Apologising is a good start when we recognise that we have made a mistake. Do you also apologise though when you have not? Do you say ‘I’m sorry’ all the time? There are five reasons we might start apologising and saying ‘I’m sorry…’
Type 1: Apologising for things that are, in fact, not in our control, such as, the weather, a delayed flight, someone elses’ behaviour…
Type 2: Apologising for standing out or shining.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson
Type 3: Apologising because of a lack of self-respect.
Type 4: Those times when we say or do something that gives another sorrow – it may well be appropriate for us to apologize in these instances.
Type 5: When we know we have made a mistake.
In the case of type 4 or 5, what is important is our intention (our motivation behind our words). The right motivation comes when we realize we have made a mistake and are willing to learn from it. Then when we say “I’m sorry. I won’t do it again” we mean it. The other person is also able to recognise the genuineness of our apology.
We don’t make the same mistake twice because we have learnt something, become wiser and moved on. It is important that we learn from our mistakes, otherwise we get stuck in regret and we try to turn the clock back to where it was before, even though we know that it isn’t possible to turn time anti-clockwise. When we learn from our mistakes, however, we turn them into something beneficial and this enables us to let go and move forward.