How It Works
1. Take five minutes to look at your schedule this week and select a meeting or conversation you have coming up where you'd like to practice empathy building. Then, watch this Brene Brown video for a brush-up on what it means to interact with empathy.
2. During that meeting, ask yourself the following regarding the person you are trying to connect with:
- What perspective is this person coming from?
- What emotions is this person feeling? How can I connect with something within myself that knows this feeling?
- How can I suspend judgement regarding this person's perspective and what s/he is feeling?
- How can I communicate in a manner that respects and honors his/her perspective and emotions as their truth?
3. As you listen and respond, be on the lookout for your tendency to use phrases like "At least" or "To look on the bright side." As Brown points out, those are typically sympathetic not empathetic responses where we minimize the other person's feelings as opposed to connect with them.
4. After your meeting or convo, take 5 minutes to reflect. What did it feel like to take this approach? How did the other person respond to you? How might this approach be beneficial in other situations?