How to incorporate more empathy into your everyday life

Here are some tips and tricks to give yourself compassion and remind you that you are human! Not every day is easy, but we are here to help.

1. Stop measuring yourself against your pre-pandemic standards

To perform well, we need to include rest. Sitting at a desk all day might feel productive, but the longer you sit, the more your creativity, energy, mood and productivity plummets.

Give yourself permission to take lots of breaks because it’s an efficient way of working anyway. Focus on doing short bursts of deliberate focused work away from distractions and you might just find that you get a lot more done doing less anyway.

Try this: Take a few minutes to focus on your breath. This mindfulness breathing activity will help hone your attention into the present moment to help you keep your focus. What’s more mindfulness can help combat screen fatigue.

Mindfulness helps restore energy levels and builds stamina. Remember, if you’re having lots of back-to-back meetings, just take several minutes to do a few rounds of belly breathing and support your attention span.

2. How are you really feeling? ‘Name it to tame it.’

Being honest about how you are feeling is a key to understanding what you can achieve at the moment, and what you need to do to boost your wellbeing.  Naming our emotions is good for us, as Tony Schwartz writes, “naming our emotions tends to diffuse their charge and lessen the burden they create”.

Psychologists use the phrase “name it to tame it” to highlight the point, because by naming them we can create separation between ourselves and our emotions.

TIP: Slowing our breathing (mindfulness breathing) allows us to tame our emotions, it slows our thinking to create space between our thoughts, our emotions and our responses.

Try this: Be kind to you! People with higher levels of ‘self-compassion’ react to adverse events with better emotional regulation. Self-compassion is essentially responding to yourself with the same kindness you would give to a friend. Learn how to cultivate self-compassion here.

3. Routines anchor you

It’s been suggested, that during times of stress, hanging on to routines e.g., healthy eating, getting enough sleep, doing household chores – helps us psychologically adapt.

To combat this, routines help us with the growth of other good habits which will boost our wellbeing. Routines create an anchor and help us move more purposely into the day.

TIP: Think about you at your best:

  • What routines and habits help you to be at your best?
  • What is one thing can you do in the morning, that will set up your day well?
  • How can you structure your day to include some these routines and give yourself the best chance to feel fulfilled and purposeful?

4. If you can’t do what you want, do what you can

This means proactively taking the time to make life better for themselves despite their mental state.

For example, one study found that people with good wellbeing reported that the things that helped them cope included:

  • Having more time with family or people they live with
  • Having more time for themselves to rest
  • Getting projects done around the house
  • Spending time in the outdoors in nature


In other words, despite the disruptions, they were still actively involved with people and life.

TIP: Think of ways to connect with the people you live with. Find things you can do outdoors, pick a little project at home to work on.

Give yourself permission “to do nothing” for a designated short period of time, but not a long time, because as noted with Tip # 1 – understanding the limits on yourself right now, is very important.

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