I’m Sorry

August 31st, 2012   •   1 comment   

Apologizing is about the person who was wronged. It’s about their feelings.

Helpful apology: “I’m sorry. You matter enough to not be treated like that. I’m very sorry.”

Apologizing is not about you. It’s not about your feelings. Don’t ask them to forgive you. Don’t give an explanation for your behavior in the midst of apologizing. Don’t include the word “but” in an apology – ever.

When someone apologizes to you, be a gracious recipient. It’s simple, but it’s not easy to say, “I’m sorry.”

Helpful reply to an apology: “Thank you. I appreciate it.”

Not-helpful reply, that may include any variation of these classic phrases:

  • “You’re always sorry. Actions speak louder than words.”
  • “Whatever.”
  • “Why do you do that?”

If any of those slip out, it’s your turn in the hot seat.

Humility helps.

30 Years

August 21st, 2012   •   Comments Off on 30 Years   

This picture was taken on our Wedding Day 30 years ago, August 21, 1982. We didn’t know then what we know now…we’ve learned about life together.

Here’s a list of just some of the things I have loved about Jeff over our 30 years together…

  • 1.   For 6 months of each year, he reminds me that I’m older.
  • 2.   He taught me that “H” on the stove does not stand for “Hurry”.
  • 3.   He bought me a softball mitt when our kids were small when I told him I felt left out.
  • 4.   He laughs at me when I shoot baskets.
  • 5.   His first gift to me were the albums (the black vinyl kind) for Saturday Night Fever and Grease.
  • 6.   He watched cartoons with our kids when they were small and loved it.
  • 7.   He watches chick flicks with me and let me stop watching violent movies with him.
  • 8.   He thinks I’m funny.
  • 9.   He warms my side of the bed for me when it’s cold outside.
  • 10. He disco danced with me when that used to be cool.
  • 11.  He has great questions about life.
  • 12.  He reads the paper and tells me what interests him.
  • 13.  His friends call him to talk when they need someone who will listen.
  • 14.  He taught me to “embrace the cold” during our crazy winters.
  • 15.  He made up great stories to keep the kids entertained on car trips.
  • 16.  He calls me a lot during the day to just say “Hi”. Now, he texts.
  • 17.  He holds me when I just need to cry.
  • 18.  He stays awake to drive while I sleep.
  • 19.  He worries so that I don’t have to.
  • 20. He cried when our kids left home on the first day of kindergarten and the first year of college.
  • 21.  He changes.
  • 22.  He comes with me to exercise class even if he’s the only guy in the class.
  • 23.  He loves me when I’m not very lovable.
  • 24.  He called the dog “sweetheart” that he also threatened to get rid of.
  • 25.  He knows how to laugh at life and has taken me along for the ride.
  • 26.  He prepares what I need before I think about it for our long bike rides, or about anywhere we go.
  • 27.  He learned to love country music.
  • 28.  He loves people.
  • 29.  He knows which books I’ll love. Recently, Fifty Shades trilogy…Thank you Mr. Guy.
  • 30.  He holds my hand and tells me, “You’re my best friend.”

Looking forward to the years ahead with my best friend….I Love You!

Expectation to Desire

August 13th, 2012   •   Comments Off on Expectation to Desire   

When we accept that others will not always meet our expectations, we can shift them to desires. Knowing that we can’t make others do what we want them to, we choose to change our own perspective.

For too many years in our marriage, I expected that Jeff would want to dance when we went to weddings. He was really very consistent, and I was equally expectant.

We had a consistently crappy time at weddings. Such a waste of how to spend our days!

This picture was sent to us from a wedding we went to this summer. My feet were killing me from too much dancing! I was thrilled!

My desire is to dance and Jeff’s desire is not to dance. When we  understand the desires of another, we can freely choose how to treat them.

Expectations set us up to be disappointed. Desires set us up to be thrilled!


Face Reality

August 5th, 2012   •   Comments Off on Face Reality   

We generally want others to make us feel good. It might be our romantic partner, our kid or parent, our friend, our pastor or our boss, or our politicians. We have expectations.

People are human. People fail. If they would just do what we need them to do, if they would just do the right thing, we’d feel better.

  • It may be reasonable, but is it realistic?
  • Based on who they are right now, and how they’ve acted in the past, is it realistic?
  • Is it possible you have also failed to meet their expectations of you?

Expectations are often unmet. You don’t have a monopoly on pain. We all experience it.

When we don’t face reality, life becomes filled with villains who are out to get us, and superheroes who will rescue us. Whether it’s a nightmare or a fairy tale, it’s an illusion.

We get so lost in illusions of what we want to be true, we can’t tell what is true. We get lost.

Confused or not, we still fight reality: What’s wrong with me expecting this? So, I’m supposed to just give up? I have to just put up with this? 

People are generally pissed at suggestions of reality. Regardless, here’s what it means to face reality.

  • Looking at reality does not mean giving up hope. It’s where you find hope in what you can change…and not trying to change others.
  • Looking at reality does not mean having no expectations. It’s where you have realistic expectations…and accept others where they’re at.
  • Looking at reality does not mean being stuck as a doormat. It’s when you decide to stop letting others wipe their feet on you…and stop blaming them for doing so.