drop the ball (American, informal)
to make a mistake, especially by doing something in a stupid or careless way.
Cambridge International Dictionary of Idioms © Cambridge University Press 1998
I’m writing today about something most of us have done done, usually both in life and in our careers. There is a reason for the timing of my writing since we are coming to a Holiday weekend. A time where we juggle more and an opportunity for either work or personal promises are forgotten or dropped.
Perhaps when you have “dropped the ball” you felt a little something like the guy above….becoming someone else or a shell of someone else when attempting to recover the “drop”.
You may be tempted to devise some little lie….. or even a large fabrication to pass the blame on to someone else or some situation that deemed you blameless. This turns your human error into an intentional act of deceit and usually doesn’t sit well with either you or the person who suffered your fumble.If they believe you, you achieve only that lie. If they don’t believe you, you lose trust forever. In either situation, you learn nothing.
There is a vast difference between feeling like a failure, and actually being one.
-Brian G. Jett
If you want to do the right thing it’s best to be honest.
Believe it or not, there is a wrong way to do the right thing. There is an etiquette to follow.
Neglecting to apologize….(Or, neglecting to apologize properly)-Admitting you were to blame for an error is a great thing, but if you neglect to apologize for it you may send the message that you don’t care about the damage it caused. “I’m Sorry” or “I Apologize” say to a person that you did not intend to cause any negative consequence.
It is very important that you are sincere with your apologies. Saying,
“Hey, Sorry I missed the deadline. I’ll git ya caught up right now!”,
is NOT an apology.
“I don’t care that you were inconvenienced”
“I don’t need your forgiveness”.
It also implies that it can and probably will happen again.
I found a terrific site on the “Art of Apology”. Perfect Apology
This site goes into detail on the best way to apologize.
It is a great asset to those that don’t have naturally warm sensibilities or who have anxieties over saying “the right thing”.
Also check out Life Learning Today on How to Recover from a Fumble at Work.
In business, the inability to recover from errors could mean a loss of accounts and financial suffering.
In our personal lives it means being misunderstood and the suffering of loneliness.
Or, Madonna’s thoughts on saying sorry….