Interview with the Not Sorry Club Founder, Betty Adamou

Hey there! Are you curious to find out more about the Not Sorry Club?
Check out our 8-question interview below with Betty Adamou (BA) to find out why she started the Not Sorry Club, what it means, and her hopes for how the Not Sorry Club and the 1 week #NotSorryChallenge will help women.
1. What is the Not Sorry Club?
BA: The Not Sorry club aims to foster a community to encourage a more confident and non-apologetic mentality that we want more women adopt; to stop apologising for taking up space and being their true selves.
Many of us can identify with saying ‘sorry’ unnecessarily, and doing so diminishes our authority, and also, it’s not needed.
While online only for now, we want women to come together and have a safe space to share stories, support one another, but without apologising for saying how they truly think and feel. Many women I’ve met throughout my life find themselves feeling apologetic about so many things and end up living lives that are not letting them realise their true power; be it in the ways we become apologetic in work, towards family members, friends, partners, how we feel about having children or not, and many other issues. The Not Sorry Club allows women to discuss these pain points, why we have them, and how we can live non-apologetic lives. 
2. Why did you create the Not Sorry Club?
BA: As the homepage notes, I found a beautiful group of women in Bali as part of a work-tourism programme called Unsettled, and although that was a glorious month, I was sad at how short-lived it was. I wanted to create the honest, giving and supportive sisterhood I found out there, but on my doorstep in here in the UK, but also beyond our borders too. This is another reason why the not Sorry Club is online-only for now. I also wanted to create the Not Sorry Club because frankly, I’m sick and tired of saying Sorry and want to support other women who feel the same! 
3. Why is the Not Sorry Club important to you?
BA: I grew up in environments were I was either constantly apologising or being made to feel bad about things that were outside of my control. I was made to feel bad for being smart, creating important personal boundaries, and was always told I was ‘sensitive’. This resulted in me saying, and being, sorry for most things; my intelligence, my success, and even the levels of my ambition. It affected my confidence. It was in Bali that I truly realised just how *much* I say sorry or display apologetic mannerisms and body language. One day, I was letting off steam to a girlfriend, and must’ve said sorry at least 10 times. She hugged me and said “No wonder you’re always saying sorry. You’ve been made to feel bad for taking up ANY space – physical or emotional”. We were in a sauna at the time, and my tears of sadness and laughter were being quickly dehydrated. That sauna moment was a wake-up call.
The ‘sorrys’ in my mind and mouth have held me back to my true and full potential.
I swore: not no more.
For one week, I challenged myself to omit my sorrys. I removed ‘sorry’ from emails, texts, and words, and to my amazement, in just a few days, I felt MUCH more confident. Now, it’s a more permanent non-apologetic mentality I try to hold onto. Don’t get me wrong, old habits die hard and I find myself with a ‘sorry’ on the top of my tongue at least once a day, but I’ve mostly cut that shit out, and feel better for it.
Now I want more women to do the same – stop apologising for taking up space and being themselves. Break out of those habits and realise their power, capacity for love, and strength.
We do it all the time “Sorry, what did you say?”. “Sorry, can I just ask something?”. “Sorry, bit I’d like to share an idea”. Why are we always sorry? We nee to STOP.
4. In the future, you intend to launch secret face-to-face Not Sorry Club meetings. What can people expect from these sessions?
BA: Each session will be between 1.5-2 hours in spaces that feel comfortable, private and not overly formal.
The reason we want to keep the venues a secret is because we appreciate that the women who’ll be attending are likely to share personal stories so we don’t just want anyone showing up. We want to ensure the privacy and feelings of safety for all who attend to tell their stories.
Each session will focus on how we stop being apologetic in different parts of our lives; the way we often apologise for dreaming big about future plans, the way we apologise when it comes to family, friendship, partners and even the way we hide and are apologetic about who we really are.
What we want to do is unpack where that might come from, share our experiences but leave each session with advice and guidance on how to overcome these apologetic feelings. We want every woman who is part of the Not Sorry Club to leave every interaction with us feeling more confident and elevated.
To be clear – these are not sessions where we bring in an expert speaker from such and such a company every time. Sure, now and then we may have someone come and share their wisdom, but ultimately, everyone who attends a club session is a real person, sharing real stories. Even as a Founder, I’ll be sitting in to listen and share as well.
5. Who do you imagine will want to attend the Not Sorry Club?
BA: In truth, women like me. Women who are smart, ambitious, talented and know that they are capable of so much more, but know they’re holding themselves back. Perhaps it’s because they don’t know how to navigate those next steps. Perhaps it’s because toxic people have made them feel unworthy. Perhaps it’s due to a lack of confidence in asking for that promotion, or telling someone how you really feel.
Ultimately, these are women who want true happiness and contentment, are committed to getting there, but would appreciate a group of supportive, kind and listening women to help navigate those waters. The women who attend will learn from one another and with any luck, friendships will be created that span outside the club sessions.
6. Are there any plans to expand the Not Sorry Club outside of were you’re based right now, in Suffolk, England?
BA: Absolutely. While the Not Sorry Club is online-only for now, operating mostly from our website and Instagram page, the face-to-face secret meetings we eventually hold will go from Suffolk, to the rest of the UK, and other parts of the world.
I’m lucky to have fantastic friends around the globe – many of who want to begin their own Not Sorry Club chapters in their regions outside the UK. 
7. Finally, when can we expect the first Not Sorry Club session?
BA: By the end of 2021 there will be at least one Not Sorry Club session. Even before we announce the date, you can register your interest on our Events page where you’ll be notified of the session date, and register to come along.
8. Any final words about the Not Sorry Club?
BA: Yes – get involved! Please take the 1 week Not Sorry Challenge! We’re inviting people to take the challenge, share posts about their challenge experience, and even become a contributing writer where you can share your Not Sorry 1 Week Experience with the community on our website, and on our Instagram page. If you’d like to write a short piece about what it felt like not to say Sorry for 1 week, or a poem, or a song, or rap – that’s up to you! We will welcome all types of feedback on the 1 week Not Sorry Challenge. You can share updates about your challenge experience day by day by using the hashtag #NotSorryChallenge.
Finally – I’d say give yourself the opportunity to park your sorry’s at the door for once, even if it is for a couple of blissful hours. 
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