Confessions of an Over Apologizer

Sometimes I apologize so much I annoy myself!  Seriously, I apologize for:

  • being early (I have no memory of apologizing for being late!)
  • my house isn't clean enough (EVEN if I just finished cleaning!)
  • for doing more than I am asked to (basically I apologize for going out of my way to make someone else's life easier!)
  • for apologizing too much (yup... I understand the crazy here). 
  • when I give a gift I don't think is perfect enough even though I went out of my way to research the gift, had it imported, paid extra for duties and had to drive to the States to pick it up (yes, this has happened to me more than once, and most recently, this Christmas getting my brothers Christmas gift!)
  • needing a pedicure when I have to expose my feet and they aren't perfectly red and chip-free (my osteopath gives me a funny look every time I apologize to him for this!)  
  • for not giving a cashier the right amount of change ...or for using a $20 for a small purchase and I am the first customer of the day.
  • to make others feel better when THEY are the ones who screwed up!
  • to make a situation more comfortable... nothing like an apology for nothing to keep things less awkward!

This list really could carry on in an embarrassing way, but I think it is clear....I have a problem!
(and I didn't even include my habit of apologizing to furniture when I bump into it!) 

An apology implies I have done something wrong and need someone else to release me of my shame, guilt and feeling like a silly billy (these last two words are the ones we are using around my two year old niece so she doesn't pick up the really 'good' words!).  Yet, when I look at this list, I really don't see actions that require forgiveness.  So, why am I apologizing? 

What am I saying about myself when I am living a life apologizing for each and every move I make?  Am I looking for approval or could it really be that I feel, 

no matter how hard I try, I'm just not good enough?

Just HOW HIGH are these crazy standards I have set for myself?  I would never judge others the way I judge myself; with others I am compassionate,  remind them that perfection is a myth, and give them permission to be happy with who they are.  So why can't I do that for myself?

Instead of apologizing for:

  • being early, I need to just enjoy the fact that I arrive places calm.
  • how clean my house is, I need to just enjoy the fact that I have wonderful people who visit me.
  • going above and beyond, I need to be proud of my attention to detail.
  • apologizing... well, this just needs to stop!
  • a gift I give, simply enjoy telling the story of how it came about.
  • my toes... well, I just need to RELAX!
  • not having the right change, just thank the cashier for the change she gives me.
  • someone else, give them the opportunity to own their actions.
  • the sake of making a situation more comfortable, l need to simply be present with how each situation feels without attempting to control it.

It is time to stop apologizing when there is no apology to be had and accept that even if I make a mistake, stumble or do something completely silly billy... I am enough.