As a mom to young children, I never quite knew how to teach my kids to apologize. I knew what I didn’t want to do. I didn’t want to stand them face to face with the ‘victim ‘and make them utter an insincere “I’m sorry”.
How could I teach them to apologize correctly when I didn’t know how to give an appropriate apology myself? I would like think the reason for this was because I never needed to exercise that skill, but I think we all know that is not the case. We all need to be able to convey a sincere apology, and we need to teach our children how to do so.
I came across this apology method at CuppaCocoa.com. I wish I had read it 25 years ago! It would have spared me many sloppy attempts at saying I am sorry.
4 Steps to a Genuine Apology
1.) I’m sorry for…: Be specific.The other person wants to know you know how you hurt them.
2) This is wrong because…: Help the offender understand why what they did was wrong. Show the person you hurt that you really understand how they feel.
3) In the future, I will…: Use positive language, and say what you WILL do, not what you won’t do.
4) Will you forgive me? It’s important to try to restore your relationship. There is no guarantee that the other person will forgive you. Sometimes, they won’t. Ask anyway.
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