Monday, June 25, 2012

How to accept an apology

How to accept an apology

Sadly, many people find it difficult to apologize. One of the reasons this might be true is because, when we do apologize, it's often accepted in a less than graceful manner. When this is the case, it takes some of the motivation away to continue apologizing, even when appropriate. This is a shame because most happy people will insist that both offering and receiving apologies are integral parts of growing emotionally.

When you offer an apology, you are opening the door to loving communication and a possible compromise, or perhaps even a solution. When apologies aren't accepted, bitterness and resentment often creep into the picture.

Granted, most of us will probably not be quite as visibly ungraceful in our acceptance of an apology. However, we might push people away in other, more subtle ways. We might, for instance, mumble under our breath, sigh, make a condescending comment such as "It's about time," or in some other way minimize or fail to fully accept the apology.

In most instances, an apology is an excellent opportunity to deepen our relationship or friendship. It's an ideal time to make a genuine effort to listen deeply and respectfully. It's a time to experience gratitude and empathy for the fact that the other person is willing to apologize, which is something not everyone is able to do. When we accept an apology, it makes it far more likely that our friend or partner will do the same for us when it's our turn to apologize.

The next time that someone offers an apology, see if you can really take it to heart. Soften your edges and open your heart.

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