Being present; being with......vital relationship builders.
"Being present, whether with children, with friends, or even with oneself, is always hard work. But isn’t this attentiveness — the feeling that someone is trying to think about us — something we want more than praise?"
As I read this article on Forbes tonight, Teaching Empathy: The Ancient Way Is Now Cutting-Edge it struck me that the four things they suggest we teach for empathy also represent network leadership.
- Teach listening as a core skill and expect it as a cultural practice.
- Start by being an active listener yourself and give people the time they need to reflect.
- Time not made for someone is time wasted.Make dialogue a primary team, group or classroom practice.
- Dialogue opens the doors to exploration—what Peter Senge in his guide “The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook” calls “skillful discussion,” where thoughtful decisions can be made that honor all participants (or, in business, stakeholders).
- Identify roles, not organizational charts. When people are able to articulate their role, what they need to be successful and what gets in the way of their success, an empathic understanding is present and the beginnings of a healthy team, class or group takes shape.
- Lead with consistency, authenticity and honesty.
- Be clear as to why you are doing what you are doing.
- Do not lead or manage through personality but rather through articulation. To articulate is to clarify.
How do you hold the pain of the world without being swallowed whole by it?
Mary Perfitt-Nelson's insight:
This is a wonderful article. The writer supports other people in his role working with children. He has three major revelations: 1. pain is universal; 2. there was nothing he could do about some people's problems; 3. the size of the problems were huge. Read on to see how he chose to embrace his role . There is MUCH we can do. It starts with empathy.
by Jennifer Rita Nichols, TeachThought Intern As educators, we have a huge responsibility towards each child entrusted to us. It is our duty to try…
Mary Perfitt-Nelson's insight:
Students need us to be empathic. They need us to see them as unique individuals with indiviual needs. We tend to think about the "group". They are asking us to look past that and into their eyes and hearts.
Showing empathy is great, but we should never fall into these traps mentioned here in the article:
Trap #1: Even Worse – the basic idea here is to compare the person's problem with someone else’s problem that is even much bigger.
Trap #2: Look on the Bright Side – in this approach we ask people to focus on the positive outcome of the situation. When we focus on the positive, rather than acknowledge a person’s feelings, we ignore and dismiss them as unimportant. The net result is that we invalidate the other person.
Trap #3: Problem Solving – rather than be with the person in an emotion, we immediately jump to problem solving mode: How can we fix this problem?
To avoid these traps we should:
1.) See People's World – this means that we cognitively understand what people are saying and can see it from their point of view.
2.) Appreciate them as Human Beings / No-Judgement
3.) Understand Feelings – we need to get in touch with our emotions in order to truly connect with another person’s feelings.
4.) Communicate Understanding - the final element is that the other person feels like they are understood – that they are seen and heard.
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