Too many things are passed off as apologies that are anything but apologies; they are faux apologies, nothing but stinky self-serving justifications, transparent rationalizations and paper-thin excuses served up as a flimsy attempt to dodge the full consequences of their behavior.
– Accept Responsibility: Never, ever offer excuses.
– Express authentic remorse, demonstrate empathy.
– Make sincere amends: “What can I do to make it right?” Make every effort to return offended party(s) back to their original position or if not possible, in some way “pay it forward” i.e. help others in a similar position.
– Pledge not to repeat the offense i.e. when in doubt, Listen to the Action.
True apologies require courage. You are choosing to doff your armor, voluntarily making yourself vulnerable, opening yourself up to criticism. Yet it is a critical step in re-establishing trust, demonstrating your integrity, and opening lines of communication. Properly done, a genuine apology builds rapport, starts a dialogue, and creates an opportunity to rebuild, even deepen the relationship. A bona fide apology demonstrates self-confidence and enhances your reputation, personal integrity, and honor.
“Never ruin an apology with an excuse.” – Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790
“Right actions in the future are the best apologies for bad actions in the past.” – Tryon Edwards, 1809-1894
“A stiff apology is a second insult… The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been wronged; he wants to be healed because he has been hurt.” – Gilbert K. Chesterton, 1874-1936
*”Sorry Don’t Get It Done, Dude.” – John Wayne, Rio Bravo, 1959
As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier