Do the apologies you are giving or receiving feel empty? Does it seem like the same things are being apologized for over and over again? This often happens when the apology is just saying the words, “I’m sorry,” rather than actually holding meaning and action.
There are three components that make up an effective apology. These components can be remembered by using the acronym EAR.
E-Empathy: The offender needs to show that they understand the depth of pain they caused.
A-Accountability: The offender needs to acknowledge that the offended party had a right to expect more from them (i.e., not “I’m sorry you’re so thin-skinned/can’t take a joke/ etc).
R-Restitution: The offender needs to demonstrate that they don’t just want to heal the damage done, but actually make the situation better than it was before by working to find ways and create a plan to prevent the offense from happening again.
Do you need help giving or getting a good apology? Are there people in your life who seem like they can’t follow these steps? Check out these resources: