[VIDEO] What is empathy? And why do you need this skill?

Empathy is an essential skill to be able to communicate well with others – both in personal and professional relationships. The question is what exactly do we mean by ‘empathy’? And what do you do if you can’t or don’t want to show empathy? I examine this more closely in the video below.

The 5 takeaways from the video

  • Empathy sits at the mind level, sympathy at the heart level. 
  • Empathy means that you put yourself in the emotional shoes of another person mentally
  • With empathy, you show understanding for the other person’s situation; with sympathy, you share their feelings.
  • The reason why people sometimes avoid empathic behaviour is because they fear slipping into sympathy. 

Research in the US has shown that insurance claims are considerably higher for doctors who didn’t show empathy after a professional error than for those who did show empathy.


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