littlecolourfulteacher

littlecolourfulteacher

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worthiness + forgiveness

January 27, 2018 , , , , , , , ,

I was thinking about the concept of self-worth today, not in terms of how effectively we set boundaries, but what we actually do to follow through with them. I see myself as a comfortable and developing boundary-setter; I need time to consider a situation, consider what I need versus the greater good, and then decide what I am comfortable with and what my boundaries are. I also line up my decision-making with my values, which, I have found to my equal joy and frustration, are continually evolving. Values are elusive things that are continually shifting ever-so-slightly, constantly becoming more defined as you gain life experience. For example, one of my values is to be kind. This then grew into, “Be kind where possible, and if that is not possible, be accurate and honest.” The addendum to that was, “And if all of that is impossible, then don’t say anything at all.”

I like my values. They have formed me into a compassionate, imaginative, articulate, courageous, and determined woman with a blood-linked desire to grow.

My errant thought today was to do with kindness. I have always made it cost “more” to me when an apology is being made. That is, when I can see there has been genuine suffering and remorse, and someone I value is making an apology, I accept it quickly and readily, almost to take the pain and suffering away. Why? Because, I figure, if they’re sorry enough to make an apology, they must really be sorry about the action that caused it. I also see it as a good mark against my own character, “Oh, there’s Annie, so easy-going, and ready to let things go!”

But the thing is, generally I’m not that girl. I’m not that easy-going girl. Forgiving, playful, and joyful, yes, but forgetful and easy-going? No. I like checking things out. I like understanding the inner workings + motivations of people. It’s what makes me the teacher I am today. It’s my super-power.

But then there’s the shadow-side; it’s also my kryptonite. I think that I can predict good behaviour, and I have an unfailing ability to see the best in people. Sometimes, I have to protect my ready compassion + optimism my fencing people out until I can observe them a little longer. And why should I apologise for my own values? If I forgive, and I DO forgive well, I want it to be because some new understanding has been reached, some border crossed to a new level of connection…or moving on.

And the “AH-HA!” moment I had today?

If I continue to let people easily off the hook just because I feel sorry for them without proper conversation + examination of the issue, then who gets cheapened? Whose boundaries get worn down?

MINE.

I am taking away value from myself by allowing people off the hook the moment they start anything that seems like a compassionate apology. Small everyday moments, no worries. But disagreements or hurts that go against my values? I shouldn’t let those go so easily.

And what will that mean?

I need to be more courageous.

I need to step into the place of discomfort and examine the situation and have the conversation with the person apologising. I need to redefine and realign the relationship and the value. 

And I need to treat myself with the grace and value that I deserve. I need to hold people accountable. Which means engaging in conversation with them about the issue.

The apology need not be a blood-bath. It can be real, informative, and calm. It can be the most connective conversation, transforming two people.

But I need to hold myself with higher integrity in how I accept apologies and how they look alongside my value of compassion + kindness.

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