Empathy vs. Sympathy vs. Stoicism
There is a problem in the United States of America and it is running rampant. People are either being way too emotional and then there is a overly nauseating sense of logic in the world as well.
Which is right?
Which is wrong?
Can there be a balance?
Yes, simply put, there is a solution and it is so beyond simple, that anyone can use it and not feel like a ball busting bitch in the office if they are a woman or a big wimpy softy of a man in the boardroom.
There are three core components to this Best Philosophy for Entrepreneurs.
Empathy, Sympathy, and Stoicism
These three basic circles of thought around these words are powerful on their own but like a sports car with a hi-tech manual stick shift, you need to know which gear to use and why it will work best.
Let’s crank out gear number one, Stoicism!
Stoicism or being a Stoic came into style during the Roman Empire when a wise philosopher named, Seneca, became a valued resource to heads of state for the Roman Empire as well as businessmen and senators and clergy.
What Seneca was a philosophy to living your life with as little emotions as necessary. This provided himself and others that listened to him to be considered as being free from sadness, anxiety, and depression. The great news, it works. Just think about it, how often do you see Mr. Spock on Star Trek burst into tears or have a panic attack?
How often do you see Mr. Spoke have fun and laugh and enjoy himself?
This is in where the problem or challenges come to light. When we cut out our emotions we also cut out the good emotions. Such, Love, Happiness, Joy, and Calm or Peace. Seneca places more importance on the path of logic to take a person to their goals and their successes then their emotions. So what is there to feel good about when a stoic person arrives at their goal? Can they fully rejoice and let go? Can they relate to the struggles of the journey when speaking or mentoring others that have yet to find this path?
There is a better way.
Give them your Sympathy!
Sympathy is merely the emotional expression of pity upon another or a group of pepople. A person may be walking down a city street and see a homeless woman who looks likes like she is in terrible health and he will say, “I have so much sympathy for you. Here is some money.” For whatever reason, this person felt pity upon the homeless woman, and that is fine. Still, in a country so much wealth and money and healthcare, how is this behavior of begging on the street for survival someone’s best option to take in life? Sounds fairly logical, doesn’t it? Well, it is completely logical and non-emotional. How does expressing pity upon your coworker or your employees or your employer or family and friends benefit you as a person? There may be instances, of course there are instances where it works but still, is there an improper place for sympathy to not be expressed? Pity is a limited emotion and being sympathetic leaves a person to only communicate in a language of pity and sorrow. Which brings us to Empathy.
What is Empathy?
Empathy is the understanding and the feeling of someone else’s emotions and feelings at that moment. Your friend comes to you and says, “My boyfriend just dumped me!”, and begins crying. You choose to feel bad for her and you can feel her sadness and you know that she is also in need of safety and warmth. Your friend is not looking for pity or a heavily based logic conversation. Mr. Spoke was the Science Officer on the Enterprise, not the Psych Officer. Empathy is an emotion that is expressed much like walking along a river. Imagine that you are walking along a river and you see a man in a boat and he waves to you and says, “Hey! Do you know what it is like to be in this boat with me on the river right now?” If you are being empathetic, you could imagine the feeling of the boat and the waves splashing against the boat, the sun shining on you and the view of the shore from the boat rather than the view of the boat from the show. When you are being empathetic, you are taking on the situation and emotions and feelings of the other person. It can be helpful in many instances but would you benefit from feeling panic whenever someone nearby does? It happens more often then you would believe it to be true. So to recap, we have Super Strict Logic, Super Focused Pity and then the Superhero Emotional Tampon that soaks up all of the drama in the room. So what is the best solution?
It is called the Evolved Empathy.
To be able to have an awareness of the emotions of others without having to feel those emotions and to think and perceive things in your life and those around you with a sense of logic to them that grants you enjoy the journey as well. Sure, things can become strange or uncomfortable or even painful but with Evolved Empathy you can chose for your own sake which is better. To express pity or to express understanding or to be direct and logical. All three are invaluable in the boardroom.
Could we look to the empathy in Sir Richard Branson?
Yes, we can. He expresses pity at times as well and he is also able to person specifically and logically at a high level.
Bill Gates is another example. Mr. Gates is very logical and very focused and then at the same time flips himself into a very sympathetic mode of his desire to give to charity and then he goes into an Evolved Empathy mindset by decided to start a charity with his wife, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
With the understanding of how to solve a problem in regards to a person’s emotions and personal challenges in a logic based manner and by expressing pity as well to show that you are willing not just to help but to help that person in the best possible manner that they can receive it and also to do so in a manner that elevates those receiving the help.
If you are looking at the challenge of having Millennials in the workplace, the marketplace and the economy, this is how you get across to them. This is the new style of leadership that will be the very model behind successful teams.
It is being used in the United States Marine Corps, Law Enforcement, Start-ups and technology. Facebook employees have been reporting a strong urge from Zuckerberg and other top executives to be as empathetic as possible to others in the company and with users of Facebook.
If Technology Companies that are evaluated at over $40 Billion dollars as of the end of the summer in 2016 are performing as such, why are you not changing suite as well?
Simple questions to ask yourself when contemplating the Best Philosophy for Entrepreneurs
For more information on Evolved Empathy Leadership training and training materials, please, feel free to contact me at my personal, email, Adam@ImpactfulChangesHypnosis.com
I will make these materials available to you to review at no cost to you or to your employees.