Accountability is something I'm very passionate about, and there's something so admirable to me about people who can recognize when they've done wrong. And ALSO, have the guts to not only admit it, but say they're sorry about it.
I've heard every excuse in the book for why people feel they shouldn't say sorry.
-They're too prideful
-They didn't do anything wrong
-They're not saying sorry first
The list goes on.
And don't get me wrong, because I've been there! I've used a few of these excuses myself from time to time over the years, but that was when I was an immature kid. Even still, it can be hard to say sorry, even when you really want to, because it leaves you feeling stupid. Admitting you're wrong isn't always easy. I understand that.
On the flip side, I feel like we all have to grow up at some point. I've done a lot of self-reflecting over the past five years, and I've grown to a place where I can recognize when I'm doing something that isn't right. I'm not perfect, but I am self-aware. It's very important to be self-aware and recognize when you're being unreasonable. Otherwise, you'll run that "I didn't do anything wrong" excuse into the ground until the day you die! And we ALL do things that are wrong, because we're human. You're not perfect and you're not above anyone else. I can't stand when people say they're never wrong. Because sorry to break it to you, but yes, you are.
The way I've taught myself to be self-aware is by analyzing situations from other people's point of view.
It can be easy to say you've done nothing wrong or that you're not saying sorry first when you're only thinking about yourself.
So I put myself in the other person's shoes, and I really think long and hard about how they might've felt when I did or said whatever I did or said. I take the entire situation into consideration as well, because every situation is different. And then I think about how I might've felt if the tables were turned! I've also learned to recognize that I'm different from other people and what might not hurt me could hurt them. I take into consideration what is reasonable in the grand scheme of things as well! Because I'm not saying you have to apologize every single time you hurt someone's feelings. I wholeheartedly believe that sometimes, people deserve to get their feelings hurt! 100%. BUT, it depends on the context of the situation.
After analyzing an entire situation from top to bottom, if I come out on the other side feeling like, "Okay...maybe I shouldn't have said that to _________. After all, they didn't actually do anything that warranted that." then I know it's time for me to apologize. And that's what I do! Saying sorry has come to be very easy to me now. I'm also much better at seeing past "pride" and "feeling stupid" now, because those are only temporary states of mind. It's not worth ruining a relationship with someone I actually care about. It's also not worth being a terrible person. I'd much rather feel stupid for a few minutes than be branded as a horrible person who thinks they're perfect and can never apologize.
Self-awareness and being able to apologize when I'm wrong has ALSO made it easier to see when someone else is being unreasonable and when THEY need to apologize and hold themselves accountable. If I put myself in someone else's shoes and can find absolutely no solid reason that actually makes sense as to why they're mad at me, I know that's a personal problem that they have to fix on their own - because yeah, sadly, there's people out there who can make you feel like you've done something to them when you absolutely haven't.
My point in saying all of this, is to encourage everyone to think about themselves a little less and think about how not saying sorry to people can leave them feeling. I love saying sorry to people I've hurt, because even though I may feel weird about admitting that I'm wrong, it feels good going to bed every night knowing that I'm still a good, unselfish person at the end of the day.
So to anyone reading this, if you're in a quarrel with anyone in your life, revisit that situation and think about how you could've handled it differently. And if you feel like you should apologize....then do it. And MEAN it. It only makes you a better person.