While there are a lot of things I think this world could benefit from right now, I do wish I had the authority to prescribe just one: Empathy.
Self-defined as the ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes, empathy is an emotion so many fail to partake in, despite having the innate capacity to do so. After all, it’s so much easier to stomp our feet and tell someone they don’t understand our thoughts/feelings/existence, rather than take the time to wonder if they actually could.
For an example: I am currently in my mid-thirties. The vast majority of my friends are married, and many of them have been blessed with beautiful children. I am, nor have, neither. And therefore, I am told on a rather regularly and quite annoyingly basis that I just don’t get what it’s like to walk their walk.
Now, the fact that I cannot understand what it’s like to have a child is just that – fact. I have never carried life inside me for 9 months only to give excruciating birth to it, to then be presented with the gift of watching it grow. But I have launched and own my own business, one that feels like a very extension of my soul. Rolling your eyes at my comparison? Great. You’re only fueling my point, so hear me out.
For me, owning a business feels like I am constantly walking around with my heart and every vital organ strapped on the outside of my body. It takes a mix of vulnerability and courage I never knew existed before. It keeps me up most every night and forces me to rise from a restless sleep long before the sun is even scheduled to come up. Hot meals and showers are not daily occurrences but luxuries. I never know what tomorrow will bring and often find myself holding my breath as a result.
Yet I wouldn’t trade my life for anything. Just like I never would be so quick as to tell someone they don’t understand my grind. Because while I have and will always sacrifice all I have ever known for my business, I know that countless others are out there doing the same via the role they have chosen to play in their lives.
Because I believe that, as humans, we all share experiences. Even if we how we experience them – on the surface – seems like its worlds apart.
This is why I personally cannot understand why so many choose to view their thoughts/feelings/existence as solitary. It is it because it makes us feel special? Creates a crowd where you’re either in or your out?
Is there a type of superiority derived from believing we live a path different from everyone else?
The way I see it you can choose to stand alone or stand together. Unite over feelings as opposed to using them as a divide. At the end of the day, there is no one other than ourselves responsible for our own accord.
This is why I will always listen. And will strive to find the common thread. Because I believe, despite the words we use, that we’re all speaking the same language. And that we are all so very, incredibly desperate to be heard.