How's your empathy muscle? Are you exercising it every day or is it wasting away, ignored and dusty?
I read an article this morning which surprised and inspired me. In it, a man on an airplane showed what empathy looks like.
A young mum was taking a flight with two small children. When both children started crying and throwing a tantrum, the mum was petrified they'd get kicked off the plane. Fortunately for the little family, there was an empathetic soul sitting next to them. He took pity on her and helped soothed the children. Why? Empathy.
"As parents, we've all experienced fussy kids who're having a bad day. I just wanted to help in any way I could."
Wow. I mean, how cool is that? Instead of lashing out at the young mum who obviously was stressed out and making a bigger scene, he defused the situation by flexing his empathy muscle.
I admit, there are times when I shut off my empathy muscle. I'm tired, stressed, etc. and instead of taking a deep breath and helping someone in need, I shoot them the death stare. Instead of trying to help them, I complain. I'm not proud of myself when this happens but I do recognize my need to pump up my empathy muscle.
When we're empathetic, we're taking steps to make the world a better place. We understand and feel what another person is going through before doing what we can to help, even if it is only a smile or a kind word.
How do you show empathy? Has someone showed you empathy like the man in the article above? Share in the comments below.