Better Living Through Empathy

  • Shared by Ismail Mechbal
  • -
  • - Empathy

We often take a “glass half empty” approach when considering empathy. In popular media and research studies alike, the consequences of a lack of empathy tend to be emphasized. We are warned of the perils of the office narcissist or psychopath who can’t see beyond their own point of view or needs; we are tantalized by crime shows depicting sadistic murderers who enjoy others’ pain; and we are frustrated by the directives of politicians that smack of indifference toward their most vulnerable constituents. At other times, though, we equate empathy with being "soft." In my own work, I focus on what helps us to better understand others. However, this is often in the context of times when we get it wrong, presuming we know how somebody else feels when we probably don’t.

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