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Need The Perfect Apology Letter or Verbal Apology?

Make amends and repair relationships with our sample apology letters for both personal & business situations. Learn the most effective & creative ways to say I'm sorry with a verbal mea culpa.

Find free samples, examples and templates to help you deliver the perfect apology to your girlfriend, boyfriend, husband, wife, friends, family, customers, clients & partners.


Metal framed green compass faceIT'S ALL HERE— How-Tos & Guides for both apology letters and verbal apologies, business apology strategies & research, and hundreds of inspiring personal apology letters.

Best of all, if you'd like to, you can post your own apology letter right here on the site.

We all make mistakes, but it's our ability to clean up and make things right again that defines us as successful individuals. By delivering a sincere apology, we not only earn respect from those we've wronged, but we also show ourselves to be compassionate and responsible human beings while significantly reducing any, or even all, of the damage done.

Effective Apology Strategies

Learn the secrets and techniques of professional writers, scholars, publicists, and public relations experts.

Requesting forgiveness demands more than simply saying a few words. The trick to achieve positive results is to ask at the appropriate time and in the appropriate manner, either through a carefully crafted apology letter or a genuine and honest verbal apology.

Are you in the doghouse?
Is a loved one giving you the look?
Are you getting the silent treatment?
Did you forget an important date?
Did you hurt or betray someone?
Are the police about to come knocking?

How do you make someone understand how sorry you really are? What works and what doesn't? What triggers forgiveness?

It's easy once you know how to apologize and say sorry?

Need a Business Apology Strategy?

Visit our business apology section and read our apology case studies to learn how important the surrounding elements are for an effective apology, whether written or verbal.

Are you in trouble at work?
Do you need to apologize to your boss?
Are you trying to craft the perfect business apology letter?
Are customers looking to your competitors for help?
Did you miss an important meeting?
Have you let down your staff or customers?

An apology quote by Margaret Lee Runbeck alongside a cup of tea


Dedicated Apology Letter Section

Learn how to write an apology letter and how to apologize effectively.

Get inspired by hundreds of personal letters of apology written by husbands, wives, girlfriends, boyfriends, friends & family who've posted their apologies for the world to see.

And, for those in search of business mea culpas, use one of our business apology letter templates to craft and tailor your own.

➤  See our full list of friends & family apology letters.

General Apology & Letter FAQ

Below are a few of the more common questions we get asked about apologies in general and apology letters more specifically.

What's an apology?

An apology is a way of acknowledging and expressing your regret and remorse for hurting someone and understanding the impact of your actions and/or words.

As part of an apology, the words I apologize is the admission of your wrongdoing while the words I'm sorry convey your regret.

In all cases and all situations, an apology is the first step in making things right again.

Why do we need to apologize?

Apologizing is about taking responsibility for your behavior and acknowledging how your words or actions affected others. It shows respect and empathy while validating the feelings of the person you offended.

How to apologize sincerely?

A sincere apology needs to let the recipient know that you clearly understand the impact and hurt you caused by your actions. Saying I know I hurt you is different from I can understand how angry and betrayed you feel...

I know I hurt you shows a general understanding, while explaining the hurt by acknowledging the anger and betrayal tells the recipient that you've put yourself in their shoes and given thought to the consequences of your actions.

What's the difference between I'm sorry and I apologize?

I apologize is only an admission of your being at fault, it doesn't tell the recipient how you feel about what you did. Saying I'm sorry, on the other hand, tells the recipient that you both acknowledge the negative impact your words or actions caused but also that you have empathy and feel badly about it what happened and how it affected the injured party.

What's a letter of apology?

An apology letter is the act of writing out and expressing your regret and remorse. It's a means of conveying your feelings, taking full responsibility for your actions, acknowledging the hurt or damage done, and attempting to make the situation right again.

What should I write in an apology letter?

Start your letter by apologizing, saying you're sorry, describe exactly what happened and the impact of your actions. Explain how you much you regret the hurt you caused and ask for forgiveness. For a template and best practices read our article on how to write an apology letter.

Is it better to write an apology letter or apologize in person?

An apology letter gives you time to gather your thoughts and think about what you're writing. It also gives the recipient time to think about what you've written before responding. In comparison, apologizing in person requires that you think on your feet and be prepared for the conversation that follows your apology, and the recipient's reaction whether it be negative or positive.

A two-tiered approach, especially in business and for personal situations where serious infractions occured, is often the best choice. You begin with a letter of apology and follow up with a meeting to discuss the situation.

Should business apologies be treated differently from personal ones?

The basic elements that make up a sincere apology remain the same for both personal and business situations. However, there are strategic reasons and sometimes even legal issues that require consideration when a business offers a mea culpa or writes a business apology letter that are rarely true for personal situations.

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Remember, "to err is human..." and for every mistake there is a perfect apology!

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