I’ve been doing this thing and I’ve only recently realized I’m doing it.
And maybe that seems normal because I’m Canadian and I’m just living the stereotype. Maybe apologizing doesn’t seem like a bad thing because it’s good to know when to say you’re sorry because a lot of people don’t. You apologize when you’ve done something wrong, when you’re hurt someone, when you’ve made a mistake or done something that you didn’t know wasn’t right at the time. But I say sorry all the time. That isn’t an exaggeration, if I really think about it I’d have to say that “I’m sorry” is one of the phrases I say most often in a day.
When I brush by someone or if I stand too close. If my foot accidentally touches theirs in line at the bank, if I play a card that works in my favour on a game night. When I’m driving, when I’m talking to my friends, when I’m at work.
I’ve only started noticing I do this for about a year now, but it was my friends who made me aware of it. Not in a bad way, not mean or malicious but noticing something I haven’t been aware of. We have these little quirks that we don’t notice until someone points them out, holds up a mirror to ourselves and says “Why do you do this?” or “You don’t have to do this.”
“You don’t have to apologize.”
That’s what my friends have said to me, or some variation of it when I apologize for something insignificant. Putting a fork in the wrong drawer, for not noticing a closer parking space. I didn’t notice how much I apologized until my friends made me realize it, even now while still learning and becoming aware of how much I apologize I don’t notice but my friends will, and they’ll let me know I’m doing it again, that I don’t need to apologize. And they’re right, I don’t have to apologize for that, for the trivial and insignificant things that happen.
But I do, and I don’t know why.
I think some of it might be my own worry for how I am around people. I never had a lot of friends growing up so I’m guarded a lot of the time with who I meet, if they’ll actually want to stay. Apologizing for my own faux pas, or what I think are my own faults.
But maybe I’m just overthinking, another thing I’m guilty of.
It seems lately that all I write about lately, learning about the faults inside of me, how to fix myself. But that sounds harsh, doesn’t it? Or am I being sensitive?
I have too many questions lately and not enough answers which is just frustrating. Maybe it’s just a quarter-life crisis, I don’t know. Maybe it’s just good to realize these things about yourself, to learn about them, and to work on fixing them.
Because what does it mean to apologize for everything? Am I subconsciously blaming myself for little things I can’t control? Blaming myself for others attitudes and reactions around me? I know I put a lot of pressure on myself, but am I putting so much on myself that it feels like I’m to blame for things? That I ruin things?
Too many thoughts, not enough answers. The usual.
So I guess I have another resolution, nearly three months in but I guess you can never start a resolution too late (unless it’s on December 31st, but maybe you’re just starting early then?) to not apologize so much and to think about the situations I’m in where I do want to say sorry, and why that is.
I might not get a clear answer, one written clearly in front of me but I might reach it somehow. Answers are funny like that.