Do You Suffer From Over-Apologizing?

Once upon a time, I sold radio ads for a living. Twice actually. And both times I sucked. Majorly.

Me: Here’s a list of sponsorship packages I think would really be great for you. 

[Client hesitating for .3 seconds] 

Me: Everything’s negotiable. Nevermind.  I’ll show myself out.

Unfortunately, it translates to my personal life as well (and thank you, Jesus that I’m no longer a saleswoman.)

I’m an over-apologizer. I say sorry all the time and in the most ridiculous situations and so do you. WHY? Why do we do this?

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When someone does something really nice for me…instead of feeling JUST honored, loved, etc., I also feel a teensy bit guilty…and even in my head I know I would never admit to not thinking I’m worthy of receiving unexpected kindness, but maybe on some level I believe it a tiny bit as I allow those stupid other feelings in? 

In our Mother of the Year Facebook group, Abby shared a heart-breaking story!

Abby shared, “While out to lunch today, I spotted a mama peacefully watching her kids play in the play area. Her son appeared to have some form of special needs, but it wasn't very obvious until they were preparing to leave and he became combative. I watched him try to kick and hit her, pour a drink on her and then the floor...all while she calmly, lovingly, and assertively put on his shoes and corralled his younger sibling. There didn't appear to be anything I could have helped with, or I would have. So I took a cue from the things I have learned from some of you experienced in this area and stopped her before she left for a pat on the back and a "You're doing a great job, Mom!" And do you know what this woman did? She said, "I'm sorry".

I'm sorry!?!

She promptly left, but if I could stand face to face with her again, I would grab her by the shoulders and tell her to never EVER apologize for this EVER again. I would tell her that she is amazing, and she's handling this motherhood thing like a boss. And then I would apologize to her on behalf of anyone who has ever made her believe she has something to be sorry for.

And to you, Mama reading this're amazing, and you're handling this motherhood thing like a boss! Thank you all for teaching me so much through this community ❤”

Do you think we can change our mindset on this?


Let’s Retrain Our Brains: 

  • Reframe the situation: Sorry I’m late! Sorry, I should be able to do this by myself! Sorry, I didn’t think anyone was noticing! Sorry, I just needed some time away from the kids! Sorry, I know I’m hard to deal with sometimes! Instead, what if we…

  • Voice our gratitude: Thank you for waiting for me! Thank you for helping me! Thank you for seeing me! Thank you for meeting my needs! Thank you for loving me well! It’s a heck of a lot better to be on the receiving end of gratitude instead of negativity! 

  • Let yourself be seen: I mean, really seen. Seen and known for who you really are. It’s scary and you feel vulnerable, because sometimes people suck and they let you down bigtime. But if you find your crew, don’t feel bad about being who you are and asking for help.  


I think we can! Join me in committing to feeling unapologetic for voicing our needs, communicating our expectations, and living our lives with purpose and passion! Are you in? We can't change it all at once, but what's ONE THING you can stop apologizing for TODAY?

Lisa GraftComment