After hearing Brene’s podcast with Harriet Lerner on Apologizing I was reminded of some important truths:
- Those who’ve done the most damage often are the least able to apologize.
- Those who do a lot of harm do so because they come from a place of their own deep shame.
- The non-apologizers walk along a tight rope above a huge canyon of low self esteem.
- Arrogance is really low self esteem.
- When we speak our truth it is done to hear our own truth from our own voice, saying it validates what’s happened. No need to expect the apology to validate our pain.
- Those who don’t apologize- it doesn’t have anything to do with love for you. It is all to do with the size and strength of their own platform of self worth.
- Sometimes people won’t apologize because if they do, they’ll collapse into shame so deeply that they can’t see themselves out.
- Being able to apologize for own your part in the situation shows a healthy self esteem, it comes from a place of integrity, and that you value the relationship.
Being a Good Listener
- Notice when we are listening in defensive mode. This is manifested by listening for the inaccuracies or what you don’t agree with. These can be addressed at another time.
- Listen to understand. Listen for what is in common or for the ESSENCE of what is being said.
- Being a good listener is also knowing when it is a good time for you to be at your best to listen well. And it’s ok to set up a time when and a place where you can be more engaged and open with the conversation.
- Defensiveness is the arch enemy of listening and connecting.
- Listening to someone tell us we’ve hurt them is hard to do. It is easier when we focus on the injured party’s pain and care more about them and their healing in that moment over our own stuff.
- Stay curious.
- Listening means you stop talking, defending, excusing. Just listen and breathe.
Apologizing gives us three gifts
- Gift to the hurt party – it validates their wounds and shows respect
- Gift to self – being vulnerable requires courage. Apologizing sincerely improves own self esteem and builds our own integrity
- Gift to the relationship – shows we value the relationship more than being ‘right’.
Lisa B Hilton, CTRC, of Hilton Coaching & Consulting, is a Certified Trauma Recovery Coach and supports adult survivors of childhood traumas and neglect. Her focus is walking with the client in their healing journey supporting the transformation of travesty into triumph.