Psychology Today says Empathy is...
"...the ability to recognize, understand, and share the thoughts and feelings of another person, animal, or fictional character. Developing empathy is crucial for establishing relationships and behaving compassionately. It involves experiencing another person’s point of view, rather than just one’s own, and enables prosocial or helping behaviors that come from within, rather than being forced."
We all connect with the concept of empathy in a different way. There are many ways we can communicate empathy through our behaviors. Which one's do you use?
- Listen to learn instead of waiting to talk
- Focus on them 100%
- Be in the moment with them
- Use their name
- Be kind, care & aware
- Imagine yourself in their situation
- Less judgement
- Acknowledge the person’s suffering, trauma, feelings
- Ask questions
- Don’t assume, seek clarity
- Project your intentions with great body language
- If you must, finish their sentence in your head
- Seek understanding
- Allow people to get "it" off their mind
- Get to know them
- It's all about them
- Smile more
- Suspend your beliefs
- Say “Thank you”
- Accept feedback
- It's OK to have disagreement
- Wait to give advice
- More “we” less “me”
- Look at it from different angles
- Keep your answers to yourself
- Be open
- Ask how you can help
Every person we meet is fighting a battle we know nothing about unless we ask. When we are there for others authentically, it provides the glue that holds our societies together. This is not weakness, it's the strength of great societies!