Save “I’m Sorry,” for When It’s Your Fault
Have you ever noticed how some people have difficulty saying “I’m sorry,” while others say it over and over several times a day? I have.
The funny thing about ”I’m sorry” is that it puts you on the defensive. It immediately admits fault because the person saying it must have something to be sorry for… unless that person is almost always – sorry.
“I’m sorry I bought the last muffin.”
“I’m sorry you are having a difficult day.”
“I’m sorry that it is going to rain at lunchtime today.”
You are not always sorry. Sure, there are times when you are responsible for something that caused someone else discomfort or a problem but there are other ways to express your compassion than putting yourself at a disadvantage.
“They should have made more muffins today.”
“Wow, you are having quite a day. Let’s talk.”
“If it rains today, we’ll have our lunch outside tomorrow.”
Save sorry for when you really made a mistake and were wrong. Then it is definitely time to swallow your pride and admit that you should have acted/said something differently.
Don’t try to get around it by making excuses or structuring the sentence to reflect the blame: “I’m sorry you were upset by what I did.”
If you did something that was not appropriate or actually rude or simply thoughtless, APOLOGIZE. Most people have it in them to forgive others. Just be careful so you don’t have to say “I’m sorry,” too often.
Then you really will be sorry.