How to practice empathy:
I) Listen, listen, listen.
The idea is first you really listen; then you react. Listening is hard work and everyone can get distracted. Even when we get distracted, we need to pull ourselves together and get back on track to the best of our abilities. During listening, to listen effectively…
1. One must stop comparing himself to the other person. “My experience was harder than his.”
2. One must stop remembering his own experience on the same subject while the other person is talking.
3. One must not consider the verbal give and take as intellectual debate with the goal of putting the other person down.
4. One must not think he knows everything, so he doesn’t need to listen to the other person.
5. One must not laugh off what the other person is saying or try to change the topic before it gets too serious.
6. One has to stop trying to read the other person’s mind.
7. One has to stop thinking about his next step or his answer before the other person finishes talking.
by Joy Cagil