Sometimes I find myself saying to people often when they apologize to me “No apology necessary”. I usually am not quick to take offense. However, I’m quick to apologize when I think or feel that I may have said or done something that might have offended someone. I realize that for some apologies can come a dime a dozen. Talk is cheap but the proof is in the pudding. I ascribe to the standard, “Go and sin no more!” I strive not to commit that same offense again. I chose to confirm my offenses so that I’m careful not to be a repeat offender.
There is an art to giving and receiving an apology. When we are giving an apology we need to be specific. An apology can be more effective when it addresses the action that impacted someone in a meaningful way. Also, when apologizing we must focus on the fact that what we said or did offended someone instead of on our intention. We may not have intended to offend however, our intentions don’t erase the experience of the offense by the injured party.
If you have been offended, take some time to understand why you feel the way you do. Then say so, just like you would if someone was stepping on your toes. Honesty is the best policy. If you need an apology, don’t demand it. Demanding an apology rarely results in resolution. Do your best to remain in control and don’t become reactive.
The goal of an apology is not about blame. Apologies are effective when the person who apologizes acknowledges the offense and works to keep it from happening again. Apologies can be tools to help heal relationships and move them forward. Consequently, apologies are necessary! If you require assistance in apologizing or accepting an apology, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.