The other day I received an email from someone who had been irritated by one of my blog posts.

I read her concerns carefully and crafted a response that began, “I’m sorry you were upset by what I said.“

After I sent the email, I realized that I had not really apologized.

My apology was actually a “passive aggressive apology.“

Whenever we say “I’m sorry you…“ we are not really apologizing.

We’re putting the issue back on the other person rather than assuming responsibility, which is implied by a genuine apology.

Notice how often you use the passive aggressive apology and strive to be more genuine when you apologize.