I'm Sorry and Thank You

These two simple expressions can be the salve for healing and opening gateways to growth and well-being. I say can be, only if they are delivered from the heart. I describe expressions from the heart in my stories below. The same words offered in the grip of reaction mean nothing and can be harmful.

Reactive apologies and appreciations are common and might be most familiar to you. Reactive expressions do not take responsibility. Reactive responses defend. Reactive responses hijack healing words. Reactive responses catalyze more reactions. As you grasp the common use of I'm sorry and thank you, pause, take a breath and lift your chest. Open your heart to the real meaning and use of these profound words.

Within weeks apart I received a heart-felt "I'm sorry," and a heart-opening "thank-you." In both situations I knew the words were offered from the heart - my body heart told me so. There was no jangle or ripple in the exchange. The offering was clean, clear, and exacting in the moment. My body released and smiled. You might ask, what is a body smile? It feels like a body-buoy; and you can imagine your face smile imprinted on your heart, belly, hands and legs.

My father said "I'm sorry" to me after I "lost it." I did. And, I'm not proud of it. For the fourth time this year, he excavated a subject involving me and my siblings. Sparing you the content of the story, the crux of the matter for me, was the grizzle of a parent/child wound: never doing enough (which of course leads to never being enough.) He was holding on to his first impulse of a situation without realizing the unfolding of events. He wanted an appreciation for a monetary gain from the sale of land. I did not speak to him directly about the sale by thanking him over the phone; he doesn't hear well. I opted for a written thank you note. For whatever reason, he believed only one child properly thanked him. In my tirade, and I admit to raising my voice several octaves. Very hurt and frustrated, I said, I thank you for giving me birth! (the most precious gift of all.) When my father fully experienced my anger response and digested reality, he softened. He could only apologize. He witnessed my pain and felt his. Nothing mattered more to him than our connection. He told me so. He never meant to hurt me. I felt the healing salve of his words; I saw the love in his eyes. I heard the essence of I'm sorry, and years of hurt washed away. No longer is there any not-enough-ness between us.

Two weeks later my beloved said, "thank you." Now, matters between partners can be the most tricky. We call forth relationships that offer where we most want and need to grow. In the past, when my partner has said thank you, I would bristle with tension at being "right." In fact, I would get angry rather than rejoice with his appreciation. Weird, huh? Well, whether those exchanges were my unwillingness to receive, or his disingenuous thank you, or a combination, I don't know. This exchange was totally different. In this situation, my perception felt crystal clear and my determination to connect was unwavering. When I revealed the truth of our circumstances from the desire to reveal, connect and ask for what I want, the gesture was easy and simple. He heard me. I was seen. I was heard. (Oh, I already said that... see how important for me to be heard.) Behaviors were acknowledged. The perspective grew. He said, "thank you." And, I heard those precise profound words like never before. The weight on my shoulders evaporated; my breath slowed and deepened. A different release coursed through my body. Through meeting me - he was able to appreciate me and I was able to experience the healing balm of thank you.

Money stuff is ripe for I'm sorry and thank you. As the world continues to churn and burn with economic, political, social and environmental issues, the power of money plays a big role in perpetuating harm. While these broad forces may feel like a tsunami, and perhaps you may believe that your individual actions have little influence, I encourage you to look again. When we examine our behaviors with money and the situations that cause suffering, an opportunity may surface to genuinely express, I'm sorry, thank you, or both.

Take a tour of your present money life, sense your body and bring to mind your relationships, your agreements, your commitments... what is today's reality? What sensations do you notice? (If you need assistance connecting to your body, try this month's 5 Minute TRY It: Wake-Up Your Body.) Do you want to express I'm sorry or thank you? Don't hesitate. Do it now.

Juicing in the healing power of authentic expression,
Be Moved...
From a new writing class, here's what a 10-minute prompt inspired:

What have I found...

Is that there is always something new and interesting to explore and learn in life

Is that those who are interested are very interesting

Is that when my spirits are free and lively, it's infectious on those around me

Is that sometimes no matter how hard I try, it's not going to happen

Is that talking can be a huge barrier to deep connection

Is that just because it is really easy for me doesn't mean that it is easy for another

Is that when I pause, breathe, and wonder, answers emerge like the sun shines on a cloudless sky

Is that drinking water can satisfy most hunger surges

Is that I really don't like to take care of machinery and much prefer simple easy tools

Is that I prefer to view art and masterpieces in museums and prefer to enjoy homemade family creations in my home

Is that the sooner I let go of my opinion and need to be right, the more fun life becomes

Is that I can shift my mood, just by being open to something different

Is that people are the same, really - and we create differences just because we are scared

Is that everyone just wants to be seen, heard and loved

Is that life is precious and many of us waste the opportunity

Is that there are so many perspectives and everyone is right

Is that if motivation is clear and for the benefit of all, then the results will also be what is needed; conversely, if motivation centers solely on personal gain, then the results will reflect that in the problematic experience that unfolds

Is that I could write the same thing in many lines