10/20/2011 11:31 EDT | Updated 12/20/2011 05:12 EST

Why Is it So Hard to Say "I'm Sorry"?


Why is it so difficult to say the three little words "I am sorry?" It goes a long way, but often too many times people struggle with uttering those words. Recently, Heidi Grant Halvorson, PhD, offered some useful suggestions on how best to apologize. However, sometimes, the real problem begins with admitting and acknowledging we were wrong.

Try as we may, none of us are perfect. We come with flaws and shortcomings I like to refer to as our character. We may like to present ourselves in a fashion that masks our true character, but with time the truth is always revealed. So, why not embrace our character, instead of hiding from it?

I believe it might have something to do with that devious thing called PRIDE. Pride has a way of preventing humility to shine through and allow one to open one's mouth and authentically say "I am sorry."

If you stop and think about it, it is kind of pitiful because admitting one's shortcoming usually carries with it an understanding and acceptance from the other party. However, being too proud to say you're sorry really causes one to lose respect. Indeed, pride carries with it a heavy penalty!

I'll be the first to admit there have been times I've struggled with saying I'm sorry or admitting I was wrong. Personally, there is something that makes you feel less of yourself or capabilities. Ironically, when I think of the times people have apologized to me, I can't help having a greater respect and admiration for them, in spite of their shortcomings.

Perhaps instead of noticing the shortcomings of others we should spend more time noticing our own imperfections and, when justly wrong, not stumble with saying "I'm sorry."

Some food for thought,