Excel At Life--Dedicated to the Pursuit of Excellence in Life, Relationships, Sports and Career
CBT Jealousy Depression Relationships Conflict Self-efficacy Happiness Goal-setting Motivation Wellness Sport Psych

Popular Articles

Crazy-Makers: Dealing with Passive-Aggressive People

Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

When You Have Been Betrayed

Struggling to Forgive: An Inability to Grieve

Happy Habits: 50 Suggestions

The Secret of Happiness: Let It Find You (But Make the Effort)

Excellence vs. Perfection

Depression is Not Sadness

20 Steps to Better Self-Esteem

7 Rules and 8 Methods for Responding to Passive-aggressive People

What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage

Happiness is An Attitude

Guide to How to Set Achieveable Goals

Catastrophe? Or Inconvenience?

Popular Audios

Panic Assistance

Motivational Audios

Mindfulness Training

Rational Thinking

Relaxation for Children

Loving Kindness Meditation

Self-Esteem Exercise

Lies You Were Told

Choosing Happiness

Audio Version of Article: Crazy-Makers: Passive-Aggressive People

Audio Version of Article: Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

Audio Version of Article: Happiness Is An Attitude

All Audio Articles

PsychNotes Index

More PsychNotes: Happiness and Well-being

April 28, 2017       

Compassion, Not Pity
by Monica A. Frank, PhD

I never pity anyone because I believe everyone is capable of great strength.
I never pity anyone because I believe everyone is capable of great strength.

As a psychologist it is my job to help people find that strength. It is not my job to protect them from life's adversities. If I feel sorry for my clients it implies that I don't believe they are capable which only affirms their fear.

As a parent it is my duty to help my child find that strength. If I overprotect my child and don't allow him to navigate the rough waters of life, I essentially don't allow him to find the strength and capability within himself.

As a human being it is my responsibility to help others find their strength. It is not my responsibility to take care of others but to assist them in discovering their ability to care for themselves to the degree they are capable.

It is compassion that helps me fulfill these obligations. But compassion is harder than pity. It requires the ability to tolerate discomfort. It requires strength to not only know what is changeable but to accept when it is not.

Compassion allows me to support but not take control because I care not only about the present but also about the future. It allows me to teach instead of solving.

Compassion allows me to listen and console but not commiserate in the futility of the situation. I know a person needs to be fully heard before they can move forward.

Compassion allows me to understand and feel the depth of others' despair without accepting the hopelessness. When people feel understood, they can begin to look at possibilities.

Compassion allows me to be an agent of change.

Questions and Comments

All comments and questions require approval so you may not see your submission immediately.

Kindle Books by
Dr. Monica Frank

Recent Articles

Analyzing Your Moods, Symptoms, and Events with Excel At Life's Mood Log

Why You Get Anxious When You Don't Want To

Why People Feel Grief at the Loss of an Abusive Spouse or Parent

“Are You Depressed?”: Understanding Diagnosis and Treatment

15 Coping Statements for Panic and Anxiety

Beyond Tolerating Emotions: Becoming Comfortable with Discomfort

Emotion Training: What is it and How Does it Work?

How You Can Be More Resistant to Workplace Bullying

Are You Passive Aggressive and Want to Change?

When Your Loved One Refuses Help

Newest Audios

Building Blocks Emotion Training

Hot Springs Relaxation

5 Methods to Managing Anger

Panic Assistance While Driving

Autogenic Relaxation Training

Rainbow Sandbox Mindfulness

Mindfulness Training