“I Love You” and “Sorry”

“I love you” and “sorry” are two phrases that mean substantially more when we put the “why” with them.

Think about what mean more to you…”I love you” vs. “I love how you always kiss me first thing in the morning.” When there is “why” behind the reason we love someone it feels more valid and demonstrates more thoughtfulness or consideration. “I love…” is thrown around so casually these days that as a stand alone phrase it carries less weight–we have become a little adapted to hearing it.

An apology that not only includes what you are sorry for, but why you are sorry carries more weight, again because it shows consideration. “I’m sorry” can sometimes feel like an attempt to get out of the doghouse or just an attempt to bring tension to an end. If you explain an understanding of why the thing for which you are apologizing was hurtful or offensive it demonstrates that you thought about your action–not just simply accepted that the person to whom you are apologizing did not like it. Consider “I am sorry that I hurt your feelings” vs. “I am sorry that I did not think about how my off-handed comment would make you feel.” There is more ownership in the second example and therefore it feels more genuine.

Demonstrate more thoughtfulness and your words will have more of an impact.

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About Denis "Woodja" Flanigan

A Licensed Psychologist in private practice in Houston, he received his M.S. in Psychology and Ph. D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Florida. He has over 10 years experience in working with high school and college students and adults in counseling centers, community mental health settings, and private practice addressing a wide range of psychological issues. He is an expert on non-traditional relationships and accepting of non-traditional belief systems.

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