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Empathy

4 Ways Being a Writer Teaches You to be a Better Person

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I used to say, “I fooled people into thinking I was nice.” I’m not a classically “nice” person. I’m blunt, I’m impatient, I’m selfish and I’m judgmental. In short, I’m very, very human. I consider myself tremendously blessed to be a writer. Why? Because every day I spend writing is day I spend learning to be a better human. I can look around now, after years of writing, and realize—with more than bit of shock—that I’m really not fooling people anymore. The traits I used to pretend to have are now ones that come—more and more—with habitual ease, and all because the habits and mindsets I’ve developed in an effort to improving my writing have in turn improved all other…

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Is it time to petition Facebook for an “Empathize” button?

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How often do we see friends posting Facebook status updates about bad days at work, sleepless nights, or frustrating interactions with strangers? Or something much worse? How many of us have hit the “Like” button in response, looking for a way to acknowledge suffering, knowing that “Like” is absolutely not the emotion we’d want to convey? Facebook users have long cried out for a “Dislike” button, but the company refuses to provide it. According to Facebook product engineer Bob Baldwin, “Actions on Facebook tend to focus on positive social interactions.” Fair enough. Maybe it’s time, then, to petition the company for an “Empathize” button. This is what we mean, isn’t it, when we hit that button? “I feel your pain,” we…

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