Empathy is the ability to identify with what the other feels or thinks, to share their feelings and emotions. It is a healthy way to interact with other people, and establish constructive and enriching relationships.
Hence, it is an extremely relevant social skill in our family, school and professional relationships. Therefore, here we tell you what are the five characteristics of empathy that are an example of its importance.
1. Know how to listen
Knowing how to listen is a fundamental characteristic of empathy. Empathic people like to establish enriching and constructive relationships. They are always willing to listen to each other and are very good conversationalists. Therefore, when someone is angry or sad it is important to give him the opportunity to express why.
2. Understand the other
Empathy also implies the ability to understand the feelings, emotions and ideas of the other person; not only what the other is able to express verbally, but also everything that manifests with their gestures, behaviors and decisions.
An empathic person is able to understand the other to the point of being able to feel what the other person feels and to understand their mental states sincerely.
In empathy we make the other feel understood. Thus, when we comfort someone in difficult times, we are having an empathetic attitude.
3. Identify with the other
Being empathetic is also being able to put ourselves in the place of the other, to understand in a deep and honest way what he thinks or believes, what he feels or worries, what makes him suffer or rejoice.
Thus, an empathetic person can put himself in the emotional situation of the other and deeply understand his feelings, fears or beliefs.
This is evident, for example, when someone tries to show us the solutions to a problem remembering that similar situations have also happened in the past.
4. Be supportive
An empathetic person has a high sensitivity towards what other people feel or suffer. That is why empathy has a lot to do with solidarity, with the desire to help others, especially when they are in a situation of need. An example of this is to help a friend who is going through a difficult time.
5. Be respectful
In short, being empathetic also implies respecting the other in their feelings, ideas, behaviors, decisions and, in short, in their way of being and facing life, even if we do not agree or agree with them.
Therefore, empathy is a fundamental value for living in society, because it allows us to understand other people and respect the way in which they express their ideas, feelings and concerns about the world.
We are empathetic when, for example, we support our family, friends or colleagues when they undertake adventures or projects that, sometimes, we cannot fully understand.