-Write it if you can’t say
Sometimes our
embarrassment or pride
prevents us from going in
person to apologize to
someone. While a face to
face apology is always
ideal, if you absolutely
can’t do it, then it’s better
to get it out then not do it
at all. And sometimes a
letter or note is actually a
superior medium to talking
because it allows you to
express all of your feelings
without forgetting what you
want to say or running the
risk of setting off another
-Use humor when
Some self-
deprecating humor can
break the tension and
cause you both to laugh.
I’ve found that drawing
little cartoons of me and my
mishap can instantly
dissipate my wife’s anger.
Note that I said, when
appropriate. If you cheated
on your girlfriend, don’t
crack jokes or make
cartoons about it. “And see
in this panel, that’s me
making out with your best
-Be sincere;
This is the
cardinal rule of apologies.
An insincere apology is in
some ways worse than no
apology at all. The
person’s hurt over your
offense will merely be
compounded by their anger
at your hypocrisy. An
insincere apology may take
the form of saying you’re
sorry but saying it in such
a way that your lack of
contrition is patently
manifest. Another form is
the famous “I’m sorry
you’re sorry” apology.
This apology admits no
fault but pretends like
saying you’re sorry that
the person was hurt or is
angry is still pretty big of
you. Don’t bother; it will
make the person want to
stab with you a trident.
-Take complete
Never,ever make any excuses
while you’re apologizing.
They instantly ruin the
weight and sincerity of your
confession. Don’t use any
“buts.” As in “I’m really
sorry that happened,
but….” A man takes full
responsibility for his
Express your
understanding of why
you were wrong and
the weight of your
A person wants
to know that you fully
understand the
seriousness of the
situation, that you have
thought through exactly
why what you did was
wrong and the full
consequences of your
actions. Nobody wants to
hear an apology from
someone who clearly
doesn’t know why they’re
in the wrong but feels like
apologizing is what they’re
“supposed” to do.
-Offer to make restitution.
This is a key
part of the apology
process. You should almost
always offer to try in any
way you can to make up for
your misdeed. This
obviously isn’t always
possible. If you break your
wife’s 5th generation family
heirloom vase, you can’t go
to Target and buy a
replacement. But if a
situation can be fixed and
rectified, that you should
pledge to do whatever it
takes to do so.
Pledge better behavior
in the future.
Notice that
I said pledge and not
promise. While some would
argue that if you’re really
sorry, you’ll never make
the same mistake again,
our failings as human
beings dictates otherwise. I
might be truly sorry for
losing my temper on
someone, but I’m pretty
sure that no matter how
hard I try, it’s probably
going to happen again
somewhere down the line.
When you promise someone
that something is never
going to happen again,
you’re setting yourself up
for a huge rift to develop if
it does. The person will be
justifiably doubly hurt,
because after all, “You
promised!” There are of
course some things that
you can be almost 100%
sure you’ll never do again,
and if you feel absolutely
confident in that, then make
a promise. But generally
you should simply pledge
that you’re going to be
working hard on fixing
whatever personality or
behavioral faults led to
your current offense. You
can promise that you’re
going to be making an
effort to change and turn
things around.
-Prove your contrition
with your actions.
In the
end, words will matter very
little if your actions don’t
match them. After you’ve
apologized, stop dwelling
on it. Simply start acting in
a way that demonstrates
the sincerity of your
-Move on;
Once you’ve
given your sincere
apology, don’t apologize
again. Having you
continually apologize may
be what the offended party
thinks they want from you
and it may make them feel
better in the short term. But
in the long term, it’s going
to ruin the relationship. If
you continue to grovel then
you’ll always be in the
inferior position instead of
having the person treat
you like an equal. Deep
down they won’t be
respecting you as a man.
Either the person accepts
your apology or they don’t.
If they do, then there’s no
need to keep groveling. If
they don’t, then the person
doesn’t trust you and the
relationship has other
problems that need to be



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