The best way to apologize (according to science)
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Delivering a good apology requires one to first recognize the right moments and reasons to apologize, and then properly employ each of the foundational elements of an apology. While the Association for Psychological Science lists six key facets of an apology, other sources pare it down to fewer ingredients. Regardless, accepting responsibility and offering some kind of amends make their way into all iterations of a suitable mea culpa.
Psychologists have found correlations between certain personality traits — such as honesty, humility, and guilt proneness — with the proclivity to apologize. Apology avoiders, in turn, are often protective of self-image, or generally perceive an apology as an ineffective course of action. Whether or not an apology is issued, however, the wronged party always has the choice to forgive. To learn more about the concept of forgiveness, read this article published by Michigan State University titled Forgiveness: What is it and how do I do it?
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