You can only understand people if you feel them in yourself. Come On Join The Joy Ride. 

You know “Lal Bus”, aka Red Bus, is the city bus and if you are in India you can certainly encounter them in full spirit loaded and running the city roads. These city buses run across pan India and are a major convenient & common mode of commute. For common people and the youths staying away from their home city buses are the lifeline. 

Why I am sharing with you about the buses that are the most common mode of commute is because often here on public transportation, you see things that no one should have ever seen. And something exactly happened to me. 

I am sitting in the back seat of my car scrolling through news headlines and the driver is over the wheel. What’s drifting away my attention is heavy traffic honking noises and the slowing pace. I am taken aback by so many sudden breaks to wonder: why is the traffic so still, even the man on the bicycle can overtake? 

The most frustrating part was the constant run of the Red-Bus ahead of us. Sometimes parallelly beside or sometimes taking over that we weren’t able to cut through a traffic jam. I did try to pay no attention and get back to my reading, but the more I tried, the more difficult it was to keep my mind still.  

Our driver is an excellent person over the wheel, the construction of the metro track and the flyover parallel across this patch of the lane has reduced the road run space. But then this is nothing new, it’s the narrative of each day. What’s going on is the case that’s making me curious. Finally what I understand is, the Red Bus ahead of me is causing a bottleneck, for it’s frequently stopping.  

From extreme right to doling left picking up & dropping passengers, disrupting traffic & flow. But why? Maybe, the driver stops to drop off the passengers who perhaps have a request to stop the bus even though the point is not a defined bus stop. Picking up the passengers at bay stand off road waving hands urging them to stop. Soon I noticed a small feeble figure approaching running after stretching her hand for the bus driver to see & to stop so she could board.

Empathy, Is The Bus To The Journey Called Life!
Empathy, Is The Bus To The Journey Called Life!

It took no time to understand the bus driver is well aware of the pattern and needs of his passengers and out of not just dutifulness but more empathy is working to make the journey easier for his customers. Perhaps he’s not even paid extra or receives any incentives for being kind, whereas complaining seems more complimentary than the way he is causing trouble for the people in traffic. 

Buses are the glue of daily life. When it goes well, we don’t notice, when it goes wrong, it drains energy & colours negativity making us angry. But if you see closely, there is so much they carry… Life & Empathy. The local bus is majorly a mode of commute and lifeline for many, as this thought kicked in frustration vanished away replacing it with patience. 

A deep sense of humility surfaced, truly how considerate the driver is, he is enjoying his job extending empathy & compassion, though no incentives he might be seeking. India as a society is literally not just running after the bus to make a day but in metaphor, it’s after bread and butter running to place food on the table at night.

Isn’t it true that in the corporate world we enroll for empathy, team building, and soft skill sessions? All to achieve customer satisfaction, and to sell the product better for retention. Indian streets and billions of common people are living with compassion and understanding. People are connected by living and breathing empathy unconsciously out of no expectancy, motivation, or motives. Mass consciousness weaves the fabric of the nation and that is what people breathe…Empathy. The service and caring mentality, One Love One World. 

By definition, empathy is the ability to perceive and relate to the thoughts, emotions, and experiences of others. Those high with empathy are skilled at comprehending the situation of the other much more closely. At the workplace simply empathy means a healthy interpersonal environment. Where people can relate better, trust, and support each other better. All that can enhance the relationship, work performance, productivity, and pull in support when necessary. 

The Red Bus Driver was well in understanding the needs of the passengers, and their situation and was acting in his best capacity to deliver the service. What blocks empathy from flowing freely in our huge glass setups that need training after training and how much we can achieve? How often do we get success or fail to build resilient positive productive and safe environments? 

When a person is high on empathy they often judge less and are more understanding. But in reality, honking at the back of the head is enough to lose all coolness. No need to have a great reason, just step out of your home and drive into the traffic soon it works as stimuli that unleash your demons soon you lose your mind. 

Empathy is holding on to your peace of mind, and your attitude of being able to understand others’ needs at that same time. Understanding their reason, their need. Noting the urgency and intensity of the problem or performance to take the mark of it. Building a strategy, a coping mechanism, and other responses that let you move forwards with your work while you extend support to others creates a performing environment. 

The study of recent times reveals that empathy is primitive, it’s an innate attribute of the human mind. Emotional cognition care, desire to share, and ability to understand others’ emotions are innate. Isn’t it beguiling that the very precious quality of being human that could brighten the environment is an ability, a science to change people’s lives? 

As we grow in age, contrary caring and sharing get buried in routine and living. Targets, competition, and race to win chase goals nay let people to think for others. Even when their ways become hurtful to others they fail to notice, being sensitive is out of practice. Now we need to prepare & train to care for small little things for the people surrounding all to bring that human touch into our lives. 

The rush of life covers a layer of busyness over the minds that people need to dust up in real-life putting people through high-profile sophisticated seminars and training. Ever wonder why empathy building is now the subject of most importance? Or, if I may ask, What are the indicators that are signs of lacking empathy that need notice and why? 

People with a lack of empathy excessively criticize others for experiencing or expressing emotions in certain scenarios. Someone with a lack of empathy may also blame the person for what they experience. 

Psychology suggests apathetic behaviors are correlated with self-esteem, interpersonal relationships, and self-efficacy. The multiple regression analysis research on empathy suggests that variance in empathy is attributable to gender, major satisfaction, self-esteem, self-efficacy, and interpersonal relationships.

Thinking critically and being judgmental, calling other people too sensitive, responding in inappropriate ways, having trouble understanding how the behaviour affects others, and having difficulty maintaining relationships is the problem many face. 

What causes a person to lack empathy?

Research reveals that empathy is innate with growth and development it needs building and is infectious in the environment. As early as the age of five to seven the response and interaction with parents, teachers, peers, society, and culture affect its development. How people feel about kindness, empathy, compassion, and helping behaviours is empathy level. 

Besides, some conditions may play a role in a lack of empathy like narcissistic personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder, and borderline personality disorder. The more the people radiate love, compassion, peace, harmony and tranquility, the more they contribution towards the collective consciousness that knits the fabric of a harmonious world.  

Empathy is seeing with the eyes of another, listening with the ears of another and feeling with the heart of another.” – Alfred Adler 

Humans are the supreme creator and what makes us supreme is our intelligence, the ability of our mind to learn, unlearn and relearn things. Cognitive ability is perhaps the said magic, your mind is magic. 

Psychologists Daniel Goleman and Paul Ekman broke down the concept of empathy into the following three categories: Cognitive, Emotional, and Compassionate. This refers to the ability to comprehend what a person might feel or think and it is a channel of information. 

How to improve your empathy? 

Challenge yourself by undertaking experiences that push you outside your comfort zone. 

Get out of your usual environment. 

 Get feedback.

Explore the heart, not just the head

Examine your biases. 

Cultivate your sense of curiosity. 

Ask better questions.

Be hungry. Hungry for learning, to practice, to share, to be curious. Ask questions, a lot of them, and the right questions will lead you in search of answers that are perhaps the need of most employers. Answers lead to understanding the need and empathy works. 

How do you develop empathy at work?

Involve Employees In Decision-Making.

Build Customized Plans For All Employees. 

Show Genuine Interest In Their Goals And Interests. 

Share Your Failings And Feelings.

Have An Open-Door Policy. 

Communicate Effectively And Often. 

Combine Empathy With Compassion.

Listen With An Open Mind.

“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from his angle as well as your own” Henry Ford.

And you don’t have to go to a business school to learn empathy, you can witness it on the street. Simple streets where one can witness how people are considerate of others and their needs even to the strangers… Over the highway a speeding car flashlight to signal the following behind that ahead is danger… in a grocery store with a full cart when you mind not and allow someone behind with fewer items to get the bill first. Remember how the rush for necessary items out of stock caused the uproar during the COVID crisis? We just wish people to be a little kinder and take only what they need?

Caring for others is the system of world that let flow in swift all harmony & peace. An environment that proposes well-being to flourish, personally or professionally. Not just life but this is how the universe works on the principle of empathy. It’s understanding how others feel and being compassionate toward them. It happens when two parts of the brain work together.