Sometimes apologies are appropriate. Sometimes an apology must be followed by some form of compensation and/or a promise not to do something again, especially if there is physical damage or you have done something very bad or very wrong.
You should apologize IF–
you make an unintentional mistake,
offend someone who unintentionally made a mistake or did something wrong,
offend someone with harsh criticism, insults, put downs, name calling, humiliation, or ridicule,
don’t fulfill a promise,
don’t fulfill a responsibility,
are late for an appointment,
damage someone’s personal property,
miss a deadline,
provide incorrect or incomplete information,
unintentionally bump into someone,
show up in casual attire to a formal occasion,
miss an appointment, and
fail to include someone or inform them.
There are many other situations where you may feel like apologizing but it is really not necessary.
You don’t have to apologize IF-
You are promoting yourself in some project and need support from others whom you have to ask for minimal help.
Someone is physically in your way and you have to ask them to move.
You are doing your job or asking others to do theirs.
You have different opinions and beliefs than others.
You are dressed casually and look casual for ordinary events.
You cancel plans with proper notice.
You are appropriately emotional and not too emotional for a given situation or circumstance.
You nag since what has to be done is not getting done and force and reasoning is not an option.
You interrupt or try to change the subject during a monopolizing or very trivial meeting or conversation.
You don’t promptly respond to mundane communications because you are busy or have more important things to do.
You ask someone to stop doing something incredibly annoying.
You are asking for help or a small favor.
You are asking for a raise.
You are asking questions which are not very personal to acquaintances.
You are not perfect since no one is.
Your lifestyle is different from the norm.
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