Have you ever had the experience of someone really being there for you? Listening intently, being present with your sharing, not going into their own story or judging you?
If so, then you already know how powerful and healing this experience is. When we are truly empathised with, the emotional pain that we are in lightens and often disappears completely.
Every good professional who works in a caring role, practices empathy. Every good businessperson or leader, who understands that they need to connect with their client or team before making a request, practices empathy.
And when you truly care about someone, your natural state is to drop into empathy with them.
As humans we are born to connect. But somewhere along the way, we have lost our way. We have isolated ourselves into our houses (especially in urban areas) and only connect with others when we have to. We have to pay someone to get the empathy we need. And in that session, we don't learn how to offer empathy to others, because the focus is still on us and our pain.
How Do We Fix This?
By coming together and learning how to practice real empathy.
By receiving empathy - we feel grateful and at peace from having so many needs met - being heard, acknowledged, connected with others, support and clarity.
By offering empathy - we feel happy that we have helped someone. Our need to contribute is met and we find a sense of purpose in life. It puts our own pain into perspective and allows us to feel less alone in the world.
This is the joy of giving.
So simple, but so powerful.
This formula has the power to change you, your community and the world.
Imagine if we could receive empathy everywhere we went... what a better place the world would be!
It is time to get core empathy skills out from the traditional roles of healer, counsellor, teacher, nurse, social worker, carer etc and spread these skills more widely in the community.