A couple of weeks ago, while out to dinner with a friend, a person’s name came up in our conversation (who was not present) and I said something slightly disparaging about them.

I didn’t say anything too demeaning, but I absolutely said something I would not have said had they been there with us.

I felt bad immediately after I said it.

And that icky feeling continued until the next morning.


Because I violated my core values and that’s not the type person I want to be.

I do not want to be the type of person that ‘talks behind people’s backs.’

I do not want to be the type of person that gossips.

I do not want to the type of person that displays disrespectful behavior.

So what did I do with my icky feeling?

I sat with it.

I acknowledged it.

I leaned into it.

Emotions provide helpful information for us to better navigate our world. This icky feeling was an important red flag for me.

Any time I make a mistake, make a poor decision, or say something I wish I could take back… I do 4 things:

  1. I own it
  2. I make amends for it
  3. I learn from it
  4. I move on from it

So I texted the friend I went to dinner with… took full ownership… and apologized for what I said.

He barely remembered the comment and assured me it was no big deal.

While I appreciated his grace… violating my core values is a big deal… to me.

I strive to live a life where my core values and behaviors are aligned. To live a life based on high standards and principles.

Even with that said, I fully acknowledge that I am flawed and fallible… and I give myself the space to make mistakes and occasionally do/say things that are less than ideal.

Holding myself to a high standard of character and integrity is not about perfection… it’s about progress… and about working to become the best version of myself as consistently as possible.

Lesson learned. Next play.