Something that I've always been really terrible for is apologising constantly when I don't need to. There is some sort of well-known joke about people who are the ones to apologise when someone else stands on their foot and I am that person through and through. And it might seem like a slightly odd thing to work on but over the past few years, I've made it a personal mission to stop saying sorry [when I don't need to]. So if you're a fellow over apologiser this post might be just for you.
FOR BEING AN INTROVERT
I'm sure like most people who went through their teenage years in the 00's the term introvert was unheard of. So I always presumed that I was just a little bit weird and felt like I needed to apologise that I didn't love being around people all the time and when people cancelled plans it was a like huge weight had been lifted off my mind. It wasn't until my mid 20's that I started to realise that we all get our energy from different things and some people just don't get energy from being around others and that's ok. It doesn't mean that you don't like people or are strange it's just the true definition of 'different strokes for different folks'. It's ok if you're an introvert and find a more calm way of living is how you thrive.
FOR BEING SELF EMPLOYED
When I became my own boss it wasn't an easy decision or one I really wanted to make but it was one that got proposed to me as the only option. My health was really really poor and I never shared the true extent of how severe it was to anyone but my family. It put me out of work and after realising it wasn't going to be a quick process to get things under control I became my own boss out of necessity. So I could still make a living but on my own terms so that I only had myself to be accountable for as I wasn't in a place that was reliable for other people or function properly in a standard job. I'd always had some sort of work from the age of 16-21 and I knew my unpredictable health situation wouldn't be tolerated and keeping any job would be incredibly hard. Because I don't have an inspiring story about how I became self-employed it's made me feel so so ashamed that I'm lucky enough to work for myself. But apologising for it is so silly, it's taken me a long time to realise that just because I made the choice out of necessity actually being able to make it work financially is something I have done myself and I should be proud of that. Not everyone becomes their own boss because it was the right time and sometimes it is out of a bad situation but those are the stories we're scared to share.
FOR MY RELATIONSHIP
My relationship is something that's very much kept away from the internet so this is something I do in my real life way more than I do online. When my boyfriend and I first started dating we were never that couple that spent every moment together, once a week was always good for us. But ever since our relationship turned into a long distance affair I've felt the need to say sorry for it. Maybe it's because it's not your standard situation that people don't always support it but it's mostly for the following reason. Because my boyfriend is rarely home when he is it means we dedicate all our time to each other and it makes me feel incredibly guilty. And I'm not sure why because I don't see anyone else apologising for spending the weekend with their loved one but because mine happens all at once it wracks me with guilt. Just like anyone, I love my relationship even though it works in something very strange ways I want to nurture it but I feel the constant guilt for it.
FOR NOT DRINKING ALCOHOL
I've always grown up in a world that completely normalised drinking and even now l know very few people who don't enjoy alcohol. On my 20th birthday, I got really severe alcohol poisoning and it wasn't from the amount I had drunk and it's without a doubt one of the scariest things that ever happened to me. And from that point, I very rarely drank because it terrified me and I also started to notice that it had a really bad effect on my stomach and it would instantly make me feel unwell. Now I don't drink and I haven't done in about 4 years [apart from the odd glass of Bucks Fizz at Christmas] and it's something I feel like I constantly need to say sorry for. Not drinking isn't something we should make people ashamed for at all or look them with a strange expression because what's wrong with it? No-one ever kicks up a fuss when someone says that they don't want to smoke and drinking is no different. Just because it's glamorised doesn't mean it's the best thing we can do to our bodies.
FOR NOT HAVING MANY FRIENDS
At school, I was part of quite a large group of girls but ever since that point I've always had a pretty small friend circle and now I can count my good friends on one hand. Tv shows and society has put this really odd pressure on people that if you don't have a tonne of friends then there must be something wrong with you and that's just isn't how life works at all. We all need different things and friendships aren't as easy as we like to make them out to be at all, they're hard and take a lot of effort. Only having a few friends is something that I've always worried that I should be embarrassed about or apologise for like it's something that's my fault but it's completely normal.
FOR MY MENTAL HEALTH
Something I've always been incredibly wary of is sharing my mental health online. Over the past few years I've really struggled with the state of my mind and because we all experience mental health struggles differently it's made me feel like I can't talk about it because it doesn't meet the stereotypical expectations. It's so important to raise awareness but it's even more important to make people feel like they're ok to talk about their MH even if it doesn't look the way that yours does. Downplaying the state of someone's mind is incredibly dangerous and just because someone might look ok from the outside we can truly never know what's happening inside their brain. It's always so painful to see other people with their own mental health struggles mock other people's just because it might not look like what they're dealing with.
FOR BEING MYSELF
Being unapologetic about who you are is very difficult because the outside world constantly wants to pigeon hole people and put us all into neat tidy boxes. And figuring exactly who you are and what you want is difficult enough without feeling like you need to say sorry constantly for what you truly enjoy in life. Even at nearly 27 I feel the need sometimes to say sorry for who I am and what I enjoy but it's so important to remember that we don't need to meet anyone else's expectations but our own and as long as we're not harming other people then we have absolutely no need to say sorry.
What are the things that you've stopped saying sorry for?