The Hidden Prerequisites of #Empathy
As I am preparing for my next workshop on empathy, I immerse myself in my reading books, articles, business cases, as well as discussions with my clients and social network. And these discussions triggered a big and loud astonishment.
What is empathy to you? What are the skills needed? What does it take to have empathy?
Throughout my discussions, I realized how much the term is misused, and how much it is inappropriately owned. To my disarray, empathy became a general characteristic, a popularized notion of just being “nice”, similar to the sticker primary teachers give for their children’ good work.
In the reality of the situation, people overlook the basic competences that build empathy.
To be empathic first requires some basic work on the you within yourself.
So prior to opening your social radar, check empathy’s prerequisites:
Self-awareness of your emotions and how they impact your behavior
Know your values and align your goals to them
Acknowledge your strengths
Acknowledge your weaknesses
Use experience for self improvement
Be self confident in your capacities and values
Manage your disruptive impulses and emotions
Hold your judgments and check your assumptions
Show integrity and honesty
Be dependable and responsible in accomplishing your obligations
Be flexible to change and challenges
Be opened to innovative ideas, approaches and new information
These skills contribute to firstly building your emotional self-awareness; by assessing your strengths and weaknesses, discover your values and aligning them to your goals. And secondly to manage yourself, and assessing how your emotions impact your performance, your ethics, your judgments, and being opened to new ideas and change.
Mastering these personal skills will provide you solid foundations to understand other people’s perspectives and feelings, develop others, be opened to gender and cultural diversity, and have good sense of political awareness.
We all to a certain extent have some of the competences of empathy, however, acknowledging and working on these prerequisites will allow you to reach a level of empathy natural leaders have.
Based in Geneva, Switzerland, International Coaching Solutions provides 1 on1 coaching and workshops.
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