Emma Seppala originates from Paris, France and is Associate
Director at the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education
(CCARE) at Stanford University. She is an Honorary Fellow at the Center for
Investigating Healthy Minds in Madison, Wisconsin.
Her research areas include:
Complementary & Alternative Interventions (yoga, meditation);
The Science of Happiness,
Health, Well-Being; Stress; Trauma;
Emotion and Emotion Regulation; Compassion,
Social Connectedness; Cross-Cultural Psychology.
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"What is Compassion?
What is compassion and how is it different from empathy or altruism? The
definition of compassion is often confused with that of empathy.
Empathy, as defined by researchers, is the visceral or emotional
experience of another personís feelings. It is, in a sense, an automatic
mirroring of anotherís emotion, like tearing up at a friendís sadness.
Altruism is an action that benefits someone else.
It may or may not be accompanied by empathy or
compassion, for example in the case of making a donation for tax
purposes. Although these terms are related to compassion, they are not
identical. Compassion often does, of course, involve an empathic
response and an altruistic behavior. However, compassion is defined as
the emotional response when perceiving suffering and involves an
authentic desire to help."
August 26, 2012
Connect To Thrive: Social Connection Improves Health,
Well-Being & Longevity
"People who feel more connected to others havelower
rates of anxiety and depression.
they also have higherself-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. Unfortunately, the opposite
is also true for those who lack social connectedness. Low social
connection has been generally
in physical and psychological health as well as a higher propensity to
antisocial behavior that leads to further isolation."