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Empathy; the only way.

“When someone is sharing something difficult– you connect with something deep inside yourself that knows the feeling.”

I was evaluated in a survey by my friends, co-workers, leaders, and family while in college. It dissected everything about me. #brutal

This was my rude awakening. I opened up the report of what everyone said. I flipped right to the suggestions column. Everything was anonymous, so the comments I received were painfully honest. The worst feedback I received?

“Clarissa lacks caring.” “She doesn’t know what’s appropriate to say, or to who.” “She can be very insensitive.”

I decided to leave out the worst parts, but you get the picture. It hurt.

Hearing others describe my lack of caring, made me feel horrible inside, but wow! Did it sure motivate me to change. I began looking into resources to help me become better.

My mentor started me off with this video about Empathy. It taught me a beautiful lesson about the difference between empathy and sympathy.

Brene Brown explains that Empathy is feeling with people. When someone is sharing something difficult– you connect with something deep inside yourself that knows the feeling of what they are sharing.

That first year at the university reformed my identity. Though I am nowhere near perfect at applying the things I’ve learned, I genuinely feel better about who I’ve become, and hope I can keep learning.

As I’ve written this post, I am once again humbled. I want to be better at connecting with you and others. I invite you to try this with me tonight. I am going to write down a person who I have a difficult time connecting with and commit to being empathetic the next time we speak. Connection is the highest form of human experience.

Let me know how it goes.

Best regards,

Clarissa Mace


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Comments 1

  1. I really love this. Also I wanted you to know that your warmth was never lost on me 🙂

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