Day 15 #LintonReflections 2016

Reflecting through the Lenten season, I’m learning I need to apologize better. And maybe you do too. I don’t know. But if you’re looking for some ways to fine tune your apologies (because it’s not if you apologize that counts; it’s how you apologize), then check out how I plan to say “sorry” better.

  1. I’m going to admit I was or did wrong without excusing it in any way. I will own it. I’m not going to say, “If I did this or that…” or “If you think I offended you…” or “I know I said this, but…” Instead, I’m going to say, “I was wrong for offending you” or “I did this and shouldn’t have. It was wrong.” Then I’ll say, “I apologize.” Period.
  2. I will refuse to minimize my reason to apologize by offering general stats on how lots of other people do the same thing. I will recognize and acknowledge that the apology attaches to me and me only. I won’t ask other people committing similar offenses to share the load with me.
  3. I won’t delegitimize a person’s charge by explaining how whatever I did wouldn’t have bothered me or by suggesting I wouldn’t have taken it that way. If a person says they didn’t like something I said or did then it’s true. They didn’t like it. It hurt them. They were offended. It’s real. I need to apologize; no caveats allowed.
  4. I will apologize for the specific offense. I’m not going to avoid confronting the real reason I need to apologize by serving up some half-baked, watered down generic apology like “I’m sorry for being overbearing at times,” or “I apologize for letting my words get a way from me,” or “I’m sorry for messing up.” These can be fine introductions to a good apology as long as they’re followed by enough expressed detail of the offense so the person deserving the apology knows I know what I’m apologizing for.
  5. Another person will not have to pull an apology out of me after I recognize I need to apologize. Finding the courage and decency for me to apologize is not anyone else’s work. It’s mine.
  6. All apologies, as much as it’s possible, will be face to face, eye to eye.

What are some ways you could make your apologies better?

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