Some people spend their time doing for others in every community in the land in the land. Some make their profession, as in healthcare. Others do it as teachers and educators. Still, others do it for their churches. They live in a spirit of grace. Their spirit moves them to act with compassion toward others.
Compassion, Evan Harrel, cofounder of the Center for Compassionate Leadership, told me in an interview, “is the awareness of the suffering of others, coupled with the desire to help relieve that suffering.” As Harrel and founder, Laura Berland, believe, compassion requires more than sympathy. It requires action. “Compassionate leadership is bringing that compassion to the teams you work with” so that you “create cultures of compassion that help remove the causes of suffering.”
“If we have no peace,” Mother Theresa once said, “it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” Disagreements divide us. Compassion strengthens the bonds between us. However, saying so does not make it so. It is hard, very hard to abide others who seek to profit by dividing us. Compassion, therefore, has limits. Focus your energies on where you can make a positive difference. The way you listen to others is a window into your heart and can, in turn, open doors of understanding.
A benefit of compassion, as Berland and Harrell say, is transformation. Today’s world has been roiled by the tragedy of the pandemic, the complete upheaval of our way of life. As a result, people are rethinking who they are and what they want to do with their lives. Acting with a spirit of compassion is a means that can transform how we think of our world by acting with compassion one day, one community, one person at a time.
Acting with compassion
Compassion is grace in action. Consider the following:
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Communicate with an open mind and act with an open heart.
Operate with a mindset of abundance.
Meet others where they are, not where you’d like them to be.
Put others ahead of yourself.
Act for the good of the team.
Serve others as you would like to be served.
Stay back to see what else can be done for others.
Initiate action on behalf of others.
Open yourself to the goodness around you.
Need help? Seek it. You are not alone.
Note: You can find my interview with Laura Berland and Evan Harrel here.