The Power of Empathy - Changemakers Forward
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  • 1. + The Power of Empathy Emma Collins “A Rabbit Noticed my Condition”  I was sad one day and went for a walk; I sat in a field. A rabbit noticed my condition and came near.   It often does not take more than that to help at times –  to just be close to creatures who are so full of knowing, so full of love that they don’t chat, they just gaze with their marvelous understanding. 16th-century mystic Saint John of the Cross
  • 2. + Who I am! "If you want to learn a thing, read about it; if you want to know a thing, write about it; if you want to master a thing, teach it.” Yogi Bhajan n  Emma Collins n  Certified Transformational Coach and Trainer n  Lives in Switzerland. n  Loves mountains, swimming in the lake and collecting art. n  Specializes in Nonviolent Communication, developing compassionate minds and living our gifts and true purpose! n
  • 3. + How are you feeling? n  Joyful n  Grumpy n  Curious n  Tired n  Full n  Happy n  Uncertain n  Excited n  Nervous n  Frustrated n  Happy n  Playful n  Delighted n  Blank
  • 4. + What is Empathy? “Empathy is respectful understanding of what others are experiencing. Often instead of offering empathy we have a strong urge to give advice or reassurance and to explain our own position or feeling. Empathy, however, calls upon us to empty our mind and listen to the others with our whole being” Marshall Rosenberg
  • 5. + Empathy n  Empathy is a respectful understanding of what others are experiencing. It does not require us to agree with them, or offer sympathy. n  Empathy requires us to focus fully on the other person's experience. n  Listening deeply and with our whole being. Empathy is not: n  Not sympathy - "Oh, you poor thing. What a shame. I feel awful for you.” n  Not fixing, advising or educating - "If I were you, I would…Why don't you try...?” n  Not analyzing - "If you hadn't been so rude...What's wrong with you! She's taking advantage of you.” n  Not correcting or arguing – "That's not how it happened. I didn't start this, you did!” Excuse me? I never said that!"
  • 6. + What gets in the way? n  Thinking about what to say. n  Trying to figure out the solution to their ‘problem.’ n  Deciding I know the solution / what they should do. n  Getting caught up in strategies. n  Wanting to fix it or making it better. n  Not being self-connected and aware of my own feelings and needs. n  Not having enough empathy or space for myself.
  • 7. + What helps? ‘Don’t just do something. Be there!’ Buddha n  Listening with a quiet mind and an open heart. n  Focusing on my own or another's deeper feelings and needs. n  Stepping into the space of listening as an act of hospitality. n  Curiosity, acceptance and openness to whatever is happening in me, or with the other person.
  • 8. + What helps? n  I practice empathy using an approach called Nonviolent Communication. n  This means I use an assumption that everything that everyone says and does is an attempt to meet their needs. n  And that these needs are shared and universal. n  We all have the same needs, and we are all trying to meet them in order to thrive! n  I use NVC to hear my own precious needs and those of others.
  • 9. + Universal Needs
  • 10. + Nonviolent Communication n  Developed by Marshall Rosenberg n  A four step process, in two parts, that supports connection, cooperation and dialogue. n  NVC shows us how to reframe how we hear others and express ourselves. n  Instead of reactive, habitual responses, that alienate us from each other and ourselves, our words become consciously focused on what we are observing, feeling, needing and requesting. n  It’s foundation is empathy!
  • 11. +The four steps of NVC: ①  Observation –What do I see, hear, smell, touch, taste or remember seeing, hearing etc.? Something that can be recorded with a video or audio recorder and is free from evaluation and interpretation. ②  Feelings – What emotions do I feel right now? Distinct from thoughts, emotions can be felt in the body. ③  Needs – What do I need, long for, value or desire in this moment? Needs are qualities that contribute to making life wonderful.They are seperate from strategies. ④  Requests – What strategy could I ask of myself or another person to meet my needs?
  • 12. + The two parts – the dance of compassionate communication Honestly Expressing n  Courageously and vulnerably expressing what is alive in me. n  Trusting that this contributes to connection and to making life more wonderful for us both. Empathically receiving n  As well as learning to express our observations, feelings, needs and requests, we also want to learn to listen for these components in the messages of others. Self-empathy n  The extent to which I am able to hear and empathise with myself, is the extent to which I can hear and empathise with others.
  • 13. +All very well in theory! NVC is not about sticking to a strict formula u It is about practices that support a shift in our perception: n  What is alive in me? n  What is going on for this person? n  What is the need here? u The essence of NVC is that we perceive situations with compassionate curiosity, rather than in terms of judgment, blame, evaluation and demand. u Distinguishing between what we see and what we think about it, supports us in staying present. u We open our hearts and minds to our shared humanity and stay present with what is alive in us at any given time.
  • 14. + Practicing the shift…. n  Some behaviors you don’t like in others. n  What kinds of things do you think about this person? n  How do you feel when they behave like this? n  What needs of yours are not met? n  What needs do we think they are trying to meet? n  How do we feel about this person now?
  • 15. + How can we cultivate empathy? n  Empathy comes from the heart, not the head. So it is important to mindfully cultivate this sense of unconditional respect from the heart and proceed from there. n  Take a few minutes to sense the other person’s perspective, not just from your head, but from your heart. Ask yourself, how might this other person feel? n  Imagine seeing the world from their point of view, even if you disagree. n  Imagine the kindest, most loving and gentle person is whispering in your ear…what would they say to offer you acceptance for your inner experience right now?
  • 16. + Just like me….. n  Just like me, this person feels happiness joy and excitement. n  Just like me, this person feels sadness, loneliness and fear. n  Just like me, this person is doing everything they can to meet his/her needs. n  Just like me, this person wants to contribute and grow.
  • 17. + Want a free copy of my Loving Kindness Meditation? n  Just go to my website and sign up to my newsletter, and I will send you a link to download it right away! n  Alternatively you can copy and paste this link into your browser to go directly to the sign up page: My newsletter comes out about once per month with: n  Ideas for developing more presence and joy in your life. n  Tips for how to have difficult conversations. n  Ways to uncover and live your gifts. n  Details of workshops, courses and special offers. n  Free downloads and give aways!
  • 18. + Compassion and the ripple effect n  Compassion is the wish or urge to do something to alleviate another's suffering. n  Empathy is the first step in accessing compassion. n  People who develop and practice their empathy skills have greater resilience and are less likely to experience burn out when faced with overwhelming suffering. n  Just one person acting with more compassion and empathy impacts 3 degrees of separation away from them – the ripple effect is huge! n  And studies have shown that those with compassionate ways of thinking and behaving experience less inflammation at a cellular level!
  • 19. + Conflicts….. n  Are natural and point to something precious. n  Can be dissolved with compassionate curiosity so we can return to harmony. n  Attending to my own inner conflicts is as important as the external ones! n  NVC is the most powerful tool I have found to reconnect with myself and others!
  • 20. + Check out time…. What are you taking away? n What are the tools you are taking away? n One thing that had the most impact for you – your aha moment/golden nugget! n One thing you want to do differently or explore.
  • 21. + Thank you. Please stay in touch!