Giving Empathy But Knowing When To Stop

In this month’s Time Magazine I read a great article by Stephanie Zacharek about the Last Jedi. There’s a lot of high praise for this movie that I have yet to see. I definitely will.

My favorite line of her review is how it concludes:

No matter how much money has been poured into a movie, it’s empathy that matters, and Johnson gives without squandering. His great gift is that he knows when to stop.

I interpreted this as meaning how important it is to cater to your customer’s every desire and need, and then there’s that line you can cross where you are over-catering to their desires and needs that isn’t good too. It doesn’t make any sense when you first think about it, but it really does. There is something here in this thought that I definitely want to revisit in 2018. —JM

1 Comment

Great point. As a veteran teacher, I can attest to the potential fallout from overdoing empathy. Some students try to manipulate and some parents take advantage. Still I do err on the side of caution. Students today have a lot of baggage. It’s preferable for me to go strong on empathy and ease off before the unwanted side effects, generally speaking.
Throughout each day, there are numerous opportunities to demonstrate and, hopefully model empathy and compassion.
Over 25 years ago, our principal told us, “You can’t assume that children are being taught manners at home.” It’s surely the same with empathy.