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October 7, 2019

Don't Apologize

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Don’t say you're sorry.  This doesn’t mean, however, to not admit when you’re at fault. I think communicating to someone that things didn’t meet expectations is extremely important.  It’s all about how that gets communicated, whether it be from a scarcity mindset, or an abundance mindset.

If you say “I’m sorry”, it suggests that it was an entirely negative experience. It presents the situation as a burden or a misfortune that you need to apologize for. This comes from a scarcity mindset because it implies that there’s not enough to go around, and you need to make amends for what you took from them, which could be their time, energy, money, or emotions.

The alternative is to approach the situation from an abundance mindset. The counterintuitive part is that you can still acknowledge something didn’t go to plan and be positive about it. For example, if you were late to something, instead of saying "I’m sorry for being late", say "I appreciate your patience". What this does is it takes the negative affect from the circumstance and reframes it to highlight a positive part of it. You choose to mention a positive quality that was put on display as a result of the error. Not only does it make the mistake you’re apologizing for seem less significant, but it helps reduce the interpersonal tension moving forward.   

I love this idea because I’m guilty of it, and just starting to bring my own awareness to it. So, the next chance you get, when you’re about to apologize and say you’re sorry, think about how else you can communicate the same message, but in a positively framed way!

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