Quiz: How to Know If You’re an Empath

posted in: Empathy | 118

Hello! After studying empathy and emotions for four decades, I’ve developed a very simple and accurate way to tell if you’re an empath. Are you ready to find out? Karla McLaren’s Amazingly Accurate Quiz for Empaths Question 1: Are you breathing? Yes/No (choose one) Yes? You’re an empath. No? Take a breath and start over at Question 1. (spoiler alert) Congratulations! You’re an empath! That’s a … Read More

Emotion work revisited!

posted in: Empathy | 21

I’ve had the opportunity to bring my work into the corporate world recently, and I’m having such a wonderful time! In Emotional Dynamics at Work®, we’re working on emotions, empathy, and the crucial concept of emotion work, and I want to share it with you. Understanding emotion work In her groundbreaking book, The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling, sociologist Arlie Hochschild (pronounced hoke-shilled) described what … Read More

A surprising new empathic skill: Complaining! (Consciously!)

posted in: Empathic Skills | 16

When people think of empathy, they tend to see it as a soft skill, full of yielding and niceness. That’s a part of empathy, but there’s a deeper and more full-bodied form of empathy that helps you engage with people when they (and you!) are not feeling nice at all. In The Art of Empathy, I share a number of relationship skills for dealing with conflict … Read More

The Six Essential Aspects of Empathy, Part 4: Perspective Taking

posted in: Empathy | 0

Learning to see and feel from the perspective of others Your Perspective Taking ability helps you imaginatively see and feel things from the perspectives of others. This skill is crucial to your ability to empathize skillfully; good Perspective Taking can help you understand what others want and need. Let’s revisit the six aspects so that we can understand where Perspective Taking fits into the larger picture: … Read More

The Six Essential Aspects of Empathy, Part 3: Emotion Regulation

posted in: Empathy | 0

Learning to work with your emotions Your Emotion Regulation skills help you feel, understand, and work with your own emotions. These abilities are crucial to your capacity to empathize skillfully; good Emotion Regulation skills can make your experience of empathy much more comfortable! Let’s revisit the six aspects so that we can understand where Emotion Regulation fits into the larger picture: Emotion Contagion: Before empathy can … Read More

The Six Essential Aspects of Empathy, Part 2: Empathic Accuracy

posted in: Empathy | 0

Becoming accurate with your empathy The crucial second aspect of empathy, Empathic Accuracy, helps you identify and understand emotions in yourself and others. This skill can make your experience of empathy much more precise and workable! Let’s revisit the six aspects so that we can understand where Empathic Accuracy fits into the larger picture: Emotion Contagion: Before empathy can take place, you need to sense that … Read More

Ingenious stagnation — Understanding depression

posted in: Emotions | 20

Discovering the gifts of depression Situational depression arises when some aspect of your life is already unworkable or dysfunctional; depression stops you for a vital reason. When we looked at the gifts of sadness, I talked about what I call the fundamental correlation error that I see with many emotions — which is that people blame emotions for making them feel bad, rather than understanding that … Read More

Welcoming the gifts of anxiety

posted in: Emotions | 8

There are gifts in anxiety? Yes! People are often very surprised to learn that anxiety contains specific gifts, because anxiety is usually described only in terms of disorder or disease. However, at its most subtle level, anxiety (which is related to fear) helps you plan for the future and complete important tasks. Really! When I look at the problem of nuance, I see that so many … Read More

Fear: Intuition, instincts, and awareness

posted in: Emotions | 10

Welcoming the gifts of fear! As we take an empathic tour through the emotional realm, we’ve started with the emotions that help you set boundaries: Anger, guilt and shame, the masking state of apathy, and hatred. Today, we’ll look at an intuitive emotion that helps you orient yourself, connect with your instincts, and keep yourself safe: fear. Fear arises to orient you to change, novelty, or … Read More

Understanding multiple emotions

posted in: Emotions | 19

 The Wonderful World of Multiple Emotions! There are four ideas about emotions that are widely shared and accepted — yet are absolutely problematic. These four commonly accepted ideas actually prevent you from being able to approach your emotions — or anyone else’s — intelligently. They are: The problem with valencing (imagining that there are positive or negative emotions, or pro-social or anti-social emotions) The problem with … Read More

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