I was reminded this morning of one of my pet peeves: apologies that don't take responsibility for anything. Regardless of the words that are spoken, the metamessage is something like this: Whoops! Bummer for you! That was someone else's fault! I forgot! That was an accident! (I think it's Caren's friend, Henry, who distinguishes for us that a meteor colliding with the planet is an accident.)These were common in the last community we were in, even and especially coming from leaders. When you've hurt someone, doing anything else but taking responsibility first just makes it worse. Are you sharing excuses? Then you're just trying to justify your actions. Taking responsibility makes it clean. Then further conversation is possible, including the part where you clean up your mess and make amends.How is it that so much of the world is walking around making these silly attempts at apologies? (Didn't we learn when we were six years old that just saying the word, "sorry", generally isn't good enough?) Is no one taught the basics of human relationship? It makes me wish there were a class I could send people to. In the meantime, here is your tip of the day:In my apology, am I taking responsibility for the impact I've had on this person? Am I acknowledging to them, out loud, what that impact has been? Once it feels clean, have I made amends to the past situation and told them what I can be counted on for in the future?Please. For the love of humanity, do this simple thing.