It occurred to me, or rather, it was presented to me, that I make excuses for myself. A lot. Not because I'm in the wrong, but because I compulsively apologise.
Not just in saying sorry, (for things that totally don't justify an apology - ie "I tried your phone but i couldn't get a signal - oh my god i'm so sorry!") but in the way i communicate. Lets just say for someone who identifies as an extrovert, i can skirt around an issue with the skill of a figure skater.
This was made abundantly clear to me in two ways. The first was when I realised i tell people "I'm just a wife" or "I'm just a Mum" or "I'm just a photographer".
The number of times i send an email with
"Hi (insert name here),
Just getting in contact / just writing to say / just messagaing because"
Why the hell do i do this? What's more, I would find this so bloody irritating if someone were to communicate with me in said fashion. spit it out!!!
The second way i discovered this habit was far more jolting. My daughter (aka the Czarina from my instagram) was trying to jump into the pool. She was scared (it's a pretty big pool). When coaxing and bribery proved fruitless, I decided to get down to brass tacks.
"Sweetie - what's wrong? Why don't you want to do it?"
Her answer - "Because I'm just a girl".
That tore it. Don't make excuses. Don't belittle yourself. Don't undermine who you are or what you do.
You are not "just" anything. You are SOMETHING.
I finish with this great sketch, which hits so close to home. God Bless you, Amy Schumer.