Owning, or admitting, when we have done something or said something that has hurt someone else is one of the most powerful things we can do. For many of us, however, it is counter intuitive, meaning it feels as though we will loose credibility or that people will not like us anymore if we own our missteps. Whether it is a conscious thought or an unconscious reaction, usually our first impulse is to defend ourselves, blame someone else or simply minimize the “severity” of what we said or did by claiming “it’s no big deal” or suggesting that they shouldn’t feel “so bad” about it. Any of the above only serve to cause the recipient of our deed to feel unheard, unseen or at the very least misunderstood.
Contrary to popular belief, owning our stuff helps the other person feel safe and as you all know (and if you don’t read my first blog about attachment) feeling safe is at the core of attachment and bonds us together. Imagine for a moment that the last person who hurt your feelings or did something that pissed you off looked into your eyes and said, “I am so, so sorry.” And now, as your imagining that, notice your body……aren’t you just melting? That is the power of owning.
So next time you said something or did something that upset or hurt someone, try owning it and see what happens. You will be surprised at the response you’ll get!