i am all about a good assessment, especially if can help improve the communication in my relationships whether those are with friends, family, partners or coworkers. while i have talked extensively about the 5 love languages both on this blog and on my instagram live sessions (there is one tonight, by the way at 7pm pst), i have yet to cover apology languages. because gary chapman is brilliant, he decided to take it a step further and write a book on apology languages that i think pairs excellently with the 5 love languages.
similar to the 5 love languages, there are 5 apology languages. the major difference between the two is that the love languages are on a 30 point scale whereas the apology languages are on a 20 point scale. generally, people have one or two dominant languages. however, even if you have a low number for one of them, it does not mean it is unimportant, it is just not your preferred method of apologies in most cases. now, let’s go over each of the five apology languages:
- accept responsibility – this means it is important for you to hear the other person set aside their pride and simply admit their wrongdoing paired with a sincere apology
- expressing regret – this is more about admitting both guilt and shame while taking ownership (this one is often done best in person so the person receiving the apology can see the sincerity in body language)
- genuinely repent – this is about both feeling the hurt that was caused and also making a real plan to modify that behavior moving forward so there is not a repeat of the same scenario
- make restitution – this type of apology requires justification for the actions in question and also requires knowledge of the preferred love language of the person being apologized to so that can be paired with said justification
- request forgiveness – this is assurance for the person receiving it that there is awareness of wrongdoing and it is important enough to not only address but to ask for forgiveness which places the ball in the court of the person receiving the apology
in reading those descriptions, is there one that sounds the most like you? i know there were a couple that stood out to me. even though i took this assessment a couple of years ago, i took it again to see if there were any shifts and my apology languages have evolved with me.
make restitution – 8
accept responsibility – 6
expressing regret – 3
genuinely repent – 3
request forgiveness – 0
i am clearly a woman of extremes based on this point distribution. but when i thought about the apologies that have meant the most to me, the things they all have in common are an explanation of what led them to making the decision they made, taking accountability, informing me of a plan to avoid us being in this predicament in the future and it all being sincere. i don’t necessarily need groveling and while words are great, without action, they are meaningless.
have you already taken the assessment? if not, you can do so here.
to buy the 5 languages of apology book (“when sorry isn’t enough”), head over to amazon. you can snag a paperback copy for about 10 bucks. for my people out there that don’t love reading, it is also available on audible.