In our course “Living the 5 Virtues” we read What We Say Matters by Ike and Judith Lasater. This book explores the concept of non-violent communication. This read marked the third time I have read this book. This read had special significance and helped me understand so much more about myself.
One of the concepts introduced in the book is self-empathy. This isn’t time that you take to feel sorry for yourself, but time you take to discover what it is that you are feeling and what need you had that went unmet. This may not seem important at first glance, but if you aren’t sure what you are feeling or what needs you have; then how can you communicate this effectively to someone around you? How can you really communicate clearly with someone else if you don’t know this for yourself?
The next time you find yourself getting upset, view the lists below. First, notice exactly what it is you are feeling. Next, notice what need it is that you have that was not met. When you have the right combination that is your truth, you will feel a wave of understanding and softening. This is self-empathy. It is not pity. It is not wallowing. It is a deep understanding of right where you are.
May this help you live a life where you know exactly what you are feeling and what you need. May you express this to those around you with kindness and care.