Empathy is about connecting to underlying feelings.

It is not about pity or taking on someone’s problems. It’s about respecting perspective rather than pretending to be able to see through their eyes; being nonjudgmental; communicating understanding of their feelings; and mindfulness about one’s experience in empathy. Creating this connection can help obviate the downsides of not getting this right because it’s also the tool best suited for course-correcting.rB1 Barriers to empathy. Connection is a primary reward.

  1. Brené Brown, Dare to Lead: Brave Work, Tough Conversations, Whole Hearts (New York: Random House, 2018). (See notes.)