A True Apology Comes Without Justification - Grasshopper
The closest life comes to having an undo button is an apology. It shows respect, mends wounds, and opens a door for forgiveness to walk through. We rarely apologize effectively, causing our offense to be even more offensive.
If you ever say, "I'm sorry, but," you are a sorry ass.
(substitute "ninnyhammer" for those with sensibilities).
If that's the way you apologize, save your breath because you haven't accomplished anything other than launching another assault on that person. An apology with any justification never communicates sorrow. And have you noticed that many apologies attempt to make the other person responsible for your behavior, which is never the case?
"You made me do that" is the biggest cop-out the mind has ever invented. Even if it were true, why apologize? If you were truly justified, no apology would be necessary. The apology is being misused. It's being offered to assuage your guilt or to temporarily appease the other person. Sorrow is absent and your words are hollow.
Here's my favorite. The cheating spouse apologizing for their infidelities with some form of making it the other person's fault. "I'm sorry, but if you were more understanding of my needs, I would have never have canoodled with (fill in the blank).
Yes, it may be true that there are issues in the above marriage that need addressing, but not by opening the door with false regrets.
I am reminded of a line of dialogue I heard on an episode of Law & Order:
"I couldn't justify my actions, so I made up someone to blame."
I wrote a blog post on October 25th 2007 which contains a piece called THE OPPORTUNITY. If you're struggling with making making sincere apologies, I encourage you to read it at http://GrasshopperNotes.com/blog
If you have caused another person harm by your actions and you wish to make amends, start with the only two words that are necessary: I'm sorry. I trust you noticed that the punctuation point after those two words was a period.
There are times in your life where you will say things to people that they find offensive. If you truly mean the things you say, don't apologize because your mournfulness will have the smarminess of a bad funeral director.
Sadly, some people will remain in denial for a lifetime that they've done anything that requires an apology. Others retain an aura of superiority that keeps a sense of entitlement for their actions in place that doesn't require them to apologize. Seeking apologies from these folks is wasted effort. If you ever do get one from them, cover up your toes because the justification shoe is probably next.
A true apology is delivered with love, respect and without mitigation.
It's easy to recognize this flaw in others and more beneficial if you recognize it in yourself. If you see a bit of yourself in here, begin slowly. Find something small that you can truly apologize for and try it on for size. You may find that your new look is flattering and feels more comfortable than you ever imagined.
All the best,
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