Sympathy VS Empathy
Apart from the difference in spellings, sympathy and empathy differ in their basic concept. We all have faced a moment when someone shares their worries with us and we are not sure how to react…
A rather intuitive reaction is to feel bad for the person, being sorry for their troubles. This would be sympathy. It generates sensitivity and pity for the sufferer; “I feel for you”.
On a slightly higher frequency is empathy. This is when you understand the other person’s feelings from their perspective. As cliched as it may sound, it is about walking in their shoes (even if they don’t fit). It builds emotional bonding and compassion; “I understand how you must be feeling”.