Empathy and its Importance

Meaning of Empathy

In simple words, Empathy is about Awareness of the feelings and emotions of other people.

A key element of empathy is imagination, you really have to imagine yourself in other people’s shoes before making any kind of judgements about them.

So, basically, Empathy is the ability to emotionally understand what other people feel, see things from their point of view, and imagine yourself in their place. It’s about understanding other peoples at the emotional level and connecting with them.

Types of Empathy

There are 3 types of empathy –

Affective empathy,

Somatic empathy and

Cognitive empathy.

Affective empathy

Affective empathy is the ability to understand another person’s emotions and respond appropriately to them.

Somatic empathy

Somantic empathy is having a physical reaction in response to what someone else is experiencing. For example, you might start to cry if your best friend is crying.

Cognitive empathy

Cognitive empathy means being able to understand another person’s mental state and what they might be thinking in response to the situation.

Importance of Empathy

Empathy is the skill that can help us to build better relationships and connect with people at a higher level. When we are able to empathize with other people, we can have better and more meaningful conversations that lead to better ideas and solutions.

How to Improve this skill

 If you want to improve your empathy skills then there are some strategies that you can practice:

First – Be observant of others

Observation power is most essential skill, to master the skill of Empathy, if you are not a good observer, how you will be able to understand the deep down emotion of other person.

Second – Listening

When you are holding a conversation listen carefully to what people are saying without interrupting them; Use Active listening. Slow down and don’t rush to reply. Ask follow up questions. You don’t need to share someone’s opinion in order to understand and acknowledge.

Third- Try to understand another person

Instead of having your own beliefs try to understand other persons perspective.

Fourth – Body language

Pay attention to person body language in addition to what they are saying as that can sometimes indicate the real feelings.

Fifth- Keep an open mind

Learning more about other people’s experiences is important to understand the opinions of other people. Through the practice of having an open mind we can Challenge prejudice, find commonality and expand our moral universe to help us to not label people as the other

With an increasingly polarized and divided world, we need empathy more than ever before.

So, keeping in mind, above steps, we can improve our empathy skills, which is very much required to balance our relationship and emotions.

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