how to apologize

How To Apologize

I would like to dedicate today’s message to all politicians everywhere, since today is election day.  In reality it’s a message for all of us.  In truth our leadership is a reflection of us – of what we allow and what we endorse.  We voted them in.  We have to accept that responsibility.  At the end of the day we all have to be responsible for our actions and our in-actions.  Maybe the decisions we make every day don’t impact thousands, but the impact can be just as deep or deeper.

Today I want to talk about what constitutes a sincere apology.

First step is pretty evident.  It’s got to be sincere, from your heart, or you may as well just forget it.  It carries no weight, no vibrational substance, and is pretty meaningless if it doesn’t come from your heart.

Second, it needs to be about the person who was harmed and how it affected them.  How many people you know offer you a quick “I’m sorry” followed by an excuse:  “I’m sorry I was late but my alarm clock didn’t go off.”  “I know I missed that appointment but my car wouldn’t start.”  “I shouldn’t have said that to you, but I was really annoyed and upset.”

Guess what – those excuses are pretty lame.  If that’s what you do, then maybe you should stop doing it right now.  An apology isn’t about you – it’s about the person who suffered.  It’s not about why you did or didn’t do it.  It’s about you realizing how they felt, or were inconvenienced because of it, whether you meant to do it or not.

Here are some examples that actually work and show you are caring about THEM more than about YOU:  “I apologize that I was late.  You were probably inconvenienced or worried and I was so wrong to do that.”   I apologize that I said those angry words.  They probably hurt you, and you deserve better than that.”   “I apologize that I missed your birthday.  There is no excuse and may have made you feel like I don’t love you the way you deserve to be loved.”

Third thought on how to apologize, follow it up with action.  “What can I do to make it up?”, “What do I do that makes you feel loved by me?  because I intend to do more of that.”  “Can I get you something to make you feel better?”

Finally you must take appropriate action to make sure it doesn’t happen again.  You can offer the most sincere apology in the world, and really mean it, but if it doesn’t create a desire in you to change the behavior or fix the issue that led to the problem in the first place, it hasn’t really changed anything.

So again, to all of you who are politicians:

Don’t tell me you are sorry the world is in such a mess and then offer me an excuse or blame someone else because it got that way.
Don’t tell me how bad you feel about it.  Put yourself in my place and understand how bad I feel about it.
Tell me what you are going to do to make it better and then do it.
Make some serious changes in yourself and wherever you wield influence so that this doesn’t happen again.

Many blessings to all,
Elaine

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