Here are 10 tips for empathy buddy practice. It includes a handout identifying 15 non-empathy responses to step aside from when you practice.
Trainer Tip: When they say "no", acknowledge what people are saying "yes" to. From there, you persist towards a resolution that values both party's needs, without demand. Persisting is when we try to meet needs by continuing to connect with another. Demanding is when we insist someone do something, or else face negative repercussions. Showing care and willingness to work with people can help them to want to collaborate and resolve conflict.
What parent hasn't experienced a surge of protectiveness when your child hurts their sibling? Our cultural training calls us to immediately take two roles: the judge, determining who was wrong and what the consequences will be, and the police, enforcing the consequences. These thankless jobs often result in frustration, resentment, pain, for all. Read on for an example of how empathy transformed a child's impulse to hit another child.
Trainer Tip: Even if we don't agree, acknowledging others' realities can help demonstrate that we're including their feelings and needs in the conversation. Creating space for your reality and theirs can also bring a sense of connection, understanding, inclusion, abundance and fullness in life. Try it today. Read on for an example.
Sometimes the empathy you offer may stimulate disconnect or a sense of boundary crossing for the other person. To identify what might have contributed to the disconnect you can look for the signs, the level of attunement and the context, and examine what's happening in you. Read on for more.
Repairing betrayal may include rebuilding self trust, getting support, empathy on both sides over time, and new agreements. Even though your (in)actions don't "cause" someone's behavior, acknowledging any part you played in creating conditions for the behaviors to arise, can support repair. Trust builds slowly as new skills, ways of relating and experiences that reflect honesty, self responsibility, and respect are consistent over time.
If you ask for or give empathy and are met with accusations of codependency, there are a number of things you can do to check that you are coming from a place of healthy differentiation. You can see if you're doing so from a place of healthy differentiation -- and notice signs of healthy differentiation when you offer empathy. You can also bring a profound respect for differences, and clear boundaries. Read on for more.