Many of us have a bad conversational habit of saying “I’m sorry” on a regular basis without even thinking about it. We say, ‘I’m sorry, I didn’t hear you,” or “I’m sorry, are you busy right now?” Although we say it in an effort to be polite, it sounds like we’re apologizing.
I remember a former supervisor once telling me how her airline reservations had gotten mixed up and she would have to change her travel plans. She seemed quite upset, so I said “I’m so sorry that happened.” She looked at me rather surprised and said “Why are you apologizing? It wasn’t your fault.” Of course that’s not how I meant it, but that’s how it sounded.
When you say you’re sorry all the time, it sounds as if you’re taking the blame for everything that happens. It’s annoying to many people, and it makes you seem like a self-appointed scapegoat not to mention submissive. Don’t say “I’m sorry” unless you’ve done something for which you truly need to apologize.
©Donna Cardillo. All rights reserved.