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Sunday, March 22, 2009

No No No ....

Already this morning I have heard from two very good friends alarmed by my last post figuring that it must relate to my life in some way ... although I'm sure in the past I have been in that situation I was talking from an abstract point of view ... so don't panic guys! :-)

However, what I was doing was setting up for my blog post today which is about the
Five languages of apology .....

1) Expressing Regret - “Expressing Regret” is the apology language that centres on emotional hurt. The person is admitting guilt and remorse for causing pain to the other person. They don't try to make an excuse, they take personal responsibility and with it they make a sincere commitment to rebuild the relationship. For people who need an apology in this way they look simply for “I’m sorry”

2) Accepting Responsibility - It is very difficult for some people to admit that they’re wrong. It makes them doubt their self-worth and no one likes to be seen as a failure. However, we all make mistakes, we are going to make bad judgements that hurt people sometimes, we are going to need to admit that we were wrong and to accept responsibility for our own failures.

For many people, all they want is to hear are the words, “I am wrong.” If the apology doesn't include accepting responsibility for their actions, many people won't feel that the apology was sincere. Many people need to learn how to overcome their ego, the desire to not be viewed as a failure, and simply admit that their actions were wrong. Being sincere in your apology means allowing yourself to be less than perfect, and admitting that you make mistakes. Though this may be hard to do for some people, it makes a world of a difference to your partner who speaks this language.

3) Make Restitution - In our society, many people believe that wrong acts deserve punishment and the person who did wrong should make right. In order to be sincere with this type of apology the person first needs to know the others love language to be able to make restitution. The specific love language needs to be used (Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Acts of Service, Physical Touch, and Receiving Gifts) to make this apology the most effective. Some people may feel as though all is forgotten with a bouquet of flowers, that may not necessarily work for the person that needs to hear they are loved.

For a mate whose primary apology language is making restitution, no matter how often you say “I’m sorry”, or “I was wrong”, your mate will never find the apology sincere. You must show strong efforts for making amends. A genuine apology will be accompanied by the assurance that you still love your partner and have a desire to right the wrong-doings committed.

4) Genuinely Repent - For some people, repentance is the main factor in an apology. Some people will doubt the sincerity of an apology if it's not accompanied by the other persons desire to alter their behavior to avoid the situation in the future. My mother used to say to us as children that sorry means you will never do it again.

One important aspect of genuine repentance is verbalising your desire to change. Though you may be trying to change inside, if you don't verbalise your desire to change to the other person then they will still be hurt. For this apology to work you need to set goals for the change. After you create realistic goals you can start implementing a plan to change. Taking small steps towards repentance instead of insisting on change all at once will increase your chances of successfully changing your ways.

Remember that change is hard. Constructive change is not always instantly successful. There will be highs and lows on the road to change. However,anyone can change their ways if they are truly and genuinely ready to repent.

5) Request Forgiveness - In some relationships, a person wants to hear the other person ask for forgiveness. They want the person to acknowledge that their is a need for forgiveness. By asking for forgiveness the person is really asking the other person to still love them. Asking for forgiveness shows the other person that you want to see the relationship fully repaired and proves to that person that you know you did something wrong and you are sincerely sorry for what you’ve done.

Requesting forgiveness means you are willing to put the future of the relationship in the hands of the other person. You are leaving the final decision up to them – to forgive or not forgive. Requesting forgiveness is a hard thing to do as it often leaves the person feeling vulnerable and with a fear of rejection. Many people find it hard to ask for forgiveness because it means admitting that you failed. However, realising that all people make mistakes at some point means that you are not alone in feeling like you have failed.

Remember don't treat forgiveness lightly. It is something to be cherished and appreciated. The act of forgiveness is hard on both ends – for the person who’s asking and for the person who’s accepting.

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