The Power of Apologies

Why is it so hard to say ‘I’m sorry?’ In part two of our series on forgiveness and apologies, we talk with psychologist Tyler Okimoto about the mental barriers that keep us from admitting when we’ve done something wrong, as well as the transformative power of apologies.

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Additional Resources

Knowing me, knowing us: Personal and collective self-awareness enhances authentic leadership and leader endorsement, Niklas Steffens, Nathan Wolyniec, Tyler Okimoto, Frank Mols, Alexander Haslam and Adam Kay, The Leadership Quarterly,  2021.

Embodied remorse: physical displays of remorse increase positive responses to public apologies, but have negligible effects on forgiveness, Matthew Hornsey, Michael Wohl, Emily A. Harris, Tyler Okimoto, Michael Thai, and Michael Wenzel, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology,  2019.

The power of grassroots expressions of remorse for promoting intergroup forgiveness, Tyler Okimoto, Matthew Hornsey and Michael Wenzel, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 2019.

Exploring new directions in self-forgiveness research: integrating self and other perspectives on moral repair, Mylyn Dat and Tyler Okimoto, Social Justice Research, 2018.

Apologies demanded yet devalued: Normative dilution in the age of apology, Tyler Okimoto, Michael Wenzel, Matthew Hornsey, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 2015.

Refusing to apologize can have psychological benefits (and we issue no mea culpa for this research finding), Tyler Okimoto, Michael Wenzel and Kyli Hedrick,

European Journal of Social Psychology, 2013.
Better Late than Early: The Influence of Timing on Apology Effectiveness, Cynthia Franze, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 2005.


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