To have compassion means to empathize with someone who is suffering and to feel compelled to reduce the suffering. It’s a fuller, truer definition than feelings alone, and it’s a very biblical understanding.
This definition was taken off the internet, but it gives a very surface explanation about what compassion is and does.
When I was working at one of the biggest companies in my country I had the privilege of working in two different departments and so I will explain my position of compassion from both perspectives. There are two words that we need to understand for us to be effective in showing compassion in your relationship.
There is Empathy which is deeply rooted in our brains and our bodies — it evokes in us the desire to understand other people’s emotions; it’s so rudimentary, it’s actually instinctual. By practising compassion, we can become more resilient and improve our overall well-being.
Are we underestimating the importance of family and social relationships?
Susan Pinker this surprising, entertaining and persuasive new book, shows how face-to-face contact is crucial for learning, happiness, resilience and longevity. From birth to death, human beings are hard-wired to connect to other human beings. Face-to-face contact matters: tight bonds of friendship and love heal us, help children learn, extend our lives and make us happy. Looser in-person bonds matter, too, combining with our close relationships to form a personal “village” around us, one that exerts unique effects.
Not just any social networks will do: we need the real, in-the-flesh encounters that tie human families, groups of friends and communities together. Marrying the findings of the new field of social neuroscience with gripping human stories, Susan Pinker explores the impact of face-to-face contact from cradle to grave, from city to Sardinian mountain village, from classroom to workplace, from love to marriage to divorce.
Her results are enlightening and enlivening, and they challenge many of our assumptions. Most of us have left the literal village behind, and don’t want to give up our new technologies to go back there. But, as Pinker writes so compellingly, we need close social bonds and uninterrupted face-time with our friends and families in order to thrive―even to survive.
Robert Waldinger and George Vaillant conducted a 75 years study and discovered that the key to a healthy life is having healthy relationships.
It is interesting to note in my life that I was healthier when my relationships were healthy. I attended several gyms in my area, I spend hours and hours in the gym, bought what you would call the right stuff for food, drank water throughout the day, however my work environment was very stressful, persons were always competing, backbiting and there was never time to relax, are you qualified, are you good enough?
My breathing was always strained, and I can still remember this pain that was at the back of my neck, it would not go away during the week, but on weekends it would and then comes Sunday evening and it would come right back.
I would have long conversations with myself and I will share this secret with you. Stay in touch with your body.
4 Tips to Get in Touch with Your Feelings Instead of Burying Them
- Dig deep and think about what’s really getting to you.
- Stay committed to communicating your feelings, even if it gets difficult.
- Don’t let yourself reach boiling point in difficult situations.
- Vent your feelings physically.
I was then able to sense when things were not going well with my body by staying connected, my happiness normally comes from having healthy relationships and my body would function on optimum.
This begs the question. “Can we use the knowledge of compassion to improve our happiness and wellbeing?”
Compassion involves allowing ourselves to be moved by suffering and experiencing the motivation to help alleviate and prevent it. An act of compassion is defined by its helpfulness. Qualities of compassion are patience and wisdom; kindness and perseverance; warmth and resolve.
To be compassionate is to feel deeply for another person as they experience the ups and downs associated with life. To be compassionate is to not just tell someone that you care, but also to show them that you care by being there before they even ask for it.
Our world as it is is lacking compassion in the home, school and church. With this pandemic looming over our heads, not only will we suffer from a materialistic perspective but our lives as we know it will plummet into sickness because of the lack of compassion that is being shown to each other.
Showing compassion in our relationship is essential, it is at the very heart of good communication and meaningful relationships. Being compassionate entails imagining being in someone else’s shoes and desiring to ease their suffering. … Witnessing suffering may bring meaning to the pain and can help move a person to the other side of suffering.
Compassion In Your Relationship
“Communication without compassion imprisons us in a world of judgment. Judgment uses language that implies wrongness or badness. “You’re lazy.” “She’s selfish.” “He’s narcissistic.” Blame, insults, and labels don’t enhance life, they alienate it. It’s tempting to judge things as good or evil, right or wrong, or black or white, but we do so out of fear or contempt. Nobody’s needs, least of all our own, will be met that way.
Compassion can be blocked by using comparison as a form of judgment. Compare your own musical accomplishment to that of Mozart and you’ll feel thoroughly demoralized rather than inspired. However, our personal joy in music cannot be compared to anyone else’s, including Mozart.
The most dangerous barrier to compassion is the denial of responsibility for our actions. We all remember the Nazi system of invoking the higher authority, which authorized normal people to commit horrendous crimes against humanity. When we deny responsibility for our actions, we enter dangerous territory and distance ourselves from our humanity.
Even if we may be tempted to say, “she makes me unhappy or he makes me angry,” we need to take responsibility for our expectations, feelings, and actions. We can handle disappointments with understanding and compassion, and at the same time adjust our future expectations of those who continue to disappoint us.” This was taken out of an article by Alison Poulsen, PhD
The purpose of this article is to show that compassion truly works, not only does it adds to our happiness, but it produces antitoxins that help with a healthier and longer life. Showing compassion is not even about the other person, it is about you.