Former Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly wrote Wednesday about the lessons he learned while leading the service, which included checking your anger and avoiding profanity.

Modly resigned under fire last April after removing the commanding officer of an aircraft carrier stricken by COVID-19 and flying to Guam to where he trashed that officer to his crew in a profanity-laced speech. In his new column, published in the U.S. Naval Institute’s magazine, Thomas Modly admitted that he made mistakes as the head of the Navy.

“Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone,” Modly wrote in the article. “In times of high tension and stress — times like the current COVID-19 pandemic — fear often accentuates mistakes and increases the misinterpretations of facts surrounding them.”

In early April, Thomas Modly publicly fired Capt. Brett Crozier, the USS Theodore Roosevelt’s commanding officer, after a letter the captain had written warning about a worsening coronavirus outbreak aboard the carrier leaked to the media. Days later, Modly flew out to Guam, where the carrier had been sidelined by the outbreak, to talk to the crew.

Shortly after his speech, audio recordings were leaked to the press. In the audio, Modly can be heard describing Crozier, who was beloved by the crew, as possibly “too naive or too stupid to be commanding officer of a ship like this.” He accused Crozier of “betrayal” and said the media — which ran stories based on Crozier’s warning that coronavirus was spreading through the deployed ship — was using this information “to divide us.”

The acting secretary’s remarks to the roughly 5,000 sailors aboard the carrier were widely criticized. Although he initially said he stood by his statements, “even, regrettably any profanity that may have been used for emphasis,” he later apologized for his comments, specifically those critical of Crozier.

“Don’t try to be someone you are not, and, as I learned, avoid using profanity, particularly when your audience might be global,” Modly wrote Wednesday, although he didn’t completely rule it out.

“Cursing can be an effective form of communication if you are a comedian, a football coach, or a master chief, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless absolutely necessary,” he wrote. “Sometimes it just might be.”