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Shame Maker, Empathy Killer - (Comparative Suffering)

Updated: Jul 12, 2023


"I mustn't moan when ................. has it so much worse off" Heard this before?


Let me start off by saying that care and Empathy for others is a GREAT thing! It moves us to acts of huge compassion.

However 'Comparative Suffering', a term coined by Brene Brown is not the same thing, let me tell you why.


Comparative suffering is, as it sounds, the comparing of suffering, and is all about competition and conformity. A mental and emotional jostling for position.


Firstly Shame is triggered with all the assessment, leading to "not good enough" messages, or in this case "I don't reach the appropriate levels of suffering for empathy". Sounds crazy right?!


The second thing that happens is that we don't give ourselves any empathy because "others deserve empathy more". Sounds even crazier ..... we somehow believe that empathy is finite. BUT what's amazing is that EMPATHY CREATES MORE EMPATHY (Brene Brown) AND cannot coexist with SHAME. So we can show ourselves empathy/compassion, and we have more empathy/compassion to give others.


Next time you catch yourself playing the Comparative Suffering game ....... tell those negative voices to do one.....Choose self compassion/empathy, and you will have heaps to share around.

Isn't that something to CELEBRATE? Give it a go.



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