Why Tactical Empathy is Important
There are messages that talk about the importance of empathy.
By empathizing with others, it’s easier to be a great citizen.
How about the opposite?
Is empathizing too much a recipe for disaster?
I believe there are certain ways to execute moves.
Without empathizing correctly, you may coddle someone.
Or may pity them.
When helping others out, I realized that it’s smart to appeal to their spirit side.
The side that wants more.
Not their baby side, who wants to run away from conflict.
By appealing to their spirit side, tactical empathy is unlocked.
This is a form of empathy that inspires others to be better.
Why give a man a fish when you can teach them how to fish?
The Day I Realized the Importance of Tactical Empathy
I saw this video a while back of a tubby man sitting on a bench.
That’s when he was approached by a wealthy man.
The wealthy man asks the tubby man:
‘How may I serve you today? My life’s mission is to serve others.’
I think it’s one thing if he left it at that.
But what happened next was peculiar.
The tubby man said:
‘You can light my cigarette for me.’
That’s when the wealthy man, like an obedient puppy, lit the man’s cigarette.
And then asked:
I never understood that mindset.
Where someone is willingly serving others as a servant.
That doesn’t seem like the mindset of a winner.
The wealthy man should have given this man tips on how to be wealthy.
Or how to get fit.
From what I could tell, the wealthy man was in shape.
Or just had a conversation with him.
Why immediately approach the man as a servant?
Is that the go-to move when thinking of being charitable?
This is the outlandish behavior someone does when they empathize without much insight.
What is Tactical Empathy?
‘What is the essence of empathy, Armani?’
It’s to see yourself in someone else.
This mindset is unlocked when a person becomes relatable.
It’s harder than ever to see others as relatable nowadays.
Especially with the divisive media, identity politics, and groupthink.
Finding the similarities in people happens subtly…
Did you ever have that moment when you put Elmer’s glue on your hand, watched it dry, then peeled it off to satisfaction?
‘Uh…I have. How did you know?’
Because I did the same thing!
You ever had that moment when you would click that tendon under one of your knee’s anytime you passed a streetlight during a long drive?
‘What the fuck?? I did!’
These are subtleties of seeing similarities with someone.
By spotting similarities, it’s easier to empathize.
A way to cheat code this process is by becoming a creator of some sort.
That’s when the mindset shifts from:
- Node -> System
- Pixels -> Picture
- Fingers -> Palm
If I go to a garden, I will see a bunch of random flowers.
Tulips, roses, and daisies.
The gardener will see the garden FIRST.
THEN he will see the tulips, roses, and daisies.
Although it’s subtle, the difference in perception is profound.
I saw the differences first.
The gardener so the unity first.
When a person becomes a creator in some way, like the gardener, it’s easier to perceive unity first.
Tactical Empathy vs Coddling
I wrote a book called Tough Love, which you can get on Amazon:
In this book, I broke down the concept of why tough love is a gift when given effectively.
‘What was your rationale?’
Tough love engages someone’s spirit side.
It makes them want more.
But just barking at them aimlessly will not do it.
Proper tough love requires intent & a refined delivery.
- To properly give tough love, it’s all about engaging the narrative mind of a person.
It’s difficult to engage someone else’s narrative mind when you only see differences.
But let’s say you’re at the stage of your life where you see the garden before the roses, tulips, and daisies.
It’s easier to spot which buttons to click to make the Phoenix in them rise.
The Phoenix is the mythical bird that willingly sets itself on fire to come back stronger.
Tough love can be delivered through:
Brute force is what you may have initially pictured when I said ‘tough love.’
It’s the brash, upfront approach.
It’s important to know who you can do this move with.
If you’re a coach of some sort, you’ll notice some clients want you to call them out on their bullshit.
While others want a more delicate approach.
Ultimately, tough love is awakening someone’s spirit side.
Much more potent than lighting a tubby man’s cigarette for him.
Why Traditional Empathy Fails
‘Why do you think traditional empathy fails?’
It’s because empathy is viewed more as a command rather than a process.
If I go to someone who doesn’t know how to cook and keep saying:
Then they will be confused.
At most, this person will move sloppily.
They won’t measure anything with the tablespoon.
Won’t wash their dishes & utensils when complete.
And their food will be edible, but not delicious.
Likewise, when someone says, ‘you have to empathize.’
The mind will have a subpar understanding of the command.
Get more specific.
My definition is awakening their spirit side.
For you, that may still be ambiguous.
Find your own definition.
Find a way to empower them, rather than drain them?
You like that definition?
‘Yea, I like that.’
Why Empathy Leads to Fearlessness
This blog discusses soft skills.
Also known as communication skills.
And to communicate properly, it’s wise to invest in:
I call them the 4-fecta.
Fearlessness is the ability to create insulation from yourself and the world.
That’s when the thoughts all flow towards a target.
People work like an electrical circuit.
Without the battery, the electrons flow aimlessly.
With the battery, the electrons flow in a direction.
- Flowing electrons = Electricity.
With electricity, you better have strong insulation! Insulation is the plastic around the copper that prevents you from getting shocked.
That insulator in context to life is fearlessness.
Empathy helps strengthen the insulation.
When you see yourself in someone else, the thoughts all flow towards 1 direction.
Your grander self.
Now you see the garden first, before all the separate flowers…
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