There is power in saying, I was wrong. There is power in saying, I messed up. There is power in an apology.
The time spent defending and deflecting the truth, in reality should be focused on reconciling. It is not about the intention, it is about how you make the person feel.
In order to be a good leader, husband, father, team player, in any business or in any relationship. You have to find a way to apologize and find a way, to admit when wrong.
[3 Steps to a Contrite Heart]
1. You must be truly sorry (sorrowful). You have to understand the wrong you have cause and be resolute to make it right. The admission of wrong must come from a place of genuine sorrow. The words alone will add insult to injury.
2. You must apologize for the infraction, this is a more formal or professional way to rectify a wrong and it situation dependent. Remember the subject sees and hears differently than do. So a strong apology may be preferable over personal sorrow.
3. Now, you must ask for their forgiveness. This is where the power dynamics shift from you to them. It makes a stronger case for your efforts to ask, then to assume you remorse is received. Depending on the nature of the relationship, their unwillingness to forgive may be a part of healing processes.
[I am Sorry VS I apologize]
Here are my thoughts on, “I’m sorry Vs I apologize”.
I’m am sorry ( I am sorrowful) is based on the word sore, meaning full of pain or hurt based on a situation, action or outcome.
I apologize, is based in the defense or justification of a philosophy or behavior.
For example, a person that defends the gospel is referred to as a (christian) ‘apologist’.
The First Known use of sorry: before the 12th century, in the meaning defined as:
1: feeling sorrow, regret, or penitence
2: MOURNFUL, SAD
3: inspiring sorrow, pity, scorn, or ridicule : PITIFUL, their affairs were in a sorry state
The history for sorry is the Middle English (sory), from Old English (sārig), from sār sore: meaning suffering.
Originally, I apologize was not associated with, “I am sorry”. It was attached later.
“If you encounter an apology anywhere in the 16th century chances are very good that the word is indicating a defense or justification” ….
In summary, the phase, “I am sorry’ expresses a deeper level of regret, than the phrase, ‘I apologize’.
This is due, to the fact, at it’s core, an apology is a defending and justifying of behavior versus articulating sorrow for it.
2 Corinthians 7:9-11
I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter.