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Benefits of Empathy > Articles and Links

 

 

The Impact of Clinical Empathy on Patients and Clinicians: Understanding Empathy’s Side Effects
Helen Riess, 2015, Harvard Medical School
"The benefits of clinical empathy in medical practice abound. They include

  •  improved patient satisfaction and adherence to treatment recommendations, more accurate diagnoses, reduced distress (Neumann et al. 2011

  •  improved health outcomes (Kelley et al. 2014),

  • and fewer medical errors and

  • malpractice claims (Hickson et al. 2002)."

  • ....some studies have shown that clinician empathy positively impacts clinician well-being, meaningful work, sense of coherence, and job satisfaction (Halpern 2001; Krasner et al. 2009; Warmington 2012; Tei et al. 2015),"

 


A META-ANALYSIS OF EMPATHY TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR CLIENT POPULATIONS by Robert Paul Butters

May 2010

  • "Empathy is a critical component in prosocial behaviors and moderates aggressive behavior (Eisenberg & Miller, 1988)

  • and the absence of empathy is a hallmark of autism 2 and psychopathy (Blair, 2008).

  • Empathy helps individuals establish and maintain friendships (Del Barrio, Aluja, & Garcia, 2004; Hay, 1994),

  •  enhances satisfaction in intimate relationships (Long, Angera, & Hakoyama, 2008),

  • improves the quality of family relationships (Guerney, 1988),

  •  and is positively associated with family cohesion, parental support, and communicative responsiveness (Henry, Sager, & Plunkett, 1996).

  • Empathy has been positively correlated with helping behaviors and negatively correlated with aggression (Jolliffe & Farrington, 2006a; Mehrabian & Epstein, 1972).

  • Studies indicate that increases in empathy can reduce sexual assaults and the incidence of domestic violence (Berg, Lonsway, & Fitzgerald, 1999; Foubert, 2006; O’Donohue, 2003).

  • Further support for the salutary effects of empathy comes from studies of parent training programs, where increasing parental empathy is believed to reduce children’s aggressive and acting-out behaviors (Eyberg, Nelson, & Boggs, 2008; McMahon & Washburn, 2003).

  •  Further, some research has demonstrated that improving empathy through family and couples counseling leads to improved relationships and decreased family problems (Long, 1999). "

Q and A on Facebook Questions
What do you see as the benefits of empathy? Add yours below and explain?

  • Being empathic with each other and listening leads to conflict resolution. +27

  • Empathy as personal value gives a sense of purpose and a way of being in the world. +19

  • Is the social glue for all relationships, +13

  • Empathy motivates altruism +12

  • Feel Deeper Connection +6

  • Feel Deeper Presence +5

  • Empathy is a tool to reach beyond right and wrong +5

  • Empathy helps to build trust +4

  • Empathy is the foundation of morality +4

  • Feel Deeper Intimacy +3

  • Empathy is the key to collaboration +4

  • Feel authenticity +3

  • Enables us to care for one another +3

  • Empathy is a path toward consciousness +3

  • is a main factor in the acquisition of knowledge about others +3

  • Feel healing +3

  • Feel Acceptance +3

  • Is a key in the practice of fostering learning in others +2

  • Empathy maintains social cohesiveness +3

  • Empathy is a foundation for personal growth +2

  • Feel belonging +1

  • Feels Damn Good!!! +2

  • Feel More Happiness +2

  • Fosters compassion, collaboration, and creativity. +3

  • Is key to deep connections with others and animals +1

  • Feel Less Negative Feelings +3

  • Helps me to realize that every being is just myself in a different skin +3

  • Empathy is a healer and truth seeker +3
     

 

Benefits by Marshall Rosenberg

"Our ability to offer empathy can allow us to stay vulnerable, defuse potential violence, help us hear the word 'no' without taking it as a rejection, revive lifeless conversation, and even hear the feelings and  needs expressed through silence."
 

 "Time and again, people transcend the paralyzing effects of psychological pain when they have sufficient contact with someone who can hear them empathically." 

 

By maintaining our attention on what's going on within others, we offer them a chance to fully explore and express their interior selves. We would stem this flow if we were to shift attention too quickly either to their request or to our own desire to express ourselves."
 

”Empathy gives you the ability to enjoy another person's pain.”

The more we empathize with the other party, the safer we feel.”
 

”Empathy allows us to re-perceive our world in a new way and move forward ”
 

”To be able to hear our own feelings and needs and to empathize with them can free us from depression.”

 

Empathy Circles: a Blended Empathy Practice (Part 1) by Lidewij Niezink

"Talking about empathy is one thing, but as the preeminent psychologist Carl Rogers puts it in the quote above, practicing is how we develop empathy on an experiential level. And practicing empathy has many benefits. Studies have shown that it not only increases our willingness to help others but it also reduces racism, prejudice and bullying and aggression among children. Empathy fights inequality, boosts creativity and improves the relationship between spouses as well as healthcare professionals and their clients."

 

 3 Reasons to Cultivate More Empathy

"Empathy is a good thing, without a doubt. But why is empathy so good? We now have a whole slew of studies to aid our understanding of how empathy helps, well, just about everything.

Here are three examples.


1. It’s good for the environment...
After surveying roughly 3,500 people about what factors would lead them to reduce their carbon footprint to help slow global warming, the scientists found that tapping into our tendency toward compassion for others was a more effective motivator than appealing to self-interest...

2. It’s good for business....
Managers with more empathy may translate to healthier employees, research published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes shows. ..

3. It’s good for relationships

  • Increases altruistic behavior:

  • Reduces racism

  • Reduces bullying and aggression in children:

  • Benefits intimate relationships:..."

 

Your Most Important Skill: Empathy
by Chad Fowler

"Why should you explicitly work to enhance your ability to empathize with others?

  • You will be more likely to treat the people you care about the way they wish you would treat them.

  • You will better understand the needs of people around you.

  • You will more clearly understand the perception you create in others with your words and actions.

  • You will understand the unspoken parts of your communication with others.

  • You will better understand the needs of your customers at work.

  • You will have less trouble dealing with interpersonal conflict both at home and at work.

  • You will be able to more accurately predict the actions and reactions of people you interact with.

  • You will learn how to motivate the people around you.

  • You will more effectively convince others of your point of view.

  • You will experience the world in higher resolution as you perceive through not only your perspective but the perspectives of those around you.

  • ...."
     

Developing empathy is essential to emotional and physical health
by Karen Pace

Part 1  - Part 2

"According to Szalavitz and Perry, empathy and the care and connection it enables are essential to the overall health of people, communities and society as a whole. "
 

"authors Maia Szalavitz and Bruce Perry, M.D., stress that not only is the development of empathy important for individual health and wellbeing, but that it also“ underlies virtually everything that makes society work — like trust, altruism, collaboration, love, charity.”"
 

 

Benefits of Empathy-Induced Altruism
by C. Daniel  Batson

"Empathy-induced altruism offers a number of benefits. Most obvious are the benefits that accrue to individuals whose needs elicit empathic concern, but research suggests that empathy-induced altruistic motivation can also benefit groups in need. It may even benefit the person experiencing this motivation. The potential benefits discussed in this chapter are:

  • more sensitive, and less fickle help;

  • less aggression and derogation of the victims of injustice;

  • increased cooperation and care in conflict situations, including conflict in bargaining and negotiations, ethnic, religious, and political conflicts, and racial conflicts in educational settings;

  • improved attitudes toward, and action on behalf of, stigmatized groups;

  • more positive close relationships, including friendships and romantic relationships;

  • and better mental and physical health for the altruistic helper"


Empathy: It has many benefits
ChangingMinds.org

" The value of empathy comes not from understanding the other person's feelings, but what you do as a result of this.
 

Empathy connects people together
When you empathize with me, my sense of identity is connected to yours. As a result, I feel greater in some way and less alone. I may well, as a result, also start to empathize more with you.
 

In a therapeutic situation, having someone else really understand how you feel can be a blessed relief, as people with emotional problems often feel very much alone in their differentness from other people. The non-judgmental quality can also be very welcome.
 

Empathy heals
Therapeutically, it can be a very healing experience for someone to empathize with you. When someone effectively says 'I care for you', it also says 'I can do that, I can care for myself.'

 

Empathy builds trust
Empathy displayed can be surprising and confusing. When not expected, it can initially cause suspicion, but when sustained it is difficult not to appreciate the concern. Empathy thus quickly leads to trust.
 

Empathy closes the loop
Consider what would happens if you had no idea what the other person felt about your communications to them. You might say something, they hated it, and you continued as if they understood and agreed. Not much persuasion happening there!
 

The more you can empathize, the more you can get immediate feedback on what they are experiencing of your communications with them. And as a consequence, you can change what you are saying and doing to get them to feel what you want them to feel."

 

Benefits of Empathy in Recovery
AlcoholRehab.com

"Empathy and empathetic listening can be highly useful tools for people recovering from an addiction. These are some of the benefits of using this approach with other humans:

It can greatly reduce the amount of conflict in the individual’s life. The most common reason why other people become angry is that they do not feel like they are being understood.


One of the most important benefits of empathy is that it improves relationships. Those who have been addicted to alcohol or drugs will have done a great deal of damage to their relationships and empathy can allow them to repair this damage.


It greatly improves communications because there is less likely to be misunderstandings.
Failure to understand other people can lead to much suffering and negativity. Those that are empathetic will have a far more positive view of humanity.


It can reduce feelings of bigotry, racism, sexism, and all other types of intolerance. Empathy allows people to see that everyone is in the same boat – there is far less of a feeling of us and them.

Helping other people is a wonderful way for the individual to strengthen their only recovery. In order to really help someone else it is necessary to understand what it is they need.


It makes people more open-minded about life in general. This is vital if people wish to develop emotional sobriety and build a successful life away from addiction.


It helps people overcome self-absorption. This type of obsession with self can prevent people getting better in recovery."


Why Practice Empathy?
Greater Good Science Center


The Amazing Power of Empathy in Improving Your Life and Theirs
Sixwise

  • teaching empathy in a school make students fosters creativity and critical thinking

    •  "The attributes which characterize empathy correlate with those of effective critical thinking and imagination." Delores Gallo

  • "role-taking, is even known to promote open-mindedness, discourage hasty examination of problems, encourage personal flexibility, and foster insight into different perspectives and problem-solving skills."

  • good for being a great leader (Daniel Goleman)

  • Have satisfying relationships

  • Leads to forgiveness

  • have greater satisfaction in relationship


 

Empathy, Listening Skills, and Touching Another Heart -
by Lawrence J. Bookbinder

"Some of the possible benefits are:

  • absorbing some of the joy of a person who is excitedly relating a joyous experience

  • being prized by a conversation partner for giving him an opportunity to talk about something that matters to him

  • feeling good about giving a loved one an opportunity to talk about something that matters to him

  • avoiding a quarrel with a conversation partner because of carefully summarizing his opinion before presenting your disagreement with it

  • being listened to more carefully because you listen carefully to the other person before you talk

  • learning about lifestyles radically different from yours

  • broadening your horizons from listening with empathy to people whose values are radically different from yours

  • feeling hugged by the talker. This benefit will be explained by examining the illustration of Anita empathically acknowledging Tanya's communications about Tanya's relationship with Ben."
     

Empathy, Listening Skills, and Touching Another Heart -
by Lawrence J. Bookbinder

  • Benefits for talker
    Empathic acknowledging can satisfy people's needs to reveal aspects of
    their inner world to others and to have their revelations acknowledged.
     

    • "obtaining relief from health problems, such as asthma, insomnia and headaches"

    • "making sense of a puzzling experience from "bouncing" ideas off someone who listens without giving analyses or advice"

    • "becoming aware of an unconscious feeling from opening up in response to being listened to with empathy and without interruption or criticism"

    • "experiencing relief from distress"

    • "obtaining relief from health problems, such as asthma, insomnia and headaches 2"

    • "ending a conflict about a decision."

    • "feeling less alone with a problem.  I believe that a major reason support groups are popular is that members feel less alone with their problem because of the opportunities to talk about it with people who listen with empathy."
       

  • Benefits for the Acknowledger 
    "Empathically acknowledging another person can touch the person's heart."
     

    • "absorbing some of the joy of a person who is excitedly relating a joyous experience"

    • "being prized by a conversation partner for giving him an opportunity to talk about  something that matters to him (1)"

    • "feeling good about giving a loved one an opportunity to talk about something that matters to him "

    • "avoiding a quarrel with a conversation partner because of carefully summarizing his opinion before presenting your disagreement with it (1)"

    • "being listened to more carefully because you listen carefully to the other person before you talk (1)"

    • "learning about lifestyles radically different from yours (1)"

    • "broadening your horizons from listening with empathy to people whose values are radically different from yours (1)"

    • "feeling hugged by the talker. (1)"

 

The Benefits of empathy: When empathy may sustain cooperation in social dilemmas

European Journal of Social Psychology,
ANN C. RUMBLE, PAUL A. M. VAN LANGE AND CRAIG D. PARKS

We conclude that empathy has broad benefits for social interaction, in that it can be an effective tool for coping with misinterpreted behaviors, thereby maintaining or enhancing cooperation

  • Several experiments have shown that empathy enhances helping and cooperation, often in contexts which cannot be understood in terms of considerations of long-term self-interest or anticipated reciprocity (Batson & Ahmad, 2001; Batson, Batson, Todd, Brummett, Shaw, & Aldeguer, 1995)

 


Who Benefits From Empathy?
by Miki Kashtan

"whenever someone is heard, they find more willingness to hear another"

 

 

Empathy and Authenticity in the Workplace (part 1 of 3) 
by Miki Kashtan

(Effectiveness) "I see at least three ways in which connection could enhance effectiveness.

  •  First, people who are heard and understood, have more goodwill to contribute.

  • Second, people who are often operating within the fear and discomfort arising from conflict and mistrust literally have less of themselves available to produce.

  • Lastly, when decisions and agreements are based on true connection and mutual understanding, such that “yes” is really a “yes,” people are much less likely to back out of what they said they would do."

 

 

Roots of Empathy: Consistently Positive Results

"Results showed that compared to comparison groups, Roots of Empathy children demonstrated:

  • Increase in social and emotional knowledge

  • Decrease in aggression

  • Increase in prosocial behaviour (e.g. sharing, helping and including)

  • Increase in perceptions among ROE students of the classroom as a caring environment

  • Increased understanding of infants and parenting"


Six Hats – Empathy or Thinking?
by Brendan Coram

  • "Collaboration: Without empathy, collaboration is just a collection of people arguing their point of view

  • Dialog: without empathy, conversations are just organized turn taking (Jeez, are they ever going to finish…I have something to say)

  • Conflict: without empathy, conflicts cannot be truly resolved…and are instead a series of cease fires

  • Creative Thinking: without empathy, our creative thinking is limited by our own experience and perspective "

 

The Benefits of Empathic Listening 
By Richard Salem - BeyondIntractability.org

  • "builds trust and respect,

  • enables the disputants to release their emotions,

  • reduces tensions,

  • encourages the surfacing of information, and

  • creates a safe environment that is conducive to collaborative problem solving."


Benefits of Empathetic Listening - Beyond Intractability

  • Builds trust and respect

  • Allows for emotional release

  • Reduces tensions

  • Uncovers “hidden” information

  • Creates a safe environment

  • Helps clarify parties’ thoughts

  • Aids understanding of context

 

The Benefits of Empathy

by Jetstream - Hubpages.com

Being able to put yourself in another’s shoes and to realize that they are just like you has far-reaching benefits for both your emotional and physical wellbeing. These are just a few of the many benefits of empathy.

 

1. Makes you happier... You’re happier in the sense that you’re able to meet people on a level of understanding, meaning that your social interactions are more amiable and less apprehensive....

2. Makes you healthier.. So essentially, people who experience warm, upbeat emotions live longer and healthier lives. Just by practicing a mindset of compassion, you expose yourself to the same kind of benefits one gets out of exercise and eating healthy...

3. Makes you smarter..

 

The Benefits of Empathic Listening

By Tracy Dawson

Empathy is really a healing core value.  Empathy is really a healing core competency because it brings people together, it engenders hope and relief and it makes our Customer Service light shine brightest.

  • builds trust and respect

  • reduces tensions

  • creates a safe environment that is conducive to collaborative problem solving

  • tells customer, "You are important" and "I am not judging you"

  • gains the customer’s cooperation

  • reduces stress and tension

  •  builds teamwork

  • elicits openness

  • encourages sharing of ideas and thoughts

  • ability obtain more valid information about the customer and
    their concerns

 

Developing the Social Empathy Index: An Exploratory Factor Analysis
By Elizabeth A. Segal, M. Alex Wagaman, Karen E. Gerdes

The Value of Interpersonal Empathy

  • "It is critical to our survival because it requires the accurate perception, interpretation, and response to the emotional signals of others (Preston & de Waal, 2002).

  • Therefore, empathy is a key building block for prosocial behavior, or the actions people take that benefit others and society (Eisenberg & Mussen, 1989).

  •  There is substantial research  evidence that empathy is important in the development of healthy relationships (Toussaint & Webb, 2005);

  • it supplies the affective and motivational foundation for moral development (Eisenberg & Eggums, 2009; Smetana & Killen, 2008);

  • and promotes helping and prosocial behaviors particularly during adolescence (Batson, Chang, Orr, & Rowland, 2002; Batson, Håkansson Eklund, Chermok, Hoyt, & Ortiz, 2007; McMahon, Wernsman, & Parnes, 2006).

  • For youth, higher levels of empathy are associated with increased conflict resolution (de Weid, Branje, & Meeus, 2007) and willingness to come to the defense of a bullied peer (Gini, Albiero, Benelli, & Altoe, 2007).

  • Parental empathy has been cited as crucial for raising healthy children (Curtner- Smith et al., 2006) and

  •  partner empathy is cited as a key attribute in satisfying relationships (Busby & Gardner, 2008). "

  • "When accurate empathic insight into other people’s lives is gained, it is often followed by a sense of social responsibility (Frank, 2001)."

The absence of empathy can lead to destructive behaviors and adversely affect relationships.

  • "A lack of interpersonal empathy is associated with narcissism, bullying,  violent crime, abusive parenting, spousal battering, and sexual offending

    • Covell, Huss, & Langhinrichsen-Rohling, 2007;

    •  Elsegood & Duff, 2010;

    • Gini, Albieri, Benelli, & Altoe, 2008;

    • Joliffe & Farrington, 2004;

    • Ritter et al., 2011."

 

Importance of empathy for social work practice: integrating new science.
Elizabeth A. Segal, M. Alex Wagaman, Karen Gerdes

  • "Research demonstrates that empathy is an important tool for positive therapeutic intervention (Watson, 2002).

  • Clients experiencing empathy through treatment by others inhibits antisocial behavior in children and adolescents (Eisenberg, Spinard, & Sadovsky, 2005; Hoffman, 2000).

  • Empathy inhibits aggression toward others (Weisner & Silbereisen, 2003)

  • and promotes healthy personal development (Hoffman, 2001).

  • The lack of empathy is correlated with bullying, aggressive behavior, violent crime, and sexual offending

    • (Gini, Albieri, Benelli, & Altoe, 2008;

    • Joliffe & Farrington, 2004;

    • Loper, Hoffschmidt, & Ash, 2001;

    • Sams & Truscott, 2004). 

  • A practitioner's own level of empathy is correlated with positive client outcomes (Forrester, Kershaw, Moss, & Hughes, 2008).

  • Jensen, Weersing, Hoagwood, and Goldman (2005) completed a review of 52 child psychotherapy treatment studies and concluded that therapist empathy, attention, and positive regard are essential to effective outcomes.

  • Forrester et al. (2008) found that empathy is central to effective communication in child protection situations. Empathy is critical to both practitioner and client outcomes. "

 

Empathy in Patient Care,
by Mohammadreza Hojat

"So much evidence has been accumulated that it is now beyond doubt that being connected and feeling felt are beneficial to physical, mental, and social well-being, the three pillars of health defined by the constitution of the World Health Organizations (pg 19).
 

"Empathy like human love, connects people more closely, reduces interpersonal space, and fulfills the human need for affiliation, support, and understanding...

 

Empathy can increase altruistic, prosocial, and helping behaviors; reduce aggressive behaviour; improve conflict management; and promote understanding (Larson & Yao, 2005)...
 

Empathic engagement takes a person outside of himself or herself and allows the person to hear others with the third ear and to view the world of others with the mind's eye. Empathic engagement brings unity from diversity, making all of us akin regardless of sex, ages, race, culture, religion, and other devises factors...
 

Because a person cannot hate "the other" once empathy bonds them together, empathy can be viewed as a remedy for the psyche and soul of humankind."" (pg 214)


'Ten approaches for enhancing empathy in health and human services cultures. 2009-01-22
 by Mohammadreza Hojat

"Others have suggested that the capacity for empathy in people in general can serve as a foundation for building interpersonal relationships that have a buffering effect against stress and can be an essential step in conflict resolution (Kremer & Dietzen, 1991). As the author has noted "empathy can be viewed as a remedy for the psyche and soul of human kind...And may be it can serve as a means of achieving a global peace here, there, everywhere on earth." (Hojat, 2007, p. 214).
 

 

Benefits of Focusing.

A process developed by Gene Genlin a student of Carl Rogers. It's an empathic process. “Focusing” is to enter into a special kind of awareness, different from our every day awareness. It is open, turned inward, centered on the present and on your body’s inner sensations. When doing Focusing, you silently ask, “How am I now?”
"Focusing permits you to:

  • understand what you are truly feeling and wanting

  • surmount obstacles, make decisions and solve problems creatively

  • become more attentive and friendly to yourself and others

  • integrate body, mind and spirit

  • find relief from tension and chronic pain

  • be independent from external belief systems

  • deepen and make more effective the process of counseling and psychotherapy"

 

The benefits of empathy: When empathy may sustain cooperation in social dilemmas
   Ann C. Rumble, Paul A. M. Van Lange, Craig D. Parks

"Cooperation in social dilemmas is often challenged by negative noise, or unintended errors, such that the actual behavior is less cooperative than intended—for example, arriving later than intended for a meeting due to an unusual traffic jam. ....
We conclude that empathy has broad benefits for social interaction, in that it can be an effective tool for coping with misinterpreted behaviors, thereby maintaining or enhancing cooperation."

 

Empathy, Listening Skills Relationships
By: Lawrence J. Bookbinder, PhD

"Benefits to the Talker

  • Experiencing a psychological hug is one of several possible benefits for the talker.

  • Re-experiencing joy and one's own personal power and choice

  • Making sense of a puzzling situation

  • Becoming aware of unconscious feelings

  • Experiencing relief from distress

  • Ending a conflict about a decision

  • Gaining needed clarity to make a decision about next steps or actions to take

  • Obtaining relief from health problems such as asthma, insomnia, headaches, back pain"

Benefits for the Acknowledger

We tend to focus on the benefit to the talker rather than the "acknowledger", yet both gain real
and powerful benefits. The process itself is one of mutuality where both individuals are enriched.
Possible benefits for the "acknowledger” include:

  • Absorbing some of the joy, clarity, peace or other benefits the talker experiences

  • Feeling good about giving another an opportunity to talk about something that matters to him or
    her

  • Reducing conflict or avoiding a quarrel with another by careful listening & mutual inquiry

  • Broadening your horizons and expanding your world by listening to another whose values and views are radically different from your own

  • Feeling psychologically hugged by the talker"



How Parents Can Cultivate Empathy in Children
Richard Weissbourd and Stephanie Jones
Making Caring Common Project, Harvard Graduate School of Education

"Empathy is at the heart of what it means to be human.

  • It’s a foundation for acting ethically,

  • for good relationships of many kinds,

  •  for loving well,

  • and for professional success.

  • And it’s key to preventing bullying and many other forms of cruelty. "
     

10 Steps to Awakening Self-Compassion
by: Marty Cottler,

"Benefits of Self-Compassion

Research indicates that cultivating self-compassion can contribute to beneficial physical, emotional-mental, and interpersonal changes, such as:

  • Modulates hormonal functioning, especially of oxytocin and cortisol

  • Reduces the intensity and frequency of negative and chronic stress reactions

  • Copes with difficult emotional experiences

  • Moderates depression and anxiety

  • Increases emotional well being

  • Mitigates negative thinking, including rumination

  • Improves interpersonal relationships

  • Enhances patience, generosity, gratitude, acceptance, humility, openness, and gentleness"

 

Empathy is a Research Method
 Jane Goodall   Video1, Video2

"I was told you have to give them numbers because you’ve got to be objective as a scientist, and you mustn't empathise with your subjects and I feel this is where science has gone wrong. To have this coldness, this lack of empathy has enabled some scientist to do unethical behaviour. More over, why deny a perfectly respectable tool? I think those two are behaving like that because that’s how I would behave if I was in that situation, that’s empathy. Once you’ve worked out why you think they are doing that, then you can start testing that. Am I right? Is this a valid assumption or not? But it gives you the groundwork for asking questions, ... I think empathy is really important and I think only when our clever brain and our human heart work together in harmony can we achieve our full potential. “ 
 

 

 

From A META-ANALYSIS OF EMPATHY TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR CLIENT POPULATIONS by Robert Paul Butters

"The meta-analysis of 24 studies of empathy training programs reveal that overall, empathy training programs are associated with increases in empathy (g = 0.911)."
Benefits of empathy

  • "Empathy is a critical component in prosocial behaviors and moderates aggressive behavior (Eisenberg & Miller, 1988)

  • and the absence of empathy is a hallmark of autism and psychopathy (Blair, 2008).

  • Empathy helps individuals establish and maintain friendships (Del Barrio, Aluja, & Garcia, 2004; Hay, 1994),

  • enhances satisfaction in intimate relationships (Long, Angera, & Hakoyama, 2008),

  • improves the quality of family relationships (Guerney, 1988),

  • positively associated with family cohesion, parental support, and communicative responsiveness (Henry, Sager, & Plunkett, 1996).

  • Empathy has been positively correlated with helping behaviors and negatively correlated with aggression (Jolliffe & Farrington, 2006a; Mehrabian & Epstein, 1972).

  • Studies indicate that increases in empathy can reduce sexual assaults and the incidence of domestic violence (Berg, Lonsway, & Fitzgerald, 1999; Foubert, 2006; O’Donohue, 2003).

  • Further support for the salutary effects of empathy comes from studies of parent training programs, where increasing parental empathy is believed to reduce children’s aggressive and acting-out behaviors (Eyberg, Nelson, & Boggs, 2008; McMahon & Washburn, 2003).

  • Further, some research has demonstrated that improving empathy through family and couples counseling leads to improved relationships and decreased family problems (Long, 1999)."

  • "Empathy is a core component in human relationships and a cornerstone of effective interpersonal skills (Carkhuff & Truax, 1965)."

  • we see empathic responding and relating as a central process in development, socializations, and healthy functioning.

  • Lack of empathy has been linked to disrupted attachments, trauma, neglect, or other life experiences that preclude the  development or expression of empathy (Garber, 1997).

  • 1997). Empathy helps individuals establish and maintain friendships (Del Barrio et al., 2004; Hay, 1994);

  • enhances satisfaction in intimate relationships (Davis & Oathout, 1987);

  • improves the quality of family relationships (Guerney, 1988);

  • positively associated with family cohesion, parental support, and communicative responsiveness (Henry et al., 1996).

  • empathy is related to social intelligence and can serve as a moderator for all forms of aggression in adolescence (Bandura, 1999; Burke, 2001; Feshbach, 1987; Jolliffe & Farrington, 2006a; Miller & Eisenberg, 1988).

  • Many of the most promising parenting and child abuse prevention programs emphasize empathic responding as a core component to reduce externalizing behaviors and improving attachment (Wiehe, 1997).

  • If we increase empathy through training we may be able to decrease

    • child abuse (Weihe, 1997),

    • aggression towards others (Jolliffe, 2006a),

    • sexual assault (Anderson & Whiston, 2005),

    • child molestation (Marshall et al., 1996),

    •  interpersonal violence (O’Donohue, 2003),

    • and criminal recidivism (Jackson, 2009).

Increases in empathy also have a positive impact on

  • social functioning (Del Barrio et al., 2004),

  •  parenting practices (Kaminski, Valle, Filene, & Boyle, 2008),

  • family relationships (Guerney, 1988),

  • and moral development (Kagan, 1984)."

A lack of empathy,

  • conversely, implies the inability to view the world from other individuals' perspectives or to feel sympathy toward their suffering (Davis, 1994)

  • and a predisposition toward prejudice (McFarland, 1998).

  • Impairment in empathy is a primary diagnostic characteristic of pervasive developmental disorders, like autism, and psychotic
    disorders, like schizophrenia, and has been strongly linked to aggression (Wiehe, 1997), psychopathy (Blair 2008),

  • criminal behaviors, and sexual offending (Varker et al., 2008).

  • Low levels of empathy in adolescents are also associated with bullying others (Endresen & Olweus, 2001; Jolliffe & Farrington, 2006a).

  • In contrast, high levels of empathy in adolescents are positively associated with helping behaviors toward victimized schoolmates (Gini et al., 2007)

  • and, more generally, with prosocial and helping behaviors (Davis, 1994; Eisenberg et al., 2006; Eisenberg & Miller, 1987; Hoffman, 2000).

Why Empathy  (Empathetics Website) (in Healthcare)

"More satisfied patients, higher reimbursement, less stress.

  • Patient satisfaction is critical to determining healthcare provider and institutional reputations. Medical professionals who communicate with empathy have higher patient satisfaction ratings. (Riess, 2012)

  • Over 80% of malpractice claims are the result of communication failures and the likelihood of an unhappy outcome is correlated to low physician empathy. (Hickson, 2002; Levinson, 2004)

  • Patients who experience empathic care have better medical outcomes. (Hojat, 2011; Rakel, 2009; Kaptchuck, 2008)

  • Adherence to treatment recommendations increases when medical professionals deliver patient-centered, compassionate care. (Halpern, 2010)

  • Communicating empathically increases clinician job satisfaction and reduces burnout. (Krasner, 2009; Shanafelt, 2009; West, 2011)

  • Enhanced empathic care and physician well-being are highly correlated. (Shanafelt, 2005)

  • Empathic clinician communication improves the quality of all interactions with others; patients, their families, colleagues, and loved ones. (Halpern, 2012)"

 

EMPATHY ON THE EDGE: SCALING AND SUSTAINING A HUMAN-CENTERED (IDEO) (human-centered design)

"Empathy is a powerful force. Research shows that when we are empathetic, we enhance our ability to receive and process information. Putting ourselves in someone else’s shoes—a part of our subconscious behavior—causes measurable changes in our cognitive style, increasing our so-called field-dependent thinking. This type of thinking helps us put information in context and pick up contextual cues from the environment, which is essential when we’re seeking to understand how things relate to one another, literally and figuratively.

 

 Research also shows that we are more helpful and generous after an empathic encounter (Decety and Ickes, 2011). Taken together, this empathetic behavior personally motivates us to solve design challenges. "

 

Making A Better Relationship – With Empathy by Paul Parkin 

"Empathy is a wonderful skill because it it allows humans to identify with the entire range of emotions experienced by others, it enables us to connect with each other and form groups and communities. People who find it difficult to be empathic, will usually find it difficult to make and sustain close committed relationships and friendships.


Empathy is essential to effective and good friendships and relationships because it opens up the channels for good communication which is essential to forming and maintaining mutual support, a major factor of close bonding....
 

By listening and understanding you will be giving your relationship a real boost if you persevere: without empathy your loved ones won’t feel understood, respected, cared for, or ultimately loved, so try, start practicing today. If you don’t understand, it’s fine to say so and ask your partner or friend to try to express how they feel.""

 

The benefits of Empathy by Wes Bertrand

  • For giving:

    • Builds trust—thus allows for transparency of oneself

    • Allows authentic self to come forward (rather than defenses of self, or masks)

    • Enables focus on what truly matters between human beings, i.e., honest expression of what’s alive in them

    • .....

  • For receiving:

    • Builds trust—thus allows for transparency of oneself

    • Allows authentic self to come forward (rather than defenses of self, or masks)

    • Enables one to feel accepted and understood–really heard (rather than being moralistically judged)

    • ...

  • For systems, when practiced consistently:

    • Builds trust—thus allows for transparency of persons and reveals the systemic constraints on them

    • Invites individuals to be fully real, genuine, rather than to wear masks and play roles

    • Shifts focus from following rules and policies to identifying feelings and meeting human needs

    • ...

 

 

 

Benefits in the Area of Business

The Impact of Empathy on Leadership Effectiveness  among Business Leaders
by Wan Abdul Rahman, W. A., Patricia Ann Castelli

  • Benefits

  • Empathy Promotes effective leadership in Business

  • Empathy helps businesses stay competitive

    • "To stay competitive it is imperative that business leaders to acquire empathy skills so that they can relate effectively to diverse groups of employees, and achieve the desired results demanded by today’s global market (Kayworth & Leidner, 2002). "

  • Empathy helps leaders better understand other peoples’ perspectives and opinions

  • Empathy makes the work environment more enjoyable and productive.

    • "According to Voss, Gruber, and Reppel (2010), empathy skills allow leaders to understand better other peoples’ perspectives and opinions, making the work environment more enjoyable and productive. "

  • Empathy helps leaders lead others to greater effectiveness.

    • Goleman (1995) states that empathy is a must-have virtue for leaders because it can inspire, motivate, envision, and lead others to greater effectiveness.

  • Empathy helps leaders connect with their people.

  • Empathy helps leaders make all their people feel included

    • Goleman (1995) added that empathy has an important role in leadership because empathy enables leaders to connect with their people. Empathy ensures that connections occur between people so that everybody is included and no employee feels left out, and as such, an empathic leader is perceived as an effective leader (Cockerell, 2009).

  • Empathy helps increases employee optimism, motivation, and commitment, as well as organizational vision

    • An effective leader increases employee optimism, motivation, and commitment, as well as organizational vision (Goleman, Boyatzis, & McKee, 2002).

  • Empathy helps leaders adapt to multicultural differences.

    • According to Leslie, Dalton, Ernst, and Deal (2002), and McCuddy and Cavin (2008), in the rapidly growing global market there are more leaders working across borders, distances, and cultural boundaries. These leaders need to adapt to multicultural differences, have exceptional knowledge of business operations, have effective time management skills, and be able to act and think beyond traditional boundaries.

  • Empathy helps leaders take the perspective of others

    • Additionally, being an effective leader requires the ability to take the perspective of others (McCormick, 1999). McCormick (1999) further notes that the ability to take the perspective of others means that leaders should be able to see the world through others’ eyes.

  • Empathy promotes behaviors that are needed for effective leadership

    • Thus, leaders must acquire empathy to promote behaviors that are necessary for effective global leadership (Bailie, 2011)


The Benefits of Emotional Intelligence and Empathy to Entrepreneurship
by Ronald H. Humphrey

"This paper reviews the literature on emotional intelligence/competencies and relates it to entrepreneurship. Emotional intelligence/competencies are positively related to job performance, leadership, and physical and mental health. This paper also reviews the research on another emotion-related trait, empathy. Empathy is related to leadership emergence and effectiveness, and empathic leaders have followers who experience less stress and physical symptoms. This paper generates nine propositions that relate emotional intelligence/competencies and empathy to entrepreneurship.

 

Entrepreneurs high on emotional intelligence/competencies will

  • (1) be more emotionally resilient when facing obstacles,

  • (2) be more successful at handling intense emotions when working with family members, and

  •  (3) they will work more effectively with their employees, customers, and other stakeholders and they will be rated higher on leadership by their employees. High emotional intelligence will give entrepreneurs

  •  (4) an advantage in developing new products and services, and

  • (5) in negotiating with financial backers, vendors and suppliers, distributors and retailers, and with their employees. Entrepreneurs high on empathy will be more successful at

  • (6) motivating and leading their employees, and

  • (7) helping their employees cope with workplace stresses. They will be

  • (8) more attuned to their customers’ wants and have higher customer satisfaction, and

  • (9) be more innovative."

 

Compassion

The Unexpected Benefits of Compassion for Business  (Compassion)

by Emma Seppala - Psychology Today

Compassionate workplaces - good for employees AND the corporate bottom line.


Compassion: Our First Instinct   (Compassion)
Compassion’s Surprising Benefits for Physical and Psychological Health
by Emma Seppala - Psychology Today

  • tremendous benefits for both physical and mental health and overall well-being"

  • "enjoy better mental and physical health and speeds up recovery from disease; furthermore",

  • compassion relieves stress and inflammation which makes you healthier and live longer.

 

Connect To Thrive: Social Connection Improves Health, Well-Being & Longevity (Compassion)
by Emma Seppala - Psychology Today


"We all know the basics of health 101: eat your veggies, go to the gym and get proper rest. But how many of us know that social connection is as important? Social connection improves physical health and psychological well-being. One telling study showed that lack of social connection is a greater detriment to health than obesity, smoking and high blood pressure. On the the flip side, strong social connection leads to a 50% increased chance of longevity.  Social connection strengthens our immune system (research by Steve Cole shows that genes impacted by social connection also code for immune function and inflammation), helps us recover from disease faster, and may evenlengthen our life. People who feel more connected to others have lower rates of anxiety and depression. Moreover, studies show they also have higher self-esteem, are more empathic to others, more trusting and cooperative and, as a consequence, others are more open to trusting and cooperating with them. Social connectedness therefore generates a positive feedback loop of social, emotional and physical well-being...."
 

The Best Kept Secret to Happiness: Compassion  (Compassion)

by Emma Seppala - Psychology Today - November 5, 2012

"What can we take away from this research? That material goods may give us fun short-term pleasure but that long-term happiness and fulfillment lies less in what we can take than what we can give. Compassion may just be the best kept secret to being not just happy but also healthy, wealthy, and wise."

  • Compassion Makes You Happy

  • Compassion Makes You Wise

  • Compassion Makes You Attractive

  • Compassion Gives You Money and Time

  • Compassion Boosts Your Health

  • Compassion Uplifts & Spreads


Six Good Reasons to Create a Compassionate Workplace (Compassion)

by Andy Fraser 

" let's define a compassionate workplace as follows: a work environment where people feel valued and supported, and are encouraged to develop their skills and reach their full potential. Here are six things I learned about why this matters:"

1. Stress is bad for business...

2. Compassion boosts the bottom line...

3. Givers come out on top...

4. Compassion makes us happier and healthier...

5. Kindness is contagious...

6. Everyone wins...

 

SeedsOfCompassion.org - Why It Matters > Benefits  (Compassion)

"Why develop compassion in your life? Well, there are scientific studies that suggest there are physical benefits to practicing compassion — people who practice it produce 100 percent more DHEA, which is a hormone that counteracts the aging process, and 23 percent less cortisol — the “stress hormone.”

But there are other benefits as well, and these are emotional and spiritual. The main benefit is that it helps you to be more happy, and brings others around you to be more happy. If we agree that it is a common aim of each of us to strive to be happy, then compassion is one of the main tools for achieving that happiness. "

 

8 Wonderful Psychological Effects of Being Compassionate  (Compassion)
by Jeremy Dean   

Here are eight psychology studies which show the effects of exercising your humanity.