How to Apologize

share this post:

share this post:

Super Attractor book launch in NYCLast week I celebrated 14 years of sober recovery.

And today is an opportunity to practice the principles that saved my life.

So here goes…

I’ve had a REALLY busy last couple of months. So much has been going on, with Super Attractor coming out and my book tour kicking off.

I’ve been having so much fun at the events, going on podcasts and shows, and teaching lessons from the book.

But amidst all the excitement I also had a really difficult experience — and I had to relearn an important lesson.

This is what I want to share with you today.

I’ve talked before about how one part of being on a spiritual path is taking care of your side of the street.

In order to grow, we must be willing to get honest with ourselves and others in a loving and compassionate way.

That’s what I want to do right now, in this post. I want to own up to some very uncool behavior on my part during my NYC book launch.

My talk onstage was filled with joy. But I blew it during my book signing. I wasn’t acting in my highest self, and I want to apologize. This is also a chance for me to share how I turn questionable behavior into a learning opportunity to be a better version of myself.

During my book signing in New York, I was tired and overwhelmed. That’s how I felt, but it’s no excuse. Midway through the signing, I stopped thinking about all the loving people who had come out for this experience. I focused more on my overwhelm and exhaustion. I was anxious to get to everyone before it got late, which made people feel disconnected and upset.

I woke up the following morning hungover with guilt. I felt saddened by my attitude, but worst of all I felt horrible that I had disappointed people. The more I tried to forgive myself, the more I knew I had to speak up.

This is how I show up when I’m wrong: I out it.

I’m outing myself for not being the Gabby I truly am. I want to take care of my side of the street and apologize for anyone I rushed on the book line. I love you all, even if I don’t personally know you. I honor your journey and I honor your commitment to love.

I honor your journey and I honor your commitment to love.

As I embark on the rest of my book tour, I am filled with immense gratitude for all of you. Thank you for being part of this community. Thank you for coming out on my tour. Thank you for reading Super Attractor. Thank you for being a force of love in this world.

So here’s the lesson, and I hope it serves you.

When you make a mistake, it’s okay to admit it. It’s okay to not make excuses for yourself. And it’s safe to apologize. I do this in my personal relationships and I’m doing it here now.

There’s great freedom in owning your side of the street. This is a powerful lesson I learned years ago in my recovery program, and as I said above, I continue to learn it and live it.

We all have a part in every situation. Our ego will want to place the blame on others, but our higher self knows we can take care of our part.

How to apologize and take responsibility when you make a mistake

Step 1: Own your part.

The first step is to gently and lovingly witness your own behavior. If you tend to beat yourself up over mistakes, this can be a challenge. But do your best to be the nonjudgmental witness. We’re all human; we all mess up.

Your ego may try to shift blame or get defensive in an attempt to protect you from pain. Again, just witness it. You might even want to thank your ego for doing its part to protect you, and let it know that you’ve got this.

Step 2: Forgive yourself.

Forgive yourself fast - How to apologizeEvery moment is an opportunity to shift, see things differently and change your energy. When you make a mistake, meet that moment with a different vibe. Forgive yourself instantly.

Radical forgiveness is one of the greatest tools for living a miraculous life. Self-attack keeps you stuck in fear and chaos and negative patterns. Forgiving yourself is what helps you heal and grow.

How to forgive yourself

I share 4 steps to self-forgiveness in my book Miracles Now:

  1. Witness the attack thought.
  2. Breathe into the feeling of discomfort.
  3. Feel the feeling.
  4. Say to yourself, “I forgive this thought. I know it is not real.”

Step 3: Take care of your side of the street.

What do you need to do in order to clean up your side of the street? In my case, I needed to apologize.

I also needed to put some practices in place for myself so that I don’t do that again, such as grounding into gratitude and calm after my talk.

There’s great freedom in taking care of your side of the street.

Taking care of your side of the street can look different depending on the situation. It often means listening to what someone else has to say once you’ve apologized or spoken your truth.

In some cases it may mean drawing a clear boundary.

It may also mean clearing negativity on an energetic level, such as with a cord-cutting meditation.

You may also recognize a spiritual assignment being presented to you and choose to show up for it.

We can choose love

When we make a mistake or act out of alignment with our highest self, it’s easy to wallow in regret and shame, deflect blame to avoid witnessing our behavior, or numb out with drinks, drugs or other addictive patterns.

That’s one way we can go.

But there is another way. When we’re wrong, we can out it. We can take responsibility, apologize and choose to see the gift in a painful experience. We can choose love.

I hope this post serves you. If you feel called to share, please leave a comment below. I’ll be reading all of them.

Read or leave comments

384 COMMENTS

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Hi Gabby,
    I write you because something happened to me after finishing your book “Super Attractor” last week and now I don’t know how to deal with it. I was recommended this book by a friend because although I consider myself a spiritual person sometimes I tend to be a pessimist about things not turning out right and blame myself. I decided to read your book and finished it last week. I really enjoyed it because I identified with a lot of the things you wrote and started to feel better. By the last chapter I was feeling super positive and used your tools to ask the Universe for an opportunity to see someone I hadn’t seen for a while and care a lot for, without forcing the encounter. Miraculously it manifested super fast, all of a sudden this person contacted me and I was able to schedule the meeting naturally with him like I had longed. Everything was going fine and I had promised myself something but at the end I didn’t fulfill it. Now I’m left feeling that although your book was a wonderful help and I felt the positive energy that connected me to the Universe to manifest that meeting, I was the one that failed. I did not keep up to what I had told myself I would do if I had that opportunity, and now I don’t know if the Universe could give me a second chance to make it right for me. Let me just say that I did not hurt the other person, I ended up hurting and failing myself. Although at the moment it felt everything was completely right, from a place of love, and the meeting ended well, now I’m the one left doubtful, hurting, feeling bad. It was clear the Universe gave me the chance that I asked for, but I feel I ruined it for me. How can I recover from that? Is it possible to ask for a second chance? I think the worst feeling is when you feel you’ve failed yourself.

    1. You can absolutely ask for a second chance. When something is truly meant for us, it will come back around. Before you call in this opportunity, it might be helpful to release the self judgment that is coming up. Here are some practices to help you do that: https://gabbybernstein.com/compassion-blog/ and https://gabbybernstein.com/a-video-lesson-guided-meditation/. Also, if fear kept you from fulfilling the promise you made to yourself, you may want to check out this post as well: https://gabbybernstein.com/strengthen-faith-weaken-fear/. Sending you lots of love and compassion as you work to overcome your fear of failure. xoxo

  2. Gabby, I really needed to reach out to you desperately. I was brought up in a abusive home. As a young adult I drank a lot and I had done many horrible things to those I loved by wanting the attention of men. I had so much anger and 10 years later I was diagnosed with BPD and Complex PTSD. I have a fiancé and have been with this kind man for 5 years. The things I have done in the past are so shameful that I can not bare to bring up and contacting these people so many years later to tell them what I had done makes me so sick to my stomach because I could never imagine doing those things now. I don’t know if I should contact all those people and tell them what I had done because I have not seen them in years, or whether I need to tell my fiancé so he knows that I once did those things. I am very hard on myself but just feel so guilty and shamed that I ever did those things. Gabby please, I would love your thoughts on this xoxo

    1. I would also like to note that I have always been faithful to my fiancé and it’s whether or not I should tell him about my past so he knows that I used to be capable of such things. This all happened years before I met him. Thanks so much xoxo

    2. I want to honor you, Alicia, for doing all that you can to show up for yourself. It takes courage and strength to change habits and make amends. I know that in this blog post Gabby talks about the importance of apologizing and taking responsibility for your actions, but in the 12-Step Program they say that there is one thing that we should consider before making amends.

      According to Step 9, if there is a situation “where to make a full revelation would seriously harm the one to whom we are making amends, or, quite as important, other people” then we can re-consider making a “complete disclosure.” In other words, we want to apologize and take responsibility for our actions except for when it would do more damage than good to the other person. In these cases, the work would be internal, (between ourselves and the universe).

      If you feel like it might be helpful, you can visit https://www.aa.org to find an online meeting. It is a very supportive community and the path to recovery is laid out for you in the Twelve Steps. Being in the program, you would have a sponsor to support you as you go through the steps, including step 9, making amends.

      Sending you big love! xoxo

      -quotes are from the book: 12 Steps and 12 Traditions

  3. Your book was recommended to me & it’s been so great to me! I’ve been depressed for over a year following a break up and my heart hurts so much. Despite everything I want him back in my life & I know you can’t manifest anyone to come back. I look for signs but everything just feels like a mess. I’m an emotional mess. I feel empty, worthless and unloveable. He chose to be with someone else and he gets aggravated when I message him yet he tells me he still loves me. I desperately want him back and this is my first time admitting it. I just feel like there’s a strong connection but it’s too painful to be rejected every single time. I guess where I’m going is…I need help. I want to control that urge & I want to manifest a real love..one that makes me feel valued. im reaching out for guidance and I’m willing to accept all help. Thanks so much!

    1. I’m sending you much love and healing light, Aracely, and I’m proud of you for reaching out. First, if you have not seen my SuperSoul talk where I discuss the 5 Steps of Spiritual Surrender, I suggest checking it out here: https://gabbybernstein.com/super-soul-surrender/. Second, starting on January 1st, I’m leading a 21 day manifesting challenge. You can find the details here: https://gabbybernstein.com/manifestingchallenge/.
      I hope you find this helpful! xo

  4. Gabby, I love your work and energy. but I have truly reached a difficult spot. My brother died this year (on his birthday) from kidney failure, my family is totally hostile and broken, but I have some contact and love. My partner broke up with me, a few months after brother. and we have some contact that I usually initiate on text. I even ask for my sign that we will get back together. I often see it but nothing changes. I carry so much hurt and longing inside me and I just move from fighting tears from one day to the next. I have just started EMDR to address the trauma’s of my family and brother dying. I am hurting and just cannot see the end of this troubled time. I would really appreciate some guidance please as all I do is cry and try and force myself to accept and engage in distractions.

    1. Gabby,
      I made a mistake at work recently and lost my job as a result. I found this post looking for guidance.
      I am so ridden with guilt I can’t eat, sleep, or be present with my 2-year-old daughter.
      I know there is a lesson in this, and This post helped, but I honestly don’t know how I can or will move past this.

      1. Hi Anne. Thank you for your honest share. I want to honor you for doing all you can to show up for yourself and your daughter. If you haven’t see it yet, I encourage you to check out my free 1 hour anxiety relief workshop. You can access it here: http://www.gabbybernstein.com/relief. You may also find these tools and practices helpful:
        https://gabbybernstein.com/coronavirus-anxiety/
        https://gabbybernstein.com/money-manifesting-clear-blocks-abundance/
        https://gabbybernstein.com/how-to-create-abundance/
        May you be guided to the right and perfect resources to support you during this time.
        xoxo

  5. I feel the universe brought me to this article. Is there ever a time where we apologize, yet that apology is not accepted? How do I get over the guilt of the situation and of the apology not being accepted? And how you do you move on from waiting for them to apologize in return. About 3 months ago I had a rare panic attack while my in-laws were in town. Not to get into too much detail their visit ended very abruptly and on extreme negative terms. To the point where they consider me out of their life. I’ve apologized and they still want nothing to do with me. And speak very poorly of me which to me is only based on one day of my life, one of the lowest days of my life, when the stress of their visit caused me to spiral into a panic attack. Now I’m at the point of “why should I apologize when I legit had a breakdown.” Why are they not apologizing for their behavior?

    I’ve been a fan for ages. You’ve helped me through many chapters of my life.

    1. Thank you for your honest share, Aimee. I’m so grateful that my work has served you. To help you heal from this situation, here are the links to three blog posts that I think will help you accept your in-laws for who they are, re-write the story you are telling yourself, and cut the energetic cord that is contributing to your feelings of guilt and fear. I hope this helps!
      https://gabbybernstein.com/accepting-people-where-they-are/
      https://gabbybernstein.com/release-story-victim/
      https://gabbybernstein.com/forgiveness-myths/

  6. I’ve been on my journey to heal for a while now. But I’ve had some past mistakes I made thrown at me this week. I acted terribly towards sisters when I was hurting from years of their pain. I can’t forgive myself even though this was a long while ago. What can I do please?

  7. Thank you so much for sharing this! I recently had an incident last night that I could not wrap my head around in solving.

    I am a person in recovery and in my outpatient group session I lashed out on fellow memeber’s when the discussion, I felt, was going way off topic.

    I allowed my anxiety and inpatient to come through and acted against my usual upbeat and supportive behavior.

    This article helped me to solve the problem on forgiveness.

    We are all only human but thankfully growing from these experiences.

    Thank you again!

    Many Blessings,
    Amanda M

  8. Thank you Gabby for this timely and very helpful post.
    Recently I wasn’t acting in my highest self and I’ve just used this information to give a heartfelt apology to someone.
    It’s so liberating to own my part and then apologise appropriately.
    Thank you.

  9. Hey Gabby,
    Just felt to comment on this.I think it is wonderful you are apologetic and conscious about not being as ” present” as you should have at your book signing.It shows humility and grace However, you are only human.Self care doesn’t make any of us invincible.We can, and should, strive to be at our best but even when we do, there are times when it doesn’t seem ” enough” for ourselves or others.Just sayin’.

    ” To err is human, to forgive is divine.”

    Lots of Love XOXO.

  10. First and foremost, you are here in a human body going through all these worldly experiences… overwhelm and exhaustion are part of that as is the occasional reaction of just not having the energy to keep going… and so in those moments our integrity isn’t at its best. That is part of this human journey. The ownership of those times is what we so often miss, which is where we grow. Thank you for this fearless post. I hope you’re giving yourself grace, and I hope you’ll find others providing you with it, too. Much Love, Shannon P.S. Loving Super Attractor

  11. Thank you for sharing and for your candid remarks. I’ve felt terrible (a.k.a. had a guilt hangover) when I haven’t been present. Your apology is a great reminder to clear your energy and hopefully revitalize some one else’s energy.

  12. Thank you Gabby. I was at the book signing! I was feeling so great from your talk. I would have liked a little more time with you. However, I did manage to connect with you for just a few seconds. I waited for you to look up at me after signing my book. I smiled and just said “thank you, it’s so nice to meet you”. You warmly smiled back and said “thank you my love.” Now I will say what I didn’t get to say then: THANK YOU! Your words, books, youtube videos, a d messages have helped me so much over the past couple of months. I was in a very dark place after suffering yet another personal loss. I was consumed with pain, grief, fear and loneliness. Your book, The Universe Has Your Back was recommended to me by a dear friend. Something in me changed when I started listening to it. I have found my way out of that place. I am still a work in progress, but now I choose love over everything else just a little more each day. ❤️

    1. Dear Brenda, thank you for coming out. ♥️ I’m so grateful this work has been supporting and encouraging you. And so grateful for these beautiful shifts you have experienced. You are worth it! Continue to choose love. Sending you much light and love.

  13. You are only human Gabby. I appreciate your honesty and humility. I appreciate how you take these experiences and share them to help the rest of us who make the same mistakes. You are a great light and you certainly have been one for me. Just wanted to share with you something special that happened to me after reading “The Universe Has Your Back”. That book was such a gift to me that even before I finished reading it I woke up one morning a totally different person. I felt I had died and went to Heaven but I was still here on earth. I researched my symptoms I was feeling and what happened to me was what is called “Kundalini Awakening”. I said to myself I’m going to do whatever I have to do to stay in this state. Thank You Dear One.

  14. Thank you for reminding me to forgive myself quickly. Your description of the negative emotional trap we can get into with self pity is spot on. I’ve been working on myself so much that I get so embarrassed and frustrated when I still act in ways that aren’t ideal. Specifically for me it’s the pattern of getting ready for work in the morning, I am controlling, short and often just plain rude to my family. Then I feel horrible guilt the rest of the day. It’s a pattern I’m using your teachings to help eliminate.

    1. Thank you for this honest, heartfelt share. Continue to implement these tools and be open to all the amazing shifts ahead. <3

  15. Dear gabrielle
    i am sorry to ask you for some help yet again. I am not sure if relevant and trying to explain this is hard in couple lines but as a kid and young adult i struggled feeling bad because i could not eat healthily. I was either left eating whatever i wanted with my mothers pantry/fridge overfilled with too many food or toxic food. For my mother eating is in front of tv on the coach in the dark alone eating cereal ( the sugary kind) pretzels nuts ( salted bought in large bags ) fudges ice cream toast … sometimes she eats a meal but usually says because working too late she too tired.. even if i could do healthy stuff. I manage to get myself disciplined enough the last 7 years to buy myself a normal sizing of fruits salad vegetable… i repaired my gut could go everyday felt beautiful in the morning happier but i have cracked 2 weeks ago and started to get salty peanuts every night… i feel bad disgusting and not myself scared of gaining and everything seems like i can’t stop as i see her eating that everyday and i don’t know what to do … if i ask her too get healthier not big sizing unsalted… she says that i am the reason for her eating because she would buy large amounts of vegetables meat pasta cheese etc ( remember the unhealthy kinds in abnormal amount )It’s not my home and i just wish there was nothing in that quantity or as fat/modified/salted as these has i tolerate only couple fruits vegetables ( mostly salads) had ibs in the past.Thank u for your help…

    1. Hi Cynthia. In Super Attractor, I talk about how we can choose again. Sharing here is a beautiful sign that you want to make some shifts and choose again. A great place to start is by sending immense love and gratitude to yourself for wanting to make some healing changes. Forgiving yourself will help you start to be open to some big, exciting shifts. Sending you lots of love! <3

  16. Well said, open and vulnerable…you have beautiful courage! I love how you explain this process and the levels involved. Not just forgive yourself or apologize, there’s more to it…to really heal and move on.

I only recommend products and brands I passionately believe in, but wanted you to know that when I make a recommendation, I may receive a referral fee.

BECOME A MIRACLE MEMBER

The next best thing to having me as your personal coach!


FREE ONLINE ANXIETY RELIEF WORKSHOP

My Proven Tools for Releasing Anxiety & Finding Peace


Free Super Attractor Introduction

Get the 26-minute audio intro


Get Super Attractor Now

Bonus gift: 2-hour Manifesting Workshop


STEP INTO ABUNDANCE

Get my top tips for Spiritual Entrepreneurs with my 10 Ways to Succeed download.


 

Everything you need to stay
consistent on your spiritual path.

“The next best thing to having
Gabby as your personal coach!”

By using this site, you agree to our privacy policy.

Accept Read More