Am I empathic or not? 6 Empathy test questions

Am I empathic or not? 6 Empathy test questions

by | Personal development | 0 comments

Esther makes an open-minded but somewhat reserved impression. She has been very involved with the topic of “empathy” lately. Above all, she misses an empathetic attitude among her colleagues. Since she has had to take time off due to the long-term effects of her corona disease, she has not heard from her colleagues.Yet she has always been friendly and social toward others, which is necessary in her job in nursing.

too much empathy

Sometimes she even has the feeling of being too empathetic, of sympathizing too much with others. She often despairs, is angry and disappointed. She asks me if she should address her colleagues about their behavior. At home, she also lacks empathy and encouragement. In her spare time she enjoys being creative, painting and sewing. Her boyfriend likes what she does, but is not very interested in it and gives her little encouragement.

Too little empathy

He works as an IT-man in the computer industry and Esther wonders if this is why he reacts superficially and not very empathically. She, on the other hand, wants conversations with more depth and wants to tell her Freud what’s going on emotionally inside her.

 

OVERVIEW BLOG

1. assistance from the life coach
Test 2: Am I empathic?
What does psychology have to say about empathy?
4. breakdown of the test questions
5. conclusion: empathy test

 

1. assistance life coach

In the first session, I try to get a kind of all-round view together with Esther. We look at their different areas of life and look into their past. I suggest 3 main topics to address: the situation at work, communication with her boyfriend, and her own life goals.

Concerns professional

Esther then tells me that she was on the verge of burnout a few years ago. She had difficulty motivating herself, but nevertheless continued to work, fifty to sixty hours a week, in an almost perfectionist manner. From her boss at the time, she got random praise now and then, but never real recognition. A longer psychotherapy prevented worse at that time.

 

value-free communication

Today, except for some health complaints, she is basically better. She has a healthy self-worth, a sympathetic boyfriend and, until recently, pleasant colleagues. She actually had hardly any problems at work until she had to take a break for health reasons. As for her attitude toward her colleagues, I suggest she have a nonjudgmental conversation with them. That is, a conversation without judgments or accusations. This value-free communication is an important key on the way to empathy.

 

Conclusion of the professional concern

A short time later, as agreed, Esther has a good conversation with her colleagues. It becomes clear to her how much pressure everyone is under. Nor did most of them even know exactly what Esther had to stay home for. They enjoyed the exchange and hope Esther will be part of the team again soon. As a result, her anger has faded and she feels relieved.

 

Request private

As for her relationship with her boyfriend, I suggest that Esther focus more on his strengths, on his positive sides. I also work with Estehr on her own strengths. In particular, we deepen empathic listening. We also use role-playing to practice how she can use her gestures and facial expressions more purposefully. Through their more positive mindsets, Esther is beginning to realize that they themselves have been very demanding lately. It revolved too much around the theme of “empathy.” Your friend is very much empathic, just can’t express himself as well or show his sympathy as directly. Esther wants to deal with the topic of “communication” more intensively in the future.

 

Conclusion private

The last thing we talk about is their values and goals. It turns out that she is quite happy with her work after all. A work with people has always been her vocation. She just needs to learn to be a little more patient. As soon as she feels completely healthy again, she wants to resume her work.

 

Test 2: Am I empathic?

a) When I see a homeless person on the street, I don’t just walk by, I worry about the person’s fate.
b) In movies, I can easily put myself in the characters’ shoes.
c) At work, I can sense pretty quickly when a colleague is at the end of his rope.
d) I sense when, among other things, a neighbor would like to talk and engage in small talk.
e) The worries of others bother me, I sometimes even take these worries home from work.
f) When I see a colleague being treated badly, it reminds me of situations in which I myself was in a helpless situation.

 

What does psychology have to say about empathy?

In psychology, there is no clear definition of empathy. Psychologists agree only that empathy consists of at least two parts: affective and cognitive empathy.

 

Asperger syndrome

The fact that empathy is not easy to interpret is shown by the example of people who have autistic tendencies. They can certainly empathize with others, but often have trouble imagining what is going on in others.

Emotional empathy is therefore easy for them, but perspective-taking is difficult for them.

 

Cognitive empathy

describes the recognition of feelings in others. It’s about perspective taking and putting yourself in others’ shoes (imagination): “I understand what’s going on inside you.” Or, “I see what you feel.”

 

Affective empathy

makes us understand feelings, describes the ability to empathize and share emotions (very physical): “I feel what you feel.”

 

Using empathy manipulatively

However, merely empathizing and putting oneself in another’s shoes is not a sufficient condition for appreciative, emphatic behavior. Unfortunately, those who know what others think, feel or fear can also use this in a manipulative way. In the marketing world, (cognitive) empathy is often misused to sell customers something they mostly don’t need.

Social engineering is a manipulative attempt to obtain important information or data. In this way, individual employees and sometimes even entire companies are harmed.

 

Using empathy appreciatively

To ensure that empathy is sincere and authentic, certain values must be considered to provide guidance. In this context, the American psychologist Carl Rogers speaks of values such as respect, acceptance and openness. This also refers to the role of the psychotherapist or life coach towards patients and clients.

 

Empathy and body language

According to Carl Rogers, the ability to recognize facial expressions and gestures is decisive for whether communication is based on empathy. Both give you direct access to the emotional state of the person you are talking to.

If, for example, the speaker detects a brief hesitation in his counterpart, he can react subtly with a short hand movement (prompting gesture). Thus, he can meet the need of the interlocutor with a simple (emphatic) gesture.

 

4. breakdown of the test questions

a) When I see a homeless person on the street, I don’t just walk by, I worry about the person’s fate. (= pity)

b) In movies, I can easily put myself in the characters’ shoes. (= cognitive)

c) At work, I can sense pretty quickly when a colleague is at the end of his rope. (= affective)

d) I sense when, for example, a neighbor would like to talk and engage in small talk. (= cognitive)

e) The worries of others bother me, I sometimes even take these worries home from work. (= affective)

f) When I see a colleague being treated badly, it reminds me of situations in which I myself was in a helpless situation. (= pity)

 

5. conclusion: empathy test

Compassion and empathy are not always easy to distinguish. In both, we establish an emotional bond with others (often helpless). But we are glad not to be in a similar (hopeless) situation ourselves.

We often feel uncomfortable. The view is optionally somewhat from above and cool. With empathy, the gaze tends to be warm and turned toward.

 

Empathy graphic

Empathy graphic © lifecoach-muenchen

 

© Timo ten Barge [23 .02.2022]

Du hast Fragen, oder möchtest einen Kommentar abgeben? Dann schreibe mir doch gerne eine Nachricht gleich hier unten.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *