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Empathy: Your Greatest Superpower That You Rarely Use

Heather Edwards Mental Health Counseling / Relationships  / Empathy: Your Greatest Superpower That You Rarely Use
Empathy Cape

Empathy: Your Greatest Superpower That You Rarely Use

Grab Your Cape. Let’s heal the world.

Empathy Cape

In a world where scrolling through memes and cat videos consumes more time than meaningful conversations, it’s easy to overlook a superpower that we all possess. No, it’s not flying or invisibility—though that would be cool. I’m talking about empathy.

Empathy is like Wi-Fi for the soul: it connects us to the inner networks of other people’s experiences and emotions. When working properly, it can create understanding, compassion, and, dare I say, world peace. Yet, much like Wi-Fi, it can sometimes be frustratingly unreliable.

Picture this: You’re at a party. You don’t know many people, and you’re nervously clutching your drink like it’s a life preserver. Suddenly, someone approaches and strikes up a conversation. Instead of the usual small talk, they share a personal story about their day—a mix of triumphs and tribulations. You listen, not just with your ears but with your heart. You feel their excitement, worry, and joy. Congratulations, you’ve just experienced empathy in action.

Empathy friends

Empathy isn’t about fixing someone’s problems or offering solutions; it’s about being present and truly understanding what another person is going through. It’s nodding in agreement when your friend rants about their boss, or shedding a tear during a sad movie because you’re connecting with the characters on screen.

Imagine a world where everyone used their empathy superpower daily. Customer service would improve dramatically. Instead of the robotic “Have a nice day,” you’d get a heartfelt “I hope things get better.” Political debates might be less about shouting and more about genuine dialogue. Even road rage might decrease—imagine drivers thinking, “Wow, that person must be really late for something important,” instead of just honking and cursing.

But, like any superpower, empathy requires practice. Here are some fun ways to enhance your empathetic abilities:

1. The Perspective Challenge: Next time you’re in a conversation, try to see the world through the other person’s eyes. What are they feeling? What might their day have been like? It’s like a mental VR experience, but with fewer gadgets.

2. Emotional Mirror: Watch a movie with intense emotional scenes (a Pixar film works wonders). Pay attention to how the characters feel, and let yourself reflect those emotions. It’s a workout for your empathy muscles.

3. Active Listening: In conversations, practice truly listening instead of just waiting for your turn to speak. Ask questions that show you care about understanding their experience.

4. Read Fiction: Dive into books that offer diverse perspectives. Good stories transport you into the lives of others, enhancing your ability to empathize with people who are different from you.

5. Empathy Journal: At the end of the day, write down moments where you felt connected to someone else’s emotions. Reflect on how it felt and what you learned.


Let’s face it: empathy is more necessary than ever. Our increasingly digital and divided world can sometimes make us feel disconnected. But every act of empathy—no matter how small—can create ripples of understanding and kindness. So, next time you’re tempted to scroll past a friend’s lengthy status update or ignore a colleague’s sigh, pause. Put on your empathy cape and listen. Because the world doesn’t need more superheroes; it needs more empathetic humans.

Heather Edwards, LMHC, BCC

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