Presentation on theme: "The Elements of a Real Apology"— Presentation transcript:
1 The Elements of a Real Apology Sources: “So-o-o-o-o- Sorry: The Art of the Apology, Susan Hebble.
2 A Proper Apology Should Always Include: a detailed account of the situationacknowledgement of the hurt or damage donetaking responsibility for the situationrecognition of your role in the eventa statement of regretasking for forgivenessa promise that it won't happen againa form of restitution whenever possible
3 A Detailed Account of the Situation: By giving a detailed account of the offence, you are making sure that both you and the other person are talking about the same thing. It also legitimizes the feelings of the recipient by having the person who caused the offence recount the situation. Be specific as possible and your apology should be focused on the particular event(s). Example: if you missed a important date (event), don’t apologize for your general absentmindedness but instead for missing that specific date.
4 Acknowledgement of the hurt or damage done: By acknowledging the hurt or damage done, you’re are validating their feelings and the recipient begins to sense that you understand the situation. This is important to rebuilding your relationship because it legitimizes their reaction, even if others in the same situation may have reacted differently.
5 Taking Responsibility for the Situation: Taking responsibility and recognizing your role in the situation without offering excuses is important to letting the person you’ve hurt know that you understand that the even and your actions did cause them harm. Do not try to defend yourself or justify your actions. The apology is all about them and how they feel. It doesn’t matter if the actions were intentional or not, the end result is the same and that is what needs to be focused on when learning how to say I’m sorry.
6 Recognition of Your Role in the Event: Do not try to defend yourself or justify your actions. The apology is all about them and how they feel. It doesn’t matter if the actions were intentional or not, the end result is the same and that is what needs to be focused on when learning how to say I’m sorry.
7 A Statement of Regret:Including a statement of regret such as I “apologize” or “I’m sorry” along with a promise that it won’t happen again are important to rebuilding the relationship and are key ingredients to any apology. After all, there is no value in apologizing for something that you will do again and again. However, the apology must show sincerely, remorse for the misbehavior. Sincerity cannot be faked: we know it when we hear it; and we sure as heck know fake sincerity when we hear it!
8 Asking for Forgiveness: Asking for forgiveness at the end of the apology gives the “power” back to the recipient. It tells them, that you have done all that you can do by apologizing and providing whatever form of restitution you can. The next move is up to them.
9 A Form of Restitution Whenever Possible: The offender has to give something back, atone in some way for his offense. This is easily said but hard to do. How do we mend a broken heart? The offender needs to listen, openly and earnestly. He needs to hear what the person has to say: let her talk: let her suggest what might be done to restore harmony to the relationship. “The knowledge that one is heard and valued has incredible healing power; it can mend even seemingly irreparable wounds.” Martha Beck
10 ValueThe value of an apology is hard to measure, but it allows both the offender and the offended to move forward because it re-establishes the harmony in what had been an unsettled and unbalanced relationship. Nick Smith: apologies “strike at the heart of our commitments and call on us to honor our basic duties. [They] can also speak directly to our character and integrity”.
11 ValueThe apology, can restore social order; it acknowledges the presumption of a common ethic, a common wisdom of what is right and wrong in how we treat one another.
12 FrailtyThe apology represents a common frailty—we are all humans; we will all make mistakes, perhaps even hurt someone, intentionally or not, and then face the dilemma of how to go from there. The apology requires us to shift our focus from ourselves—our own discomfort, our own embarrassment, our own sense of guilt—to the person or people we’ve offended—hurt—sense of betrayal.
13 FrailtyIt requires us to act self-lessly rather than selfishly. It forces us to look at our own flaws, and then look beyond them to the person we’ve hurt. But anyone who has offered up a real, solid, true apology will attest that in doing so he/she releases him/herself from the very pain, discomfort, and shame he/she’d been avoiding.
14 FinallyOnce a good sincere apology has been delivered, results in the shift of power- the person offended is given the power to choose to forgive the person apologizing. Or not. For true forgiveness is itself an art, itself a subject worthy of study.