and when we don’t, they make us apologize for our actions.
But this response is protection; it is you protecting yourself from the hate and pain they have caused you. Keep it up.
9) For following your heart
You only live once, and the life you lead and the choices you make will define the path that you leave behind. That’s why it is always better to follow your own dreams and aspirations, rather than listening to the advice of others.
Even if they make you feel bad for your choices, remember: it’s your life, and you are the one who must deal with yourself and your actions every single day. Make sure you start walking down a path that you can be proud of.
10) For shielding your heart
When you have gone through immense pain, your reaction may be to walk away from a situation or break down and close yourself off from other people.
There are some out there who will do their best to convince you that you are wrong, and you must apologize for your weakness. But protecting yourself isn’t weakness; it’s growth.
11) For Being Honest
And the most important thing you should never apologize for? Honesty. There will be many times where you are forced to apologize for your true thoughts and feelings, but unless you feel otherwise, you shouldn’t.
There is enough deception in this world; the least you can do is be true to yourself.
12) For saying no
Many people will guilt you to apologize for saying no. But respecting your own limitations is something you definitely don’t need to apologize for. It’s a sign of self-respect. It’s actually worse to say yes to something that you won’t follow through on.
13) For following your dreams
Some people might see your dream as a “waste of time” but that’s up to them.
Never apologize for following your dream because that’s your passion and it makes life worth living.
You’ll never find true happiness unless you live your dreams instead of just dreaming them.
14) For standing your ground
Never say sorry for standing up for your values, morals, ethics, and principles. You should always do what you feel is right.
15) For not knowing the answer to something
Don’t be sorry for not knowing the answer to something. You can’t be perfect and you can’t be a know-it-all.
Being able to admit you don’t know something is a sign of strength and intellectual honesty.
If you admit when you don’t know something then you’ll have more opportunities to grow your knowledge.
As Plato said:
“I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.”
16) For someone else
Every human is responsible for their own actions and behavior. You do not need to apologize for what someone else did even if you feel you’re associated.
17) For a delay in your response
You can’t respond to people immediately. You have a life after all. Never say sorry for delaying your email or message to someone whole you take care of more important things.
18) For not giving into other people’s expectations
You don’t need to worry about what other people expect or think of you. You are your own person and you know what is right for you.
Don’t apologize for other people judging you or slowing you down.
Stand tall and believe in yourself that you’re on the right path – even if other people don’t think so.
19) For your past
Your past is past and there is never you can do about it. Yes, it’s important to learn from your past, but you must also move on.
Everyone makes mistakes, but as long as you’ve learned from them and you’ve forgiven yourself for them, then your past mistakes are certainly something you don’t need to apologize for.
20) Being true to yourself
Never tone yourself down to fit in with other people, or to fit in the stereotypical box society had created for you.
Staying authentic to who you are will not only make yourself happier, but you’ll be a better and more genuine person for those around you as well.
Don’t say sorry for not fitting in when you are born to stand out.
José N. Harris says it best:
“Never apologize for showing your feelings. When you do, you are apologizing for the truth.”
21) For taking some “me-time”
If you need to recharge your batteries with some alone time, then go ahead and do it.
Not only will benefit you but it will benefit those around you as well. Time spent recharging yourself, reflecting, clearing your mind, and practicing gratitude will make you a happier and more peaceful person to spend time with.
Putting yourself first
What’s your number one goal at the moment?
Is it to buy that car you’ve been saving up for?
To finally start that side-hustle that’ll hopefully help you quit your 9-5 one day?
Or to take the leap and finally ask your partner to move in?
Whatever your goals are, there’s a hidden trap in how you set them.
The trap is this:
You’ll only experience genuine life satisfaction when your goals are aligned with your values.
Because when values and goals are aligned, you enjoy the journey much more. And this makes achieving your goals much more likely.
If you find it hard to articulate your deeper life values, I suggest downloading the free values exercise by career coach Jeanette Brown.
It takes only a couple of minutes and will reveal a number of powerful insights about your underlying values.
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