Admitting mistakes - how to apologize properly

Reading time 5 minutes
Admitting mistakes - how to apologize properly

In some phases, you make one mistake after another. Can you admit such mistakes? Or do you find it difficult? Many people prefer to conceal their weaknesses. Otherwise their boss might get angry or their colleagues might start bullying them. But excuses and lies are not a good solution: learn to deal with mistakes confidently. It's better for everyone, including you.

The art of admitting mistakes: a sign of strength

Everyone makes mistakes. Those who supposedly don't make any are fooling themselves. Or at least the others.

admit faults is a talent that you can train. For this you need Self-confidence and courage. After all, you don't know beforehand how the others will react.

This is precisely why you feel a certain strength when you admit your own mistakes. There is also a certain amazement: your environment often reacts positively to this.

In fact, there are many opportunities in mistakes. It's logical: after all, you learn something from mistakes. It also promotes communication and therefore understanding.

Why it is so difficult to admit mistakes

Mistakes are stupid, but unavoidable. A clever Dealing with errors requires a certain amount of self-confidence. The problem, however, is that many people are perfectionists. Failure can hardly be avoided.

Nobody can do everything right. But if you deny mistakes or blame others, you're not doing yourself any favors. It usually only makes things worse.

Nevertheless, there is the Fearthat you will hurt other people through your mistakes - or be rejected yourself. So you try to cover up your mistakes. This immediately leads to the next problem: if you don't talk about them, you won't be able to correct them or learn from them.

Admitting mistakes in relationships: the key to reconciliation

When you can admit mistakes in your relationship, you build Trust up. Sounds paradoxical? But it is. You forgot to go shopping? Admit it and run again - or order something from the delivery service. Don't start an argument about it.

Talk about your priorities: they are more important than small mistakes. Otherwise, you run the risk of continuing to deny a slip-up (or even a sin of omission). This is exactly how mosquitoes become elephants.

Personality development: What admitting mistakes reveals about your character

Whether you can admit mistakes depends on your character. With the Personality Test of Greator you can find out more about your behavior patterns. You have no problem talking about your mistakes? So much the better! Do you feel totally insecure depending on the situation? Then you can work on yourself: Personal development is the keyword.

Admitting mistakes Speeches

Admitting mistakes Sayings: Words of wisdom

The following Sayings about mistakes show you that even smart people have their difficulties. They also help you to deal with them in a more relaxed way.

  • "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." (Albert Einstein)
  • "Don't look for mistakes, look for solutions." (Henry Ford)
  • "The biggest mistake you can make in life is to always be afraid of making a mistake." (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)
  • "Where there are mistakes, there is also experience." (Anton Pavlovich Chekhov)
  • "He who has made a mistake and does not correct it, commits a second one." (Confucius)
  • "To cover a mistake with a lie is to replace a stain with a hole." (Aristotle)

Psychological barriers: Why some people can't admit their mistakes

Do you have a personality disorder if you can't admit your mistakes? It's usually not quite that bad. First of all, nobody wants to be berated for their mistakes. So it's only natural that children and even adults sometimes fudge or cover things up.

Those who cannot admit mistakes are often unsafe and sensitive. Inferiority complexes make the situation even worse.

What about your self-image? Do you have extreme Guilt and feel threatened by your own ideal image? How successful are your efforts and how realistic are your dreams?

Narcissism and other psychological disorders influence the way you deal with mistakes and your environment. It is therefore worth taking a closer look - not only at yourself, but also at other people.

5 steps to become better at admitting mistakes

You know that you should admit mistakes and apologize for them. But how does that work? Here you will receive specific Tips on how to admit mistakes you can.

  1. Show responsibility: Don't blame someone else, but stand up for your own mistakes. Show your strength and admit that it was ultimately down to you. Incidentally, this also saves Timebecause this eliminates the need to look for a scapegoat.
  2. Take stock: What have you messed up? How bad is the situation - how can the problem you caused be solved? You may need to get others on board to help you fix the problem.
  3. Discuss mistakes: In companies with a well-functioning error culture, managers and colleagues are tolerant and solution-oriented. If you talk about your mistakes, you are already starting to correct them. You may not be solely to blame, but you should be careful how you communicate this. Apologies are good - but they don't have to be exaggerated.
  4. Propose solutions: Once you have admitted your mistake, present a proposed solution immediately afterwards. That's a good idea! This way you signal your sense of responsibility on the one hand and your commitment on the other.
  5. Show optimism: Don't act meek and don't beat yourself up when you have to admit mistakes. Realize that mistakes are there for you to learn from. Don't think about it all the time, but look ahead. You won't make that mistake again next time!

A better error culture with coaching

Anyone who has to admit mistakes needs the necessary strength to do so. In most cases, however, it is almost impossible to overcome your own fear and insecurity. A coach can provide practical tips for typical error situations.

Above all, it is about admitting your own mistakes. At first, this is unpleasant and sometimes even painful. You don't want to step on anyone's toes in the family and you're afraid of bad consequences at work.

An Personality Coaching helps you to analyze your mistakes and train how to deal with them. As is so often the case, the focus is on trusting communication. Self-image and individual personal development also play a role.

Communication techniques that make it easier to admit mistakes

Do you want to admit a mistake but don't know how to start? Asking for forgiveness goes down well with most people, even strict bosses. Because they usually don't like it when you try to pull the wool over their eyes. Honest communication therefore earns you points.

Admitting mistakes and apologizing usually works according to the following pattern:

  1. You talk about the error,
  2. You explain what happened (honestly, without apportioning blame or making excuses),
  3. You admit that it was your mistake, and take responsibility,
  4. You show your regret/repentance,
  5. You offer a proposed solution, reparation or change in behavior,
  6. You ask for Pardon.

Attempts at bribery or exaggerated words tend to destroy the trust that still exists. This makes the apology seem dishonest.

The explanation is about a factual summary. Make sure you don't get lost in excuses! And an apology alone is not always enough. To be on the safe side, ask again if everything is okay.

Conclusion: Admitting mistakes as a path to personal and interpersonal growth

How you deal with mistakes is directly related to your personality. Are you aware of your own misconduct? Or do you think that someone else is responsible for it?

Work on your individual Error culture. Learn to apologize honestly and speak openly. Admitting mistakes is an important skill in both your private life and your professional career. So it's worth practising it! This will help you achieve success step by step - and you can look forward to positive reactions.


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Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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