Why can't I feel compassion

Empathy - Can You Learn Compassion?

Empathy - that's behind it

You sob in the cinema, you have sweaty hands because a friend has an important doctor's appointment, and you get weak knees when someone talks about an injury and blood. All of that is compassion. To recognize what is going on in others, to feel what moves them, to suffer with them and to be happy with them - that not only makes the lives of others better and more beautiful, it also enriches your own.

We are all equipped with so-called mirror neurons, which ensure that z. For example, when you see a person in pain, the region in our brain that is active when you are in pain is activated. So we actually feel for it. For the same reason, we also have to yawn when the other person yawns.

No happiness without empathy

But mirror neurons alone are not enough. Whether the gift of empathizing with others can mature also depends on our environment. Managers are often downright trained to compassion. And neglected children can hardly develop it.

You can see where a lack of compassion can lead to violent young people. Since they cannot empathize with the pain of their victims, they are able to be freezing cold. You should actually feel sorry for them because they lack an important basis for real happiness: empathy. Because only those who feel with others realize that they are not alone with their own emotions. He feels less isolated in his pain, fear, or distress.

And he has another great advantage: His relationships are more fulfilling and stable because he can respond well to others. This is especially important in love: If I can understand what is going on in my partner, I get on better with him - even if I don't think everything he does is great.

This is how you can practice empathy

If you heed the following tips again and again, you will exercise compassion in the most beautiful way.

1. Pay attention to your own feelings

In fact, it is clear: you cannot become an "expert" on other people's feelings if you don't know (reasonably) well about your own. Only someone who knows what grief, shame or fear feels like can guess what someone is going through who has just been abandoned, humiliated or threatened. And: Those who are clear about their own feelings are less tempted to "blame" others for it. He knows: I am irritable - not my partner.

2. Change perspective

A really good psychotherapist doesn't immediately claim that he understands everything that moves the patient. Rather, he tries to put himself behind him again and again and to see the world from his point of view. Try this every now and then too. Think about it: What might it be like for person X - with their story, their fears and ideas - when they experience this or that? So it is even possible to understand unpleasant things like arrogance or righteousness (a little).

3. Listen carefully

It happens to everyone: while the other is still talking, we are tinkering with our answer, looking for a good tip or a clever argument. But you will never really understand what is going on in the other person and what he wants! Better: look at the person you are talking to.

You might even adopt the same posture. This helps to see what he is comfortable with. The most important thing, of course, is to let him finish and ask if something is not very clear. This not only gives him the feeling of being understood, but maybe even helps him to recognize new solutions.

4. Wish good luck

Compassion plays a central role in many religions, especially Buddhism. There is even a special training method called metta meditation. We wish everyone luck - instead of sinking into pity and founding a "victim club" with them.

First you start with yourself and say to yourself: may I live in peace. May i be happy This is how you develop love and compassion for yourself. You then extend this to friends and quietly wish them: May you live in peace. May you be happy Later on, advanced learners send their loving thoughts to complete strangers or even to people they don't like. In this way you can see that we are all basically very similar: We want to be happy.

Animals have compassion too

Animals also sympathize. An unusual case of animal compassion occurred in a zoo in Budapest: a brown bear saved a crow from drowning. He carefully pulled her ashore by a wing. The crow seemed certain: now I'm going to be eaten. When she realized she was still alive, her rescuer was busy with his carrots again.

The video shows this incredible event. Critics might say: the bear in the zoo just doesn't know how to behave like a bear anymore, animals have no compassion. This almost certainly does not apply to dogs: They let themselves be infected by the yawning of humans. According to scientists, this only "happens" to living beings that can empathize with others.

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