A couple had a fight, and now their relationship is on the rocks, it means their relationship is in a very dangerous place, it's hanging by a thread, they might break up forever, or they might get divorced.
"Is there anything they can do to heal their relationship? The simple answer is APOLOGIZE."
I think this is maybe the most important topic in the world. How to apologize? This is so important for making peace and ask yourself, can there be forgiveness without apology? Do you think it's even possible to forgive someone when there is no apology? An apology is like a key that unlocks forgiveness. When you're really hurt, your heart is locked, and you need to hear a certain apology in order to unlock your forgiveness so you can be happy again. I have some great ideas that will really help you know solve almost any situation you get yourself in. I'm gonna give you ten steps.
Step #1 Apologize Quickly
As soon as you realize that you've hurt someone apologize right away. The longer you wait, the bigger the problem will become. Trust me, if you don't apologize right away, then it's going to fester. When there's a problem in your heart that is not dealt with, then it festers, and that's bad. Also, the longer you wait, the more awkward it will be to apologize. Imagine if you tell your friend, "Hey, you know last year when I did that to you, hey, I'm just sorry about that." see, it's a little bit awkward if you wait a whole year. Why did you wait a year? Why not right away, so try to do it as quickly as you can.
Step #2 Apologized Sufficiently
What does this mean? I think this is a very big problem that a lot of people have. Let's say the offense is 100%, and the apology is only 60%, is that going to unlock the forgiveness in the person's heart? No, that's gonna make it even worse. For example, let's say I call your grandma a fat pig. Whoa, that is a huge offense right, and then let's say, later on, I say, "Oh, hey, sorry about that." Is that enough is that going to help? No, in fact, that is going to make it even worse. The apology always has to be more than the offense, more not even equal, always make sure you apologize enough so that you can unlock that. If it's not enough, it's not going to unlock that. So always remember to apologize e-enough sufficiently.
Step #3 Show Emotion
This is the most important key. I know some people are not emotional, they never cry, they're just very emotionless. Some people need to feel the emotion from the other person. So try to show emotion, if it's a very serious thing that you've done to someone else then cry, if you can't cry it's OK just try to show it, "hey I am so so sorry you know about the things I said about your grandma." Try to sound sorry in your voice.
Step #4 Take Ownership
There was once a girl who apologized to me this way, "I'm so sorry you feel that way." This is the worst apology in the world, why is it bad because it's saying "I'm sorry you..." because there's nothing to do with me, you need to say "I'm sorry I..." if you say "I'm sorry you..." that's just shifting the blame, you're basically saying it's your fault for feeling this way. Don't do that, say, "I'm sorry I did this" that way you're taking ownership of the problem.
Step #5 Name The Offense
Name it, say what you did, this means basically state whatever you did to hurt that person, for example, you could say this "I'm so sorry I called your grandma a fat pig" you're naming what it was that hurt the other person.
Step #6 Acknowledge The Hurt
Acknowledge what your offense actually did to that person; how did it hurt them? So you could say, "I'm so sorry I called your grandma a fat pig. I know that hurt you so much." That's good; you're acknowledging that what you did hurt the other person.
Step #7 Ask For Forgiveness
This shows that you want to make things right, you could say, "I'm so sorry I called your grandma fat pig. I know that hurt you so much. Will you forgive me?
Step #8 Rebuild Value
This is very, very important and I think this step is often just completely missed. Now when you offend someone, when you hurt someone, they can often feel like you don't care about them; they feel just maybe really low self-esteem; they don't feel valuable. They feel like you don't care, so what you need to do if you hurt someone is to rebuild the value there, you're not going to let the relationship go. So you can say this "I am so sorry I called your grandma a fat pig. I know that hurt you so much. Will you forgive me? Your friendship means so much to me. I would never want to lose you." You've just rebuilt value into the relationship, so now the person feels that they're not just going to be let go, they have a value. That feels good as a person to have that kind of value, so please remember this step when you apologize to someone.
Step #9 Show Eagerness To Change
Eagerness, not willingness, there's a difference between willingness and eagerness, if you're willing to change that almost means you have to be pushed to change or that means that you are doing them a favor, "I'm willing to do this for you. I don't have to do, but I'm willing" NO that's not what you want to show, you want to show eagerness YES I want to change so you could say this "I'm so sorry I called your grandma a fat pig. I know that hurt you so much. Will you forgive me? Your friendship means so much to me. I would never want to lose you. What can I do to fix this situation? That shows eagerness to do whatever you can to help heal the relationship.
Step #10 Listen
Just take some time to listen to what the other person says, that shows that you care about them, you're going to be intentional about what they say. You can just ask them - "What can I do to fix this?" if they say "hey, I would love it if you did this or that" listen to them and just try to heal, try to do whatever you can to heal this problem.
I am sure if you do these 10 steps, you can heal any hurt in the world. Sometimes there are deep hurts that have been going on for your whole life, maybe with your wife or your husband that run really deep. Well, I think these 10 steps will be the solution.
But it might not happen once if you go through all these steps and it still doesn't really change, you might just need to do it, again and again, just repeat the steps until you unlock that person's heart, that person's forgiveness.
Very often when someone is deeply hurt, they might say, "oh, that's OK, or I don't worry about it, that's alright, or it doesn't matter really" they're suffering pain and they're holding the heart inside. But they don't believe that you really care enough about it. So that's why if you get a response like that, don't give up, don't lose hope and don't get discouraged, just try again and again, just keep trying to get that forgiveness from that person, and I really think this is going to work for you.
#1 - Don't sound like a politician
Politicians are the worst at apologizing; they say things like "I regret saying that..." that's just cold and emotionless. Don't use the word "regret" it's like a very political sounding word instead say, "I'm so sorry..." that is a much better thing to say.
#2 - Don't miss or substitute any of the steps
You can't miss one, "oh I'm not going to do step four or step seven" NO, all of the steps have to be done for the key to be right, don't substitute any of the steps, I mean if you hurt someone and you think you're gonna buy them some flowers that will make everything OK like you'll say "Here you go honey, I love you so much" well they need an apology. You're not giving them an apology, you're giving them something else, so I think in most cases this is going to make it even worse because you're not doing what needs to be done. Now, flowers or any other gifts are great, they might help depending on the person, but you know I think it could also make things worse.
So please try just to focus on the apology itself, and I think that's really gonna work for you.