Are you the mea culpa type? Do you apologize too quickly?
If you are in the habit of saying sorry at the drop of a hat then you may just have the dreaded Mea Culpa Syndrome.
And if you do fall into that category, you will surely be familiar with that self-recriminating “I Blame Myself” attitude.
But just to confirm take a look at the following signs that should help you to work out if you have -
The Mea Culpa personality:
- You are too quick to take the blame.
- You are too quick to apologize and
- Rather than fan the flames of any argument you take full responsibility for the problem.
- You focus on your own shortcomings rather than on the other person’s faults
People with this type of attitude are much too quick to concentrate on their own failings. Not only that; they tend to be guilt-ridden and are likely to accept responsibility for everything that goes wrong in their relationships.
Is that you? Do you recognize yourself?
Try to kick the Mea Culpa habit
If you make a habit of taking the blame it may end the argument sooner but it will only defer the problem in the short term. In the long run it will create more problems in your relationship than you bargained for.
Think about it carefully and you will see that this type of approach will never work to your advantage. It will only serve to weaken the foundations of your relationship.
Any worthwhile or successful relationship should be an equal partnership with a lot of give and take from both sides. It should never be a power play where one side calls the tune and the other takes orders.
If you make a habit of putting yourself down, your partner will expect you to take the blame every time and apologise when you have a disagreement.
So what should you do?
The Mea Culpa Trap
Firstly you need to recognize that you have fallen into the mea culpa trap. And having accepted that, you need to break the cycle by taking a firmer stand.
- Prepare yourself mentally beforehand by determining what your strengths are. Then use them to bolster your confidence.
- Accept that you are allowed to disagree and that it’s OK to do so. You don’t need permission to put up a reasonable argument.
- Do not give up your rights or your autonomy to someone else. And don’t apologize if you have done nothing wrong. Remember what Eleanor Roosevelt said: “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” So make sure that you do not give anyone that consent.
- You are entitled to your own opinion without having to feel guilty about it. So offer your opinion as an alternative point of view. But do not allow yourself to shoulder any blame for disagreeing.
Once you learn how to stand up for yourself you will have renewed respect for yourself. And it follows that others will have much more respect for you too.
Visit a related post which may be of interest if you find it difficult to apologize.