Love Skill #19 – Listen with Empathy


Love Skill #19

Listen with Empathy 

By Dr. Scott Peck & Shannon Peck 


Listening with empathy
is the most profound & convincing way to say
“I love you!”

Empathy is a rare skill on Earth – so far. That will change, however, as people discover the immense love riches that pour forth from listening to others with empathy.

Empathy is the love skill of tuning in to another person with so much sensitivity that you can sense what the other person is feeling and understand what the other person is saying with great accuracy. Yet you remain independent at the same time.

Sympathy with another person causes you to become lodged, even trapped in their “story” and feelings. Empathy, on the other hand, means that you can put yourself in another’s shoes and sense how he or she feels. Empathy causes you to know and love another at the deepest level of compassion yet still maintain your own detachment and freedom.

Empathy is perhaps the #1 tool of counselors and therapists because they know your heart needs to be heard and understood. When someone’s heart is genuinely heard, he or she feels relief, understanding, care, and love.

Do you know anyone whose heart needs to be heard and understood? On a scale of 1 to 10, to what extent do your spouse, children, best friends, co-workers, and everyone else you know, feel they are truly heard and understood by you?”

For many of these people, the answer to this question may be low. Why? Because when people sense that you are not genuinely tuned in, they stop sharing from their heart. Hearts need an invitation of real love to share openly. You may not even realize that you are the catalyst for their shut down.

Here’s the good news. Listening with empathy is not a difficult love skill to learn. Most people are just not accustomed to doing it – or have never been taught how.

Here’s how to practice and refine the skill of listening with empathy.

When someone begins to talk, hit the mute button on your internal self talk and let your entire focus be acutely tuned to hearing what the other person is saying. Stay silent. This is their moment. Allow yourself to deeply hear, feel, and understand what they are saying or feeling. Don’t worry about the details. Just keep listening with keen awareness and no distractions. The other person will feel the depth of your caring without you even saying a word. You deserve to receive this quality of love as well.

The advantages of empathy are like discovering a love gold mine. Other’s hearts feel safe, heard, understood, and deeply loved by you. You discover all sorts of new and valuable things about others.

Listening with empathy creates deep intimacy and is one of the top love skills of a Love Master.


Empathy is Love in action

Action Step

As you flow through your day today, catch yourself,
& allow your heart to listen with empathy
to the Love Being in front of you

Go to Next Love Skill         Return to Love Course

Copyright (c) 2006-2017 by Scott & Shannon Peck

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