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To Express Sincere Regret, Remorse

We’ve talked about forgiveness before, how important it is to forgive oneself and others so that true healing can happen. Yet as important as forgiveness is, an authentic, honest apology can go a long way towards healing a broken relationship.

How many times have you heard someone say, “I’m sorry I did that, but you don’t understand where I was coming from,” or “I’m sorry if I hurt your feelings, but I didn’t mean to,” or something along those lines? Though you know you should forgive, because the person who hurt you has apologized, something just doesn’t feel right. That’s because apologies that include the word “but” are passive-aggressive, shallow, and lay blame for the hurtful event on the person who was hurt. “I’m sorry but,” is the same as saying, “I’m sorry you’re so sensitive, but it’s not my problem.”

It takes tremendous courage to accept responsibility for a hurtful action, to bring our wrongdoings out into the open where they might be examined and scrutinized. When we expose our short-comings we make ourselves vulnerable to others — and there is no guarantee we will be forgiven. We are prideful creatures by nature, always wanting to be right, to do good, to be better than we are. It is frightening to admit when we have done something that has caused someone else pain. So we reap a benefit by making ourselves blind to our misdeeds. In a sense, we protect ourselves, even as we push those we love far away. But how can we grow and learn if we refuse to acknoweldge our mistakes and seek forgiveness?

Allyson from The Law Collaborative shared a wonderful article from The Jewish Journal about finding the true path to forgiveness through sincere apology. Check it out below and discover how we can strengthen our relationships when we match our actions to our words.

TRUE PATHS TO TESHUVAH, by Julie Gruenbaum Fax, Senior Writer