Counseling

Five Elements Of An Apology

Five Elements Of An Apology

Many times we feel that we have fully apologized to another person about how we have offended or wronged them. But the offended person may want to hear more than just the two words “I’m sorry.” They may have heard that apology several times from the same person and been betrayed or disappointed again by the same actions or words. So the simple “I’m sorry” can seem empty and meaningless. Use these five elements of a sincere apology and then put these elements into action to win a person’s trust back.

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Conflict and Positive Intent

One of the concepts from the business world that transfers well to struggling couples is assuming positive intent. Many times couples come in experiencing gridlock in communications and conflict resolution. They are quick to become defensive and assume their partner is always trying to “win or be right.” After weeks, months or years of functioning this way, the environment becomes very hostile and it can be hard to remember the team commitment once made at the alter. This concept is not a novel one and simply implores giving others the benefit of the doubt. This combined with a little empathy can go a long way. 

The first step in assuming positive intent is to create self-awareness around what it is your partner is doing or saying that is bothersome. Identify the trigger and acknowledge your reactive emotion. Then, step back, and ask yourself, “Is that in my partner’s nature to try to frustrate me?” Then allow yourself to step in their shoes for a moment and see the situation from their perspective. More often than not your partner’s behavior is not an attack on you or your relationship. It is simply self-preservation either emotionally, mentally or physically. Then remind yourself that at their best, your partner has your back and would never intentionally harm you. Overall, extend grace to your partner, acknowledge how they feel, and work towards fostering “we is more important than you or me” in your relationship.

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Anti-Thought

One of the things I enjoy most about meditation is the idea of anti-thought. When I first heard this phrase it struck me a little odd.  I’ve always heard and understood meditation to be this place of reflection, to organize thought or an Eastern approach to finding your Chi. As I began to embrace meditation as a form of anti-thought I found myself enjoying the process and looking forward to my next meditation session. 

The developers at Headspacehave created a wonderful app to help you explore the value of anti-thought.  A seemingly endless library of guided and unguided meditation sessions will help you to learn to allow thoughts to pass by as if they were cars whizzing by in traffic. The sessions focus on a variety of topics from stress and anxiety to grief and relationships teaching you to acknowledge your positive and negative thoughts experience their emotional connection and then allow them to pass by. 

If you have a busy life and find yourself feeling overwhelmed by tasks and thoughts try take a few minutes to find the right headspace.  

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