Men and Empathy—Are They a Lost Cause?

June 01, 2020

Empathy and Men vs. Women: A Common Scenario

Recently, a couple came in for a marriage coaching because they were stuck in a rut. Whenever she was upset about something, she would seek emotional support from him. Instead of empathy or even reflective listening, he would cut her off and suggest a bevy of ways to solve her problem. She would get more upset as a result because she didn’t feel understood. “Why can’t you just be there for me?” she’d ask.

In our session together, he explained that he felt like he would be validating her “unproductive” behavior (i.e., being emotional without [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

Why Everyone Needs Empathy and Self-Compassion—Especially Now!

April 04, 2020

Without exception and across the globe, people’s lives are disheveled. A major disruption has changed our way of life. Schools and businesses are closed; it’s uncertain when they will reopen. Many families are confined to their homes; it’s uncertain for how long. Entire countries are in lockdown. Those who are working at the front lines are risking their health to support others. Will this time make us more unified or divided? It all depends on empathy.

Empathy is the ability to understand what others are feeling and experiencing, no matter who or where they live. The coronavirus is [...]

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, How to Build Empathy

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 that so aptly depicts a common occurrence and illustrates a lack of empathy and self-awareness. Perhaps you can relate; it's so easy to find ourselves unprepared in real-life situations.

“During a hectic and stressful time, I bumped into a friend at the grocery store. She looked almost as stressed out as I felt, so I asked her what was wrong. Immediately, she began venting about the current state of affairs and 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 [...]

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 and understanding to your life and relationships!When a student tells you they’re overwhelmed or your partner is working from home and stresses—do you respond with empathy? Or do you react?

So, how would you respond if your partner expressed fear, sadness, and anger telling you she got put on furlough or lost her job? And right after you dipped into savings to build an addition on your house! The ideal would be to respond thoughtfully and empathetically, but many of [...]

Posted in Most Popular, How to Build Empathy