It"s never easy to say sorry. But it seems there is a way to ensure you won"t have to utter it twice.
Researchers have found the secret of getting your regret across is to direct it at someone"s right ear.
A study showed that when we"re furious, this ear becomes more receptive to sound.
Therefore, they claim, to calm someone down it makes sense to target your apology appropriately.
The finding fits with the right side of the body being controlled by the left side of the brain - the part we use when we"re cross.
The right ear"s ability to pick up sounds increased significantly when the men were angry but there was no change in the left ear, the journal Hormones and Behavior reports.
It is thought this is because the left side of the brain processes sounds that come in through the right ear. If anger activates it, noise from the right, but not the left, will be heard more keenly.
Previous research has shown that if you want to persuade someone to do something, you should also speak in their right ear.
Other research has shown that the left ear may be best for salesmen.
In a British study, sales teams used one of three headsets - left, right, both ears - for a day"s selling of insurance by telephone. Those who wore the headset on their left ear outsold the others.
Exactly why is not clear, but one theory is that sale staff who opt to use their right ear may be more likely to use logic for selling, while those who use the left may have a more intuitive and responsive relationship with clients
It is not just ears that are affected by the brain"s criss-cross method of controlling the body.
Studies show that right foot is more sensitive to tickling, than the left, the left cheek the more favourable one to kiss, and the left side is the favoured one for holding babies.