An Empathy Circle is a structured dialogue process that effectively supports meaningful and constructive dialogue. The basic process can be fairly easily learned in about 15 minutes and it is a lifelong practice to deepen. An Empathy Circle increases mutual understanding and connection by ensuring that each person feels fully heard to their satisfaction. The practice is the most effective gateway practice for learning, practicing and deepening listening and empathy skills, as well as, nurturing an empathic way of being.
An Empathy Circle is a structured dialogue process based on mutual active listening. The process increases constructive dialogue and mutual understanding by ensuring that each person feels fully heard to their satisfaction.
The circle takes different forms. In the Empathy Cafe, we invite anyone that would like to attend, 10 to 20+ participants. After an initial introduction, we divide into Empathy Circles of 4 to 5 participants, each with a facilitator.
In some empathy circles we typically have two participants from the political left and two from the right and a facilitator and co-facilitator.
1. Community Building: For nurturing connection, trust building, mutual understanding.
2. Effective Working: Creating a collaborative and constructive work environment. Like Dynamic Facilitation (aka, Empathic Inquiry) creates.
3. Personal Support: Getting deeper emotional support for personal issues. Support for feelings of alienation, depression, grief, anxiety, fear, stress, etc
4. Democracy Building: Is foundational for people to relate with each other for deep democracy to flourish.
5. Conflict Resolution: That is what the above Empathy Cafe is for, on conflict.
6. Empathic Direct Action (EDA): A new form of Non-Violent Direct Action (NVDA). We will be holding an Empathy Cafe on this shortly.
7. Empathic Design (aka Human Centered Design). For anything that is designed, the designers need to be aware of the felt experience and impact their designs will have on people.
The website has several videos on "how to", here is a link to one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyKW7Jebgck
Welcome to this introductory training on how to facilitate an Empathy Circle. The Empathy Circle is the most effective foundation and gateway practice for learning, practicing and deepening listening and empathy skills, as well as, nurturing an empathic way of being. Visit EmpathyCircle.com for more about the practice.
This website and curriculum will guide you through the process of signing up for the training and what to expect in each of the training Sessions. It has reference links to the material and the exercises we cover. Module 1 training consists of 5 Sessions of 2.5 hours each. We will meet once a week.
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