Everyday inspiration: Limit your "sorries"

Jun 19, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. ET
Image: 101dalmatians/Vetta/Getty Images

Many women have a real problem with saying "sorry" — even when no apology is necessary. Frequently, they don't even realize they're doing it. Awareness is the first step in breaking the habit.

Sorry note | Sheknows.com

Photo credit: 101dalmatians/Vetta/Getty Images

Challenge: limit your "sorries"

Why? Research shows women apologize more than men do because they have a lower threshold for what constitutes offensive behavior. If you think you might be an over-apologizer, challenge yourself to skip the "sorries" and see what happens.

Raina: I think I epically failed this challenge, but not for a lack of trying. I think I attempted this every day this week, and to my frustration, I simply could not catch myself in the act, yet I know I said it. I think "sorry" has unfortunately become a part of my everyday vocabulary. It was like trying to count the number of times you say "uh" in a presentation. Someone else has to purposely be keeping track for you. If anything, though, at least I have become aware of it. That's the first step, right?

Kristen: Hashtag #sorrynotsorry on Twitter is one of my favorites. It gives people brazen confidence to say whatever they want — and then tag it with the blithe #sorrynotsorry. Are they really sorry? Uh no, that's the point.

When faced with the challenge of not saying, "I'm sorry," for an entire day, I'll admit I was nervous. Usually I'm sarcastic, or put my foot in my mouth, but not today. I made it until 4 p.m., when my daughter was crying at the pharmacy, before I uttered "sorry." It was unnecessary, and I cringed right after the five-letter word left my lips.

Our Everyday Inspiration series wants to inspire you with small ways to improve your life. We've asked 20 women to take on a variety of small challenges and share their results. See all of our Everyday Inspiration challenges here, and meet the women here.