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Video explains the critical difference between empathy and sympathy that everyone should know

Dr. Brené Brown says we need to be vulnerable to help.

brene brown, empathy vs. sympathy rsa

Rsearcher and author Dr. Brené Brown

Dr. Brené Brown gave a talk to the Royal Society for Arts in 2013 called “The Power of Vulnerability,” where she explained that only by embracing vulnerability and imperfection can we live life with courage and authenticity.

Brown is a research professor known for her studies on courage, vulnerability and empathy. She is the author of several books including, "The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are" and "Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts."

One of the most powerful moments in Brown’s talk was when she described the difference between empathy and sympathy. To a lot of people, those concepts seem to be synonymous. However, in this video, Brown explains why “empathy fuels connection while sympathy drives disconnection.”


The video was beautifully animated by Katy Davis.

Brené Brown on Empathy

Brown says we must take on other people's perspectives and recognize them as their truth to be genuinely empathetic. We should also be able to stay out of judgment while recognizing other people’s emotions and communicating that we understand.

Empathy requires us to be vulnerable with someone who is hurting.

“Empathy is feeling with people,” Brown continues. “I always think of empathy. It's this kind of sacred space when someone's kind of in a deep hole and they shout out on the bottom and they say I'm stuck, it's dark, I'm overwhelmed, and then we look and we say, ‘Hey!’ you climb down ‘I know what it's like down here and you're not alone.’”



The video was beautifully animated by Katy Davis.

[Video]

Brown says we must take on other people's perspectives and recognize them as their truth to be genuinely empathetic. We should also be able to stay out of judgment while recognizing other people’s emotions and communicating that we understand.

Empathy requires us to be vulnerable with someone who is hurting.

“Empathy is feeling with people,” Brown continues. “I always think of empathy. It's this kind of sacred space when someone's kind of in a deep hole and they shout out on the bottom and they say I'm stuck, it's dark, I'm overwhelmed, and then we look and we say, ‘Hey!’ you climb down ‘I know what it's like down here and you're not alone.’”

@geaux75/TikTok

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