Some people annoy you all the time - why is it so hard for you to get involved with them? It's clear that everyone has their own quirks. With a little empathy, you'll be able to see behind their facade. Then you'll finally understand why your colleague is always so taciturn and why another acquaintance reacts so hypersensitively.
With the necessary empathy, you can better resolve conflicts and strengthen the sense of unity. This has many benefits, not only at work. Advantages. It is also easier to solve problems and strengthen harmony in the family and among friends. This has nothing to do with repression, but with being responsive to others. The great thing is: You you also learn about your own feelings get to know each other better. And you gradually realize how communication works.
Definition of empathy: empathy and emotional intelligence
Empathy or empathy - these words name the ability to empathize with other people. If you have this talent, you can understand your conversation partners better, even if a lot remains unspoken. You slip into the role of your counterpart and suddenly understand why he remains silent or is aggressive.
The emotional intelligence helps you to react appropriately - regardless of whether someone shuts you down or acts stupidly. In the best case, you develop a lot of sensitivity for others and can show consideration when necessary.
So empathy is a good thing, especially when combined with consideration - but it requires a lot of tact.
Why empathy matters: benefits for interpersonal relationships
People with empathy seem to be able to see into their fellow human beings without many words. In fact, they have a sense for the unspoken. They can recognize when someone is being emotions overplayed. With this ability, they can respond to their conversation partners and build a close emotional bond.
Empathy plays a major role in the interpersonal sphere. It creates a basis of trust - both privately and professionally.
The ability to think and act empathetically is also an important advantage in learning. With empathy, you can also learn and develop better.
Empathy in different areas of life: Family, friendships and work
"Don't rush me again" - "Just let me get on with it" - a certain amount of empathy is needed in many everyday situations. This goes from leisure planning to business meetings. Just how important empathy is in different areas is shown by the following three examples:
In a Relationship one partner is very demanding and controlling, while the other goes along with everything for the sake of peace and quiet. In the long run, this feels like emotional repression. Talking about it helps - and then it's important that both listen to the other's opinion. That helps to combat the imbalance.
In a friendship, one always relies on the other until the other feels taken advantage of. With the Habit the situation often gets worse. Asking for help even once can result in various reactions. At best, it's a surprised look and the question: Why didn't you say something much earlier?
There is a dispute in the office because of an unfair division of labor. Some colleagues are under a lot of stress, others feel underchallenged. If both sides deal with each other empathetically, the conflict can best be resolved: In this way, all parties involved perceive the problems of the others and can learn from them.
Signs of high empathy: characteristics of empathic people
Those who are particularly empathetic show a great deal of compassion - but that is not the only characteristic. Often other typical characteristics are added in empathetic people:
- You are a good listener.
- They are popular contacts.
- Intensive contact with close friends is more important to them than superficial acquaintances.
- They are considered peaceful mediators.
- Often they have their own feelings well under control.
- They cheer up their interlocutors at the right time - by praising or affirming them.
- To relieve themselves, they need a relatively large amount of time to themselves.
- They prefer quiet places instead of bustling places.
Developing Empathy: Exercises and techniques to improve empathy
Want to be more empathetic so you can talk to other people in a more relaxed way? Good news: You can increase your empathy. But you have to be willing to engage with the person you're talking to.
Appreciation show, actively listen, be considerate and remain authentic - this works with the following exercises.
Free yourself from your previous prejudices. If you find someone boring or exhausting for no reason, this will change your perception. Keep an open mind and deal with your interlocutors without prejudice.
Ask questionswhen you don't understand other people. Why does your partner block completely? How did the colleague come to his decision? Your questions should not sound reproachful or be overbearing. But you can be curious, because you want to understand what's going on.
Get to know yourself better. Why do you always react so snappishly to this one person? What bothers you about your boss - do you perhaps feel an underlying envy?
Observe the people around you and train the Change of perspective. I wonder what the guy is thinking, looking around so grimly?
Take an interest in other people and ask how they are doing - but really, not just in passing. This will help you get to know them better and become more open yourself. You will also discover that it is not that difficult to understand a completely foreign concept of life. As a result, you will become more tolerant.
To improve your empathy, you can use the following techniques:
- Listen actively while holding yourself back. Give your conversation partner the necessary time and concentrate on the answers. Asking questions is allowed, but only if your questions do not disturb.
- Maintain eye contact to show your attention. The exchange of glances is a clear sign of your attention. Depending on the situation, you can nod encouragingly.
- Repeat the important points, possibly formulated as a question. "Did I understand correctly that ...", "You are angry because ..." - this way you stay on topic and make sure you understand everything correctly.
Limits of empathy: self-protection and balance between closeness and distance
Empaths sometimes neglect themselves. That's the problem with empathy: It can become a burden if you only devote yourself to others. So think about yourself, too, and draw boundaries when you feel overwhelmed. So be empathetic to yourself as well.
In a Mutual understanding study an asymmetry was found: The more empathy the tested persons had, the weaker was their self-esteem.
That's exactly why self-protection is so important, otherwise you'll rub yourself up too much for other people.
The role of empathy in communication: active listening and emotional support
When you're actively listening to someone, it doesn't mean you're constantly interrupting them. It's about really listening. That's the only way you can support the person you're talking to.
You are not only present with your body, but also with your mind. But keep a low profile: This way you concentrate on the things your counterpart is saying. Your reaction plays a secondary role.
With honest You demonstrate your empathy through your interest. This also shows in nonverbal communication. Observe the Body language - Does your conversation partner sit relaxed in front of you or does he close himself behind crossed arms and a lowered head?
For emotional support, give your counterpart positive feedback. This can be an understanding nod or verbal praise. Follow up, Courage make, cheer up - these little things are important elements in empathetic communication.
Conclusion: Empathy as a key competence for a fulfilling social life
You need a certain sensitivity for social interaction. At Articles on the topic of empathy you learn about the benefits of empathy. As you strengthen your tolerance and positive curiosity, your self-awareness improves. This, in turn, enhances your emotional intelligence. The needs of those you know - in your personal and professional life - are important to you and your fulfilled life. But always stay with yourself and don't deny your own needs: that way your empathy will take you further in every way.