You may have caught Rashana A. Hooks brutally honest article, Things You Should Never Apologize For. Still, I suspect that many of you still have your bags packed and ready to go for your daily guilt trip and are undeservingly beating yourselves up for all the things that make you fierce and fabulous. Apologies are used for the recognition and remorse of a wrongdoing, but more often than not, you’re only living your life the best way you know how, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Here are 10 more things that you can save your apologies for:
1. Being educated/Conscious of grammar.
I’ve noticed how easily offended people become when I correct them on a fact that they’ve quoted incorrectly or point out that they’ve used the wrong “you’re” in a Facebook status update. Instantly, I’m attacked with loaded gratitude like, “Thank you, grammar police.” In my opinion, friends don’t let friends stay confident in ignorance. You can be helpful without being insulting. While there’s certainly a time and place to be more laid back and relaxed with your language, you’ll be thanking me and my thesaurus before you print out a thousand business cards labeled, “Thank you for you’re business.” (Microsoft Word weeps.)
2. Telling the pure, unadulterated truth.
There are two types of people: people that come to you with their drama because they truly want honest feedback on how to remedy their situation and people who simply want you to co-sign foolishness. Prime example is that friend you have that complains about how unhappy she is in a relationship with a trifling man and wants you to assist her in bashing him, but as soon as he does one “good thing” like babysit his kids, she suddenly wants you to sing backup on “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow.” Just because someone would prefer to hear a beautiful lie instead of the ugly truth, doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to offer them. Real friends keep it real.
3. Saying “No.”
Most of us as women would like to make sure everyone is comfortable and happy and that everything is taken care of. For example, whenever I’m out for a night on the town with friends, even though we are all adults, I still make it my personal responsibility to know how everyone is getting home at the end of the night. I don’t like to leave anyone stranded or taking public transportation alone at night. But sometimes I have to remind myself that these are my friends and not my children, and if I don’t want to play chauffeur at night simply because I’m tired or don’t feel like driving across the city in the wee hours of the morning, that’s OKAY. You don’t owe anyone an explanation or a reason when you just don’t feel like doing something sometimes, but at the same time, don’t be selfish to people who have hooked you up in the past.
4. Not liking someone.
There are almost 7 billion people on this Earth and you’ll be lucky if you genuinely like at least 20 of them that you aren’t obligated to. Some of them are obnoxious, condescending and then some of them you’ll just plain dislike for no particular reason. Why try to force yourself to get along with people whom you just don’t mesh well with when there are at least a few people who don’t require nearly as much of your energy for you to be comfortable and, dare I say it, enjoy being around. So stop beating yourself up over people that rub you the wrong way and don’t force it–start embracing the ones that get it right.
5. Relationship gone wrong.
Like #5, sometimes there’s no one to blame, although when coming out of a relationship many of us would like to play victim. The honest truth is that sometimes it’s just a
case of two people with conflicting personalities. It doesn’t mean that you are bad people or that one person always caused it; it just means that you’re a bad combination. Don’t waste the time trying to over-analyze his faults, accept your own flaws and find someone who compliments you, just as you are.
6. Relationship gone right.
I’m guilty of this. If you’re lucky, you’ll get in a relationship that’s going so well that you’ll start to find yourself constantly looking over your shoulder for trouble. Especially when you’re having girl talk with your besties that takes a left turn into a man-bashing session. Amongst all the talk of cheating, lying and laziness you may feel obligated to throw out some kind of fault that your guy has, only, well, you actually enjoy the relationship you’re in. Never allow your girlies to make you feel guilty about the good thing you have going. You don’t have to douse the flames of a hot love life and hide your happiness about it just because everyone else’s might be on the rocks.
7. Being tired.
It’s Friday night and although you’ve fought through the work week to get to Happy Hour and a night of partying with your pals, you may be a bit taken back the first time you see a yawn escape from your throat…while you’re in the club. It doesn’t mean you’re old and it doesn’t mean you can’t hang: it just means you’re tired. There’s no law that says because you’re twenty-ish it is your duty to be in the club every weekend. It’s okay to look forward to the weekend even if it’s for nothing more than your fuzzy slippers and a marathon of Braxton Family Values.
8. Expressing your opinion.
As a woman you can find yourself in many situations that you have strong opinions about or where your opinion may be the unpopular one. As a black woman, you may find yourself struggling with how to express these opinions without offending anyone or without being labeled the stereo-typical “angry-neck-twirling-black-woman.” There’s a way to be respectful and still be assertive about the point you want to make without scaring anyone. But never stifle what you have to say just to avoid living up to someone’s ignorant belief system. You could be speaking up for a multitude of women who didn’t have the courage to do so.
9. Your taste.
Every time I see a House of Dereon item in all of its leopard print and gold lamé glory, a piece of me dies inside. But who am I to turn my nose up at the taste of Ms. Tina and Beyoncé
Knowles? You like what you like, and although it may not be on the “Hot” side of Vogue’s latest “Hot or Not” list, it doesn’t mean that it’s not stylish or attractive to somebody, especially if YOU love the way it looks.
10. The actions of others.
In high school I had a best friend who let’s just say was a lot more sexually experienced than I was and unfortunately this made her the subject of many vicious rumors.
While many catty classmates often asked me how I could hang out with her and the rest I’m sure just assumed I engaged in the same type of behavior, I never felt the need to explain myself. While I made every effort as a friend to defend her name, I also didn’t apologize for any of the things she had done. Birds of a feather often flock together, but I’m not a bird, and anyone who chooses to judge me based on the actions of people who are not me isn’t worth entertaining.
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