Lynne Baab • Thursday February 29 2024
Imagine you and a friend are walking in your favorite park. Your friend is talking about a challenging situation at work. During the ten minutes they’re on that topic, your brain flits back and forth from their story to the bird you see flying by, your discomfort in your new walking shoes, your concern that it might start raining and you forgot your umbrella, and your own concerns about work. Oh, yes, the craft project you’re working on these days also comes to mind.
You might think something is wrong with you that you can’t stay focused on your friend’s story and...Read full article »
Lynne Baab • Tuesday February 20 2024
First and foremost, empathy requires that we pay attention to another person. Their facial expression and body language. Their tone of voice. The way they describe situations, actions, feelings, and responses. As I’m sure you know, this is much harder than it sounds.
Obstacles to paying attention are manifold. Some obstacles come from outside, such as background noise, chaotic environments, or planes flying overhead. Most obstacles come from within, from our own thoughts and feelings. I can list so many things that flit through my mind when I’m trying to listen empathetically: the ingredients I need for dinner, the mess in the...Read full article »
Lynne Baab • Wednesday February 14 2024
Identify with. Experience. Understand. Those are the verbs in the definition of empathy that I have been highlighting in recent blog posts.
“Empathy is the cognitive process of identifying with or vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. . . . When we empathize, we are attempting to understand and/or experience what another person understands and/or experiences.” —Verderber and Verderber, Inter-Act: Interpersonal Communication Concepts, Skills and Contexts
Today, I want to raise the possibility that the three verbs I have highlighted can be exercised without love and actually cause harm. Ideally, we hope that anyone who makes an effort to identify with,...Read full article »
Lynne Baab • Wednesday February 7 2024
Interest in empathy skyrocketed after the discovery of mirror neurons in the early 1990s. As I wrote two weeks ago, mirror neurons enable us to respond to and even experience the actions and emotions of others. The number of academic studies about empathy is astonishing. Empathy is studied in relation to just about any profession or life activity you can imagine.
I want to give you a sampling of the kinds of articles about empathy you’ll find online.
Here’s a quotation from a consulting firm specializing in negotiating skills: “Evidencing empathy leads to negotiation success.”
From an education center at U.C. Berkeley: “Students who...Read full article »
Lynne Baab • Friday August 11 2023By Lynne M. Baab
Lynne Baab • Sunday June 26 2022Making Space for a Continuing Conversation with the Living God
Lynne Baab • Saturday October 9 2021By Lynne M. Baab. Originally published in Christianity Today, July 8, 2021
Lynne M. Baab, Ph.D., is a teacher and writer. She has written numerous books, Bible study guides, and articles for magazines and journals. Lynne is passionate about prayer and other ways to draw near to God, and her writing conveys encouragement for readers to be their authentic selves before God. She encourages experimentation and lightness in Christians spiritual practices. Read more »
Lynne is pleased to announce the release of her book on grief and gratitude, designed to help people grieving from anything, including the pandemic, while also desiring to notice God's good gifts. Two Hands: Grief and Gratitude in the Christian Life is available in paperback, audiobook, and for kindle. Lynne's 2018 book is Nurturing Hope: Christian Pastoral Care for the Twenty-First Century, and her best-selling book is Sabbath-Keeping: Finding Freedom in the Rhythms of Rest (now available as an audiobook as well as paperback and kindle). You can see her many other book titles here, along with her Bible study guides.
Lynne recently spoke about bringing spiritual practices to life.
"Lynne's writing is beautiful. Her tone has such a note of hope and excitement about growth. It is gentle and affirming."
— a reader
"Dear Dr. Baab, You changed my life. It is only through God’s gift of the sabbath that I feel in my heart and soul that God loves me apart from anything I do."
— a reader of Sabbath Keeping
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