The 3 Types of Empathy Explained: Part III, Compassionate Empathy

January 09, 2020

The adage, “think with your head, not with your heart,” would make you think that emotional empathy (Part I of this series) and cognitive empathy (Part II of this series) cannot coexist. Luckily, that’s not true! When the heart and mind meet in the middle, the third type of empathy comes alive—Compassionate Empathy.

Compassionate empathy is the antithesis of knee-jerk reactions and it is often the ideal response to challenging situations as this skill blends intellect, emotion, and action by considering the whole person. By developing compassionate empathy, you’ll go beyond a simple [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

The 3 Types of Empathy Explained: Part II, Cognitive Empathy

January 07, 2020

Welcome to the second part of the in-depth series on the types of empathy. In Part 1, you learned about Emotional Empathy. Now, it’s time to explore Cognitive Empathy. In the next blog, we’ll cover Compassionate Empathy.

To begin, think about all the people in your life. Is there someone you turn to when you need a solution to a problem? Someone who can cut through your emotional mess and help you formulate a plan of action?

These go-to problem-solvers often rely on cognitive empathy to make sense of other people’s struggles. Cognitive empathy is a characteristic of emotional intelligence [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

The 3 Types of Empathy Explained: Part I, Emotional Empathy

January 04, 2020

“Empathy is seeing with the eyes of another, listening with the ears of another and feeling with the heart of another.” ~Alfred Alder

You may have heard Alder’s description of empathy before, but did you know there are three types of empathy? That’s right! There’s Emotional Empathy, Compassionate Empathy, and Cognitive Empathy, and each one has its uses. This series of posts will explore each type of empathy in depth so you can better recognize and utilize them.

Let’s begin with Emotional Empathy. When someone uses the quote above or calls themselves an “empath,” they’re typically [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

The Power of Empathy: More than a Band-Aid for the Heart

August 13, 2019

One of the most needed and talked about topics and skills right now is empathy. Why? Because we are all longing for connection. People are hungry to be understood. And empathy has become a lost art. The power of empathy is at the core of emotional intelligence (EQ) and relationship mastery. It faithfully delivers the ability to connect with people we love and care about—and even handle those difficult people in our lives gracefully.

Do you ever feel ill-equipped to respond to a friend, spouse, or co-worker when they're sharing strong feelings or a painful experience? Do you postpone those [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

The Meaning of Empathy and Sympathy—and How to Tell the Difference!

July 18, 2019

You’d be forgiven for mistaking sympathy and empathy for synonyms. Much of pop culture and even many dictionaries confuse the two. On a basic level, they are similar. But in a very meaningful, practical way—empathy and sympathy are two separate practices and distinct emotional responses. We'll identify the difference between empathy and sympathy by exploring their roots and meanings.

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

How to Talk to Someone with Empathy—and What to Avoid!

June 25, 2019

Recently, someone shared the following experience with me:

“During a hectic and stressful time, I bumped into a friend at a coffee shop. She looked almost as stressed out as I felt, so I asked her what was wrong. Immediately, she began venting about an argument she just had with her husband. I tried to listen, but my mind was stuck on my own problems. As soon as I swung my attention back to her, I noticed that her expression had gone from stressed to withdrawn and angry. She stopped making eye contact and quickly said good-bye. I had really stepped in it. I had not shown my good friend [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

Using Boundaries and Empathy to Deal with People’s Anger Effectively

July 24, 2018

No one wants to be the target of another person’s anger. But almost everyone has been there. It’s an intense experience, whether the anger seems justified or not. Do you know how to diffuse an angry person?  Do you know what words calm an angry person? Knowing how to deal with angry people in life and at work is a crucial aspect of emotional intelligence. These kind of people skills build greater confidence in every relationship and situation! 

What if you knew how to respond to another’s anger in an effective way? I suspect that your life would be a little calmer and relaxed. And better [...]

Posted in How to Build Empathy

The Three Kinds of Empathy: Emotional, Cognitive, Compassionate

April 19, 2018

Do you know what the three kinds of empathy are and how to express them? Empathy is must-learn skill that brings more ease to your life and relationships!When a student tells you they’re overwhelmed or your partner comes home with bad news from work—do you respond with empathy? Or do you react?

So, how would you respond if your partner came home overwhelmed with fear, sadness and anger and told you she’d just lost her job? The ideal would be to respond thoughtfully and empathetically.

The thing is, not all empathy looks and feels the same. Just like not all sadness is the same; or [...]

Posted in Most Popular, How to Build Empathy

Empathy vs Sympathy: What’s the Difference?

March 31, 2018

It’s an everyday occurrence in our lives: Someone talks to us about a challenge they’re facing. Perhaps a relative is sick, or their child got in trouble at school. Maybe their car needs an expensive repair, or they just can’t find enough hours in the day to get everything done. Or they could be lamenting about an awful argument they had with a neighbor or their spouse. Whatever the challenge, you might be the chosen listener.

Posted in How to Build Empathy

What Is Empathy and Why Is It Important?

May 15, 2017

Have you ever had one of those days when you just needed someone to talk to, someone to really get how you were feeling? Have you ever felt totally misunderstood by your spouse or a friend? Well, if you have, you were more than likely needing a dose of empathy.

Feeling heard and understood is a human need. Everyone needs to feel understood. Empathy helps us get in touch with our feelings and gives us an emotional understanding of ourselves and others.

Posted in Most Popular, How to Build Empathy