Empathetic Listening in Coaching

November 17, 2015

By Joyce Odidison

November 17, 2015

By Joyce Odidison

empatheticThere is something about empathy that improves mental wellness and increases our resilience. Have you ever been……


Have you ever been upset, hurt or distraught and someone came along and shared your burden? You no longer felt alone or like the walls were closing in around you, you felt hopeful again and able to think of possibilities. You felt supported, cared for and encouraged.

There’s something to say for the term “misery likes company”. In essence humans like to share their emotions, Neuroscience reminds us that we have mirroring neurons that allow us to mirror others feelings. We are created with all the tools necessary to connect with others, as such we like sharing our emotions, elation, joy, love and even the unpleasant feelings like pain, grief and sorrow.

I will be teaching a course tonight on empathetic listening in coaching and I’m keenly looking forward to working with the coaches to enhance all our abilities to listen empathetically to our clients. I love teaching this course as it allows us to explore elements of empathetic listening and practice techniques to increase our empathetic listening skills.

Unlike sympathy where we mirror the person’s emotions, empathy shows we care and we understand. It shows we are willing to support and encourage the other person through their situation. Empathy doesn’t mean we take their issue away, solve their problem or take their pain away. It means we listen with care and deep concern for what they are going through and that we are willing to stand by them as they face this particular challenge.

I personally believe that empathetic listening improves our mental wellness and allows us to cope better with the stresses of our lives. It allows us to grow mental and emotional toughness so we can be resilient.

As coaches we also get to support our clients as they think of ways to cope, move past or learn from their situation. They coaching relationship allows for powerful and empathetic listening.

How do you feel when others listen to you with empathy?

To your wellness,


Joyce Odidison

Joyce Odidison is a Conflict Analyst Coach, who is the founder of Interpersonal Wellness Services Inc. & Coaching Institute. She consults, teaches and coaches with mid-career professionals and organizations to improve performance, skills, competencies, and workplace wellness. She can be reached at www.interpersonalwellness.comor by phone at: 1 877 999-9591.

About the author

Joyce Odidison is a Conflict Analyst, Speaker, Author, thought leader, and the world’s leading expert on the Wellness Competency Alignment concept to improve and measure wellness behaviours in organizations. Joyce is President & CEO of Interpersonal Wellness Services Inc. for over 25. She is Founder of the Global Workplace Wellness Summit and What’s Happening at Work podcast. Joyce is the author of six books. She has Founded and leads Coach Velocity School of Coaching, an approved program by the International Coach Federation (ICF). She is the Publisher of Faces of Workplace Wellness Magazine. Joyce is a C-Suite level workplace wellness expert and corporate trainer driving inclusive workplace wellness strategies for organizations globally. She can be reached at phone 1 877 999-9591 www.interpersonalwellness.com

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