October 2014 archive

Apology Languages

 

apology (This post is from a workshop that I led for married couples based on “The Five Languages of Apology” shown to the left, by Gary Chapman and Jennifer Thomas. I highly recommend this book! A lot of the information below is from this book. “The Five Love Languages“, which I wrote about on a previous post, is another great read!)

According to the old sappy move Love Story, “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” Err…What?? I don’t think so! I believe that love means saying you’re sorry over and over again. However, to be effective, we need to learn the language of apology that our spouse speaks.

 

To find out your Apology Language, click here to take the profile.

Language #1: Expressing Regret “I’m truly sorry”

  • Most people want a sincere apology—what does sincere look like to you?
  • Expressing regret is the emotional aspect of an apology—what pain did it cause you to have?
  • Check on your body language
  • Avoid the “but…” (When you apologize with a ‘but’ it’s not a real apology)
  • Don’t apologize to manipulate
  • Regret focuses on dealing with one’s own behavior and expressing empathy for the one you have hurt
  • Write a letter of apology

Sample statements of regret:

  • “I really feel bad that I disappointed you.   I should have been more thoughtful. I hate that I caused you so much pain.”
  • “I’m sorry I violated your trust. I know I’ve put some walls up now in our relationship, but I don’t want them to be there. I know it might take you awhile to trust me again.”

Language #2: Accepting Responsibility “I know I was wrong”

  • Admitting wrongdoing is tied to self-worth
  • It’s not my fault: Learn to admit your mistakes
  • Agree/Disagree—“I agree that I have a right to feel hurt and angry. I don’t choose these feelings, they just happen. I disagree with the idea that because of these hurt feelings, I have the right to hurt someone else.
  • “All of us make mistakes. But the only mistake that will destroy you is the one you are unwilling to admit.”

Sample statements of accepting responsibility:

  1. “I know what I did was wrong. I know I could make excuses, but there aren’t any. The truth is I was being selfish.”
  2. “I repeated a mistake that I know we have already talked about. I messed up and I know it’s my fault.”

Language #3: Making Restitution “What can I do to make it right?”

  • Paying your debt to the one you have wronged
  • Many ask, “How can they love me and do that?”
  • “The heart of restitution is reassuring your spouse that you genuinely love him/her. It is essential to express restitution in their love language.” What’s your language?

o   Five love languages (Check out my previous post on love languages here)

  • Words of Affirmation
  • Acts of Service
  • Receiving Gifts
  • Quality Time
  • Physical Touch

Sample statements of making restitution:

  1. “Is there anything I can do to make up for what I’ve done?”
  2. “I know I hurt you deeply and I want to make up for it in some way. What would you like me to do?”

Language #4: Genuinely Repenting “I’ll try not to do that again”

  • Repentance—“to turn around” or “to change one’s mind”
  • It begins with an expression of intent to change
  • Important!! Even though the person said that they intend to change, we need to remember no one is perfect. Many times, spouses fail and it takes multiple attempts.
  • The idea that change is only in order when we do something morally wrong is erroneous. A healthy marriage might need change to create harmony.
  • A plan for change (be specific and share with your spouse)
  • Implement the plan and put it in writing
  • If you fail, acknowledge the failure before the offended spouse confronts you

Sample statements of genuine repentance:

  1. “How could I say that in another way that would not come across as critical?”
  2. “I really want to change to make us happier. I know it’s not going to be perfect, but maybe you could help me when I revert to my old ways. We could have a code word that you could say to help me.”

Language #5: Requesting Forgiveness “Will you please forgive me?”

Why seek forgiveness?

  • It indicates that you want the relationship restored
  • It shows you realize you have done wrong
  • It shows you are putting the future of the relationship in the others hands

Why is it so hard?

  • Requesting forgiveness can be difficult—fear of losing control
  • Fear of rejection
  • Fear of failure

Remember forgiveness is a choice and it might take time

Why is it hard to forgive?

  • It may require the forgiver to give up the quest for justice
  • The forgiver may need to forgive consequences that are long-lasting
  • The forgiver may have difficulty if the offense is repeated or major

Be patient—speak their love language and try to change the behavior

Sample statements of requesting forgiveness

  1. “I’m sorry for the way I spoke to you. It was mean and harsh and I shouldn’t have done that. Will you please forgive me?”
  2. “I didn’t mean to hurt you, but I obviously did. I was trying to be fun, but I know my actions were wrong. I’m going to try not to do it again. Will you please forgive me?”

A few things to keep in mind:
o   Husbands and wives usually speak different apology languages
o   You can have more than one apology language
o   The more languages you use in your apology, the more effective it is

Ask yourself…
o   What do I expect the person to say or do?
o   What hurts me most about this situation?
o   What language is most important when I apologize?

Why don’t people apologize?
o   It’s not worth the effort
o   It was his/her fault
o   Low self esteem

Verses on forgiveness:
o   Ephesians 4:32
o   1 John 1:9
o   Romans 3:23
o   Matthew 6:14-15
o   Luke 6:36-37

Believe me, apologizing is not an easy task. I constantly fight my stubborn pride when it comes to saying I’m sorry and admitting that I’m wrong, but in the end, the peace and resolution that it brings is always worth it in the end.

Do you have any apology tips? Please share below in the comments!

Paris Journal #2

 

France map

Here’s another look into my life when I was living in Paris.  Just another awkward moment while living abroad…

September 28, 2004

Yesterday morning was funny when I went for my doctor’s appointment to get my Carte de Séjour (the visa that allowed me to stay in Paris for a year.)  I had to have an X-ray taken for some odd reason in order to be deemed healthy to live here.  So, I was asked to take off everything from the waist up.  Not too much of a problem, but then the nurse asked me to follow her to the X-ray room…without a gown!  So there I was, fully exposed from the waist up, and I had to just walk on through the office and another room to get to the machine!  A male doctor is in there just staring at me–how awkward!  I guess the gowns that you get in the states don’t exist here in good ole’ Paris!  Note to self:  Don’t wear tight pants to the doctor next time.  I was just thankful I hadn’t worn a dress!  Quelle horreur!!

Hopefully my misfortune will help another poor soul when they find themselves living abroad in France or at least give you something to laugh about!  And I must add, in France, boobs are boobs.  They’re just another beautiful part of the body and they’re everywhere.  They’re in paintings, statues, and exposed on the beaches. Every woman has them and no one cares if they see them. So, no worries!

Noonday Collection

 

I have to share my lovely jewelry pieces I ordered at a Noonday party that I attended last weekend.  If you haven’t heard of Noonday Collection…well then, you need to go right now and check out their website! The products are absolutely gorgeous, well-made, and have an incredible story behind them. This honorable company’s mission is to “create economic opportunity for the vulnerable.” They have 28 artisan groups in more than ten countries where they create sustainable jobs. They also provide the artisans with no-interest loans, emergency assistance and scholarship opportunities. A portion of the sales from the show I attended will go towards my friends adoption. In fact, that’s how Noonday was started. The founder, Jessica Honegger, hosted the first trunk show as a fundraiser to adopt her third child from Rwanda. The response was incredible and Noonday was born.

I’m in love with my new pieces! They are very versatile and can easily be worn with other pieces that I own. The Helena necklace (top) is made in India where Noonday provides economic opportunity for over 400 families. The Bethe Rope necklace (bottom) was made with upcycled metal and artillery, remnants of the war in Ethiopia. Many of the women who make this top-selling necklace are HIV positive. I encourage you to check out Noonday and consider hosting a party for friends and family.  They just came out with their Winter Collection in time for the holidays!

noonday1

noonday2

noonday3

noonday4The Helena necklace is on top and the Bethe Rope necklace I wrapped around 3 times underneath it.  Bethe Rope is 78″ in length, so you can wear it long or wrap it like I did.  I obviously love the layered look!

What are your favorite Noonday pieces?