Growth 4 min read

The One Resolution We Can All Keep

We are all capable of empathy.

Every year on December 31st we countdown with friends and family until we hit zero.

At zero, we cheer, we kiss, we hug and we know that he have a fresh new year ahead of us full of potential and promise.

Many of us make resolutions about how we will change or improve in the upcoming year but statistically only 8% of individuals will follow through with their intentions and then have a great sense of guilt and regret which will make the failure’s effects even worse.

However, there is one promise that we can all actively strive to keep throughout the year because it is in our power to work for it daily.

The one resolution we can keep is to promote empathy towards others and ourselves.

It is easy to judge people quickly and dismiss them without knowing what they are dealing with, but through empathy we are able connect with others and extend understanding and support.

Here are 3 things you can do to keep your resolution be empathetic:

1. Volunteer with the less fortunate.

Chances are you are aware that there are many groups of people who don’t benefit from the same advantages that you do, but you are unlikely to spend much time in their presence.

Without getting to know their struggle, you are less likely to feel true empathy for them. The homeless, the mentally and physically disabled, the terminally ill, and the poor are all groups that can benefit from your assistance and in turn you will be practicing empathy in ways that will change lives.

2. Expand your circle.

Much like the previous example, you can’t empathize with someone if you don’t know where they have come from. This is where meeting people of different backgrounds and personal beliefs will help to grow your capacity for empathy, even for those you may have had negative opinions of previously.

Put yourself in the position to expand your circle by meeting people you wouldn’t usually befriend. Join a book club or bible study, become a leader in a children’s organization, enroll in an art, music, or dance class.
These new environments will introduce you to new point of views that will grow not only your world view but your empathy for your fellow man, no matter how different from you they might be.

3. Hold yourself and others accountable.

 

When there is injustice or ugliness in the world, do you turn a blind eye to it or do you face it and try to bring kindness to the situation? It isn’t unusual for people to ignore the bad that happens in the world because they think they can do nothing to change it.

In actuality, the best way individuals can change a bad situation is by calling it out and demanding justice. In holding people accountable, you are telling them that their behavior is not acceptable in a world that has resolved to choose empathy.

Also, this accountability must have yourself included in it in order to be effective. If you can’t expect empathy from yourself, how can you expect anyone else to be understanding. Calling yourself out when you slip and forget to treat your neighbor or friend with kindness will help you to incorporate empathy in your everyday life.

Resolutions can be hard to keep but every person has it in themselves to show empathy to the world around them if they choose to make it their priority.

Empathy is a resolution that will benefit everyone when it’s kept.

Share your voice

Related

Monkey Bars

Sometimes you have to let go to move on.

Growth 4 min read

Turning Trash Into Treasure

What a repair shop can teach us about second chances.

Growth 2 min read

It’s Time To Put In The Work

It takes more than an idea.

Growth 2 min read

What to read next

    Join the TDJakes.com mailing list

    Sign up to get a weekly serving of motivation and inspiration sent directly to your inbox.