What's your most common excuse

We have to stop apologizing!

Sorry Excuse me. Forgiveness. I'm sorry. Don't hold it against me. We know an incredible number of words to make an apology. Sometimes it is long, sometimes it is short, sometimes it comes from the heart and sometimes we are forced to do it. But the most common type of apology is also arguably the worst: habit. Almost automatically, we apologize for things we don't have to apologize for.

"Stop apologizing!" - "Okay, sorry."

I was once told: "You are such a person who apologizes when someone bumps into you." At first I had to laugh about it because it is totally true. But then I started to think about how often I apologize unnecessarily. For example, when I send a voice message to a friend that lasts more than five minutes. Then I send her two (or even eleven) big “Sorry!” Afterwards. Most of the time she starts her message with: “Stop apologizing.” And I swear, it's on my tongue again. "I do l ..."

I once tried to pay attention when I say “sorry” everywhere in everyday life. I say “sorry” when I'm in the way, even though I'm not really doing it. I apologize at the checkout if it takes me 10.5 seconds longer to get my two cents coins out. If I have a different opinion than a friend, I usually start my arguments with: “Sorry, I see it differently”. Or the classic: “Sorry, I just have to go to the toilet.” Why do I even apologize for the natural urge to go to the toilet?

Women apologize more often

Such a quiet and quick "sorry" slips over your lips very quickly. And some people may now also think: Um, yes and? Isn't it polite? But no, these automatic apologies have absolutely nothing to do with politeness. They are trained, say a lot about the character and also have something to do with whether you are a woman.

In 2011, Canadian Karin Schumann wrote her doctoral thesis on apologizing at Waterloo University. One of their findings was that women were more likely than men to apologize. The men simply saw no need for apology in the same situations. Some read from the study that women are just more sensitive and that men should therefore apologize more often in order to keep the peace of the house.

Stereotypical and trained excuses

It's nice that we have developed further over the past nine years and can ask ourselves: What is the structural problem behind this? How far will we be made to apologize early on? A good example of this is the well-known sex excuse. Almost all of us grew up with the stereotype that men want sex more often than women. The annoyed wives then let their husbands roll their eyes from time to time in the stories or just say that they have a headache.

Perhaps this is because women often apologize when it comes to sex:

  • "Sorry, I'm not in the mood right now, sorry."
  • “Sorry, I'm not taking the pill. You have to wear a condom. "
  • "Sorry, I'm just having my days and the menstrual cup is sitting really well, I don't want to take it out now."
  • "Sorry, I am not shaved."

, not sorry

What is being apologized for and what does that have to do with politeness? We encounter these and other superfluous excuses all the time. In our relationships, friendships, within families and with strangers on the street. Therefore: stop apologizing! For your opinions, for your mood and, above all, for situations for which you cannot do anything at all. Just give it a try and leave out your trained excuses in everyday life.


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