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Motivate Yourself 125: Stop Saying "Sorry"

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If someone bumps into you do YOU say sorry or do they say sorry?

Common sense says being bumped into is nothing to apologise for, but if your self-esteem is low then your default thinking might be, “If I didn’t exist they wouldn’t have bumped into me, so it’s my fault.”
It sounds like an exaggeration, but I know for a fact that some of you do go through that process.

As a therapist, my job is to sit and listen as much as anything else, to give someone a space for them to be themselves, to say what they like about whatever or whomever they like without any fear of judgement or criticism.
So why, after talking about how she felt about something did a recent client say to me “Sorry for rambling like this.”?
After all, that ‘rambling’ is the major part of counselling, that is the actual point of it!

Shopping the other week, I came out of a Shopping Centre and there was a woman 4 or 5 steps behind me and so I held the door open for her, and she sped up. As she got closer she said “Sorry, Thank you” not just Thank you, but “Sorry, Thank you”. But it was my choice to hold the door open for her, it was outside of her control, so why say sorry?

It seems, for some people, “Sorry” is something that slips into sentences out of habit.

At work someone would make a phone call and start the conversation with “Sorry to bother you”

Maybe the majority of people who habitually say sorry, don’t feel any negative effects from it, but you can bet that the ones that are affected by it feel worse and worse about themselves every week that goes by.
So, if you feel a little anxiety in your life or your self esteem is pretty low just check if you find yourself apologising way too often.

If someone bumps into you, there’s a fair chance it was accidental, just acknowledge them and smile.
If you need to interrupt someone from their work, say “Excuse me, can I have a minute?”

There’s a difference between acknowledging being involved in someone being inconvenienced and actually taking the blame for someone being inconvenienced.
Unless you have major influence over the situation and are genuinely responsible for letting someone down then you have nothing to apologise for.
We all need to recognise that.

See if you can eliminate apologising from your vocabulary for a while, unless you genuinely have something to apologise for.
But knocking someone’s drink over or being sick on their cat aside, see how many times you have to stop yourself from saying sorry and let me know how you get on.

Episode List

Episode 138: Keeping Up With The Joneses
Episode 137: The Likeable You
Episode 136: Why It's OK To Be A Loser
Episode 135: The Psychology Of Extremism
Episode 134: Are You A Lobster?
Episode 133: Critical Thinking
Episode 132: There Is Nothing Either Good Or Bad
Episode 131: The For And Against Of Imagination
Episode 130: Loneliness & Social Networks
Episode 129: Letting Go Of The Past
Episode 128: What Is Love?
Episode 127: Procrastination
Ep. 126: Who Were You Before The World Changed You?
Episode 125: Stop Saying "Sorry"
Episode 124: Emotional Contagion
Episode 123: Patience
Episode 122: Building On Your Foundations
Episode 121: Dealing With The Critics
Episode 120: Being Assertive. Just Say No!
Episode 119: Inactivity
Episode 118: Social Functioning & Evolution
Episode 117: Unleash Your Inner Superhero
Episode 116: Goals, Values and Priorities
Episode 115: 10 Tips To A Happier Life
Episode 114: Lies And Confabulation
Episode 113: Confirmation Bias
Episode 112: Are You An Imposter?
Episode 111: What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger
Episode 110: Are New Years Resolutions a good idea?
Episode 109: The African Violet Queen Of Milwaukee
Episode 108: Reframing
Episode 107: Spiders And Behaviourism
Episode 106: Practise Makes Perfect
Episode 105: Fear Of Flying
Episode 100 - 104: Happiness
Episode 99: Body Image And The Media
Episode 98: Evolution and Adaptation
Episode 97: Reflections And Regrets.
Episode 96: Dealing With Fear
Episode 95: Confidence
Episode 94: Enthusiasm
Episode 93: Tips To Relieve Christmas Stress
Episode 92: Dealing With Change
Episode 87 - 91: Self Esteem
Episode 86: Correlation Does Not Imply Causation
Episode 85: The Importance Of Being Lazy
Episode 84: Elephant Chains
Episode 83: Eating Bananas And Setting Goals
Episode 82: Ignoring The Media And Listening To Music
Episode 81: Awakening The Instincts
Episode 80: The Fine Line Between Love And Hate
Episode 79: The Best Medicine
Episode 78: A New Start
Episode 77: Time Distortion
Episode 76: Making Decisions
Episode 75: What's In A Name?
Episode 74: Pushing Ourselves Further
Episode 73: Conformity
Episode 72: Purpose
Episode 71: Perspective
Episode 70: Expectation
Episode 69: The Mind / Body Link
Episode 68: Overcoming Shyness
Episode 67: Mood Boosting
Episode 66: Sabotaging your goals
Episode 65: Self Talk
Episode 64: Money Makes The World Go Round
Episode 63: First Impressions Count
Episode 62: False Belief
Episode 61: Absolutes
Episode 60: The Psychology of feeling calm
Episode 59: Belief
Episode 58: Anchoring Emotions
Episode 57: Negativity and Perspective
Episode 56: Health And Happiness
Episode 55: Imagination vs Reality
Episode 54: Change