What really IS compassion?

What really IS compassion?

“The definition of compassion is the ability to understand the emotional state of another person or oneself. Often confused with empathy, compassion has the added element of having a desire to alleviate or reduce the suffering of another.” (fromPsychology Today website)

Many of the clients I work with are empathetic people who are sensitive to others’ energy and needs, so to retain my client’s strength and empowerment through avoiding over-serving others in their lives, my focus around teaching compassion is to define compassion as ‘understanding’.

If you’ve been experiencing negative relationships, jam-packed with drama, try to take a step back and explore having some compassion for the other person as this process will empower you beyond measure. It is when you move from shock, pain, or anger into cutting the cord that enables them to have power over you, or hurt you.

The imbalance in the relationship is like metaphoric tug of war. It is like a rope is being held by each of you and the tug of war is the drama/ push-pull relationship. As you let go of your end by no longer engaging in the drama, the battle is over, and you move powerfully into the place of freedom – where you observe them, not engaging, understanding their different view, but are not affected by their behaviour. Understanding equals compassion, but don’t fall into the trap of being the rescuer.


By Leigh White, Transformational Coach