Monday, December 1

Making Amends, Better Than Apologies...... 12/1/14

Innkeeper's Note:  Amends. Far superior to apologies.  Best way to restore fractured rela-tionships.  I wrote the following three-and-a-half-years ago.  Still a good subject.  Let me know your thoughts.  Here it is: 

     Amends is a source for emotional and psychological relief,  ridding us from unnecessary guilt. 

      It's rewarding, having the
support of caring friends and family members.  I enjoy growth when I embrace the difficult parts of life.  Such as making things right with someone I offended.

     Earlier today, I met with a friend I've known for 30+ years.  I learned of issues requiring mending with his wife.  She's held a grudge for more than fifteen years.  I had no idea. I like
Goethe's perspective:

     I scrounged up the courage. We discussed the issue while having lunch.  I will take steps, leaving the outcome is in God's hands.  I've already gunked up the works.

Being Responsible
     Not only do I take responsibility, I clean my side of the street.  This is true even if I perceive my part is only one percent of the problem.  I take ownership and clean that portion, not minding that the other person's contribution.  This is making amends.  It does wonders to ease a stormy situation and a guilty soul.
      The other per-son's response is irrelevant.  Expect-ing a positive reaction sets up disappointment.

      I do not make amends for the other person's sake.  I do them for mine.  It frees me from guilt.  There is a question I need to ask when correcting a wrong.  I ask, "What do I need to do to make this right?"

   To their reply I heed.  If possible, I do their bidding.  In most causes, taking these steps, fessing up to my part and doing what they ask strengthens the relationship.  Like the pottery pictured above, the mending where the relationship was fractured actually enhances it.  The offended and the offender have a stronger relationship. There's more authenticity, more honest communication and understanding of each other.

     Having gone through this process adds beauty to the relationship.  We are beyond surface-level relating. Old wounds are not allowed to fester.  Our friendship is far greater than the title we give those following us on Facebook.

     Weathering the adversity between us, allows the relationship to grow.  We have stood for ourselves (demonstrating our true values, through our corrective behavior) while not standing against our fellows.  Integrity is ours.

      One caveat. We don't take action that may cause injury to the person approached or others. "Others" includes us.  Sometimes indirect amends through changed behavior serves us best.  This is where feedback from my Balcony People gives perspective.

Being Gentle Towards Myself, When I Goof
       It's crucial not avoiding what I can can, to right a situation, to spare personal discomfort.  That only adds guilt, stymies the healing.  When I see an area needing growth, I don't berate myself. (For more about being gentle towards ourselves, read here.)   Insight simply means I'm getting healthier.  I see improvements I was unable to see before.

       Wow, life is good.  I'm thankful for growth in an area that was damaged as a child.  As a kid, it was frowned upon to admit mistakes.  I was punished when admitting errors.

        I'm thankful, knowing now, that I am not what I do or don't do.  I'm loved by God and friends because of who I am, faults included.  I can be me.  Being courteous, considerate, kind and loving are the qualities I want to be, not just towards others, but also towards myself.

How About You? 
What is your story about making amends with someone?  I'd love hearing your experience with today's subject. 

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Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.