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How can we express empathy?

clarity engineers meaningful connections Jul 11, 2020

How can we express empathy? What are the vocal variety mechanics for this particular emotion? 

Even if we are advanced speakers of English, these complex emotions can be challenging to convey authentically.

Try saying:  I didn’t know how to handle the situation /\ without hurting his feelings. 

Now, add a pause where you see the /\. Try saying the phrase before the /\ quickly and the phrase after the /\ slowly - how does that change the underlying meaning? Be sure to align you tone of voice and your facial expression to build trust and credibility ...and human connections with your listeners. This vocal strategy will help you to express empathy.

Try these:

1.    I didn’t know how to handle the situation ^ without hurting his feelings.

2.   How could she possibly think ^ that I didn’t care?

 

Play with these sentences. This can be a fun activity to practice with kids, as they too need to understand that the way they say their words affects the relationship.

 

Thank you to Futures and Design at Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford (d.school ) for use of the amazing image below.