Having empathy is what makes us human. The ability to listen, learn, teach, connect, share, love, cry. Without empathy, our relationships will not be meaningful. Without empathy, we are not human.
Sherry Turkle has done a lot of research in the field of digital media and screens. Based on what she’s learned, the more time we spend in front of a screen, the less empathetic we are.
In particular, when you put young people in a summer camp that is device free, after 5 days, you see the markers for empathy increase. So we can do something about it. And decreasing screen time while also increasing human interaction is a great start to making a change.
This video, created by the Cleveland Clinic, is a wonderful example of how everyone is dealing with something – some good, some not so good. Having the ability to ask questions, take time, listen, and be there for each other will help improve so many areas in our lives. Build empathy by practicing those skills.