World renowned neurosurgeon James Doty’s most recent discoveries on combating depression, anxiety, addiction and loneliness among other supporting scientific evidence has revealed 1 critical attribute in order to find success and fulfilment in life.. Compassion.
But What Exactly Is Compassion?
Well as James Doty explains in his Huffington Post column;
“Compassion is the recognition of another’s suffering and a desire to alleviate that suffering. Often brushed off as a hippy dippy religious term irrelevant in modern society, rigorous empirical data supports the view of all major world religions: compassion is good.”
Ok, but what benefits can be gained from compassion? Well, A 2010 study from the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology indicates that participants who showed more compassion also showed lower blood pressure, heart rate, and levels of cortisol in comparison to less compassionate counterparts. These factors would contribute to less stress, greater recovery from disease, more energy, increased happiness and increased lifespan we can therefore conclude practicing compassion is sure to improve your life quality.
Dalai Lama & Jack Ma Agree
Compassion aligns with the philosophy for the increasingly popular and powerful practice of Servant Leadership
“The servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible”
Which unlocks purpose and self belief in those being led. Leading to much higher performance values. Self Made multi billionaire Jack Ma founder of Alibaba, is a fervent practicer of servant leadership and owes the meteoric rise of his company to said practice. Servant leadership has a long history and has been mentioned in many sacred texts including the Tao Te Ching attributed to Lao Tzu, which states
“The highest type of ruler is one of whose existence the people are barely aware. Then comes one whom they love and praise. Next comes one whom they fear. Next comes one whom they despise and defy. When you are lacking in faith, Others will be unfaithful to you.”
Unsurprisingly the compassionate approach has many advocates His Holiness the Dalai Lama recently offered this clever remark on compassion;
“If we say, ‘oh, the practice of compassion is something holy,’ nobody will listen. If we say, ‘warm-heartedness really reduces your blood pressure, your anxiety, your stress and improves your health,’ then people pay attention.”
CEO Of LinkedIn Offers Insight
Jeff Weiner CEO of LinkedIn weighed in with his opinion on compassion when he tweeted;
Big misconception about managing compassionately is that it’s a “soft” skill. Most compassionate people I know are typically the strongest.
— Jeff Weiner (@jeffweiner) October 6, 2017
He went on to summarise compassion expertly in his LinkedIn plus blog;
“As the Dalai Lama explains, if you are walking along a trail and come along a person who is being crushed by a boulder, an empathetic reaction would result in you feeling the same sense of crushing suffocation and render you unable to help. The compassionate reaction would put you in the sufferer’s shoes, thinking this person must be experiencing horrible pain so you’re going to do everything in your power to remove the boulder and alleviate their suffering. Put another way, compassion is a more objective form of empathy. This idea of seeing things clearly through another person’s perspective can be invaluable when it comes to relating with others, particularly in tense work situations.”
It is better to go through the world as a compassionate person, with the ability to help others that are suffering without being crippled by their weight. Therefore, it is better to lead with compassion, not empathy. So whether you are wanting success in your business or personal life, we can see the power of compassion and it’s many benefits. If everyone on Earth practised compassion what a different world we would live in. What are your thoughts on compassion?