Empathy: em·pa·thy: The ability to imagine how someone else is feeling in a particular situation and respond with care. – Wisconsin Pyramid Model Training
Empathy allows us to connect to and understand people, to act and react to life based not only on fact, but with an understanding of the human elements involved. It is a common trait among the most giving members of our society, from social workers and teachers, to worldwide humanitarians. Empathy is an incredibly valuable skill, but it is also, like any other skill, one that has to be learned.
You; the parent, the sibling, the grandparent, the teacher, the caregiver, the family support worker, or just the adult who cares, teach children empathy every day, whether you realize it or not. Take a moment to share a warm memory you have of a child in your life making that connection to empathy, whether it is with a hug for a friend who is crying, or laughing out loud, just because you are.
Why? Because tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and there is no greater expression of love we can give the children in our lives than the ability to love and understand others through the empathy they learn from us.