Hello friends!  How many of you like to cook!?

I made Blini (thin pancakes) for Valentine's Day brunch on Sunday - for the first time in a long while at my 18-year-old son's request.  He rarely ever requests anything. But whenever I make pancakes of any kind, I've learned that the first few generally don't turn as well as the later ones do -- after I've gotten in a flow and made any adjustments to temperature, etc.  I know not to sweat it.  Do you get perfect pancakes every time?  Ughh . . .Don't tell me . . . 

The Blini were a hit with strawberries and more! They are incredibly simple to make.  If I made them more frequently those first 2 or 3 might be just right, too!  But I don't. Still, I have improved a bit and the first ones were not so bad : ) 

So this is my first podcast and I recognize that the first 2 may not look/sound like the ones farther along . . . much like the first 2-3 Blini pancakes.  I hope you'll bear with me and recognize that the ingredients are still delish!  

This month I've focused on the first Guidepost on Legacy Lane, a guide I created with eight different guideposts to help us keep to our own personal path to living the legacy life.  The first guidepost is Self-Identity.  In Episode #3 which I will link here the topic is emotional self-awareness and how this self-awareness is necessary to improve the ability to empathize with others as well.  

Listen to Episode #3 here and follow Legacy Living Today on your favorite podcast player. 
You can also read the show notes below.  And please share your feedback! <3

Welcome to the Legacy Living Today podcast!   I'm Dawn and I am so excited to have you join me here today.  Together we can explore ways to intentionally choose to break free from the tyranny of the urgent and decide to live legacy every day -- one day at a time!

Emotional self-awareness drives empathy for others.  Whether in parenting or getting along with co-workers & a multitude of other relationships. If you're getting or giving the empathy advice you're not alone. "Just have empathy" can seem like a pat answer or even a shameful put-down when you've got a difficult situation or relationship issue.  

I don't know if you are railing against the  "you should have more empathy" mantra that's become so popular now or feeling shamed by it, (or posting it all over the place for others to see and magically solve all the relational problems of the world),  but today I'd like to take a different perspective.  

Let's explore -- What if empathy for others does not begin with understanding them, but with understanding yourself.

Could understanding ourselves help us have more empathy for others?

And in that same vein, as a parent of children with developmental mental-emotional delays I could ask a related question:  Could my child's lack of understanding their own emotional reactions hinder his ability to show empathy for others?

Ahh...it's getting a little more complex here.  
But let's simplify.  
Let's focus just on personal emotional understanding & awareness.  This is a biggie!

If I'm to have empathy for instance for my child who is "acting out" as we say, I need to have some understanding of what is pushing that behavior.  That doesn't mean I agree with or approve of the behavior but we're talking about the child behind the behavior here.  

To have some degree of understanding I'll need to relate in some manner.  Pulling from my own life experiences I can understand sadness, anger, frustration, surprise . . . even contempt, embarrassment, shame...excitement, fear, confusion & others.  

But if my only emotional reference is  Sad, Mad & Glad -- then I am not going to have the ability to understand my own emotional states and reactions nor anyone else's to the degree necessary to be able to drum up much empathy for anyone.  

As a parent, I'm certainly not going to be able to help teach these to my child who already struggles in this area of emotional awareness if sad, mad & glad or happy is all I have to reference.

So what do you think,  can spending time on becoming self-aware of your own emotional states, reactions, and how that impacts you, in turn, help you become a more empathetic person and further, help you help your child or others?  

Take a guess, how many basic emotions do you think there are?  three, five, 10?  Of course, it depends on who you ask & I'm no expert.  It can help to boil things down to just a handful in some cases, but when we're talking about empathy and understanding at a more individual level it can help to further define what's going on.  

What number did you say?... I'm linking an article I saw with 27 BASIC EMOTIONS! Not 3, 5 . . . 27!!
So this isn't even an exhaustive list!  
Look in the podcast description for this resource (I didn't write it) & then for fun, see if you can further narrow down your own emotions in the coming week and see how you do.  Then see if you can begin to notice any of them in others.  Your spouse, child, co-worker, or boss.  You may want to share the list and get your family to do the activity with you.  Let's begin to build a legacy of empathy today, by getting to know ourselves better.

Leave me a message if this week's topic resonates with you.  I'd be delighted to hear from you!


**Thanks for listening to this episode of Legacy Living Today. Legacy Living Today is a new podcast for women like you with a vision and desire to make a long-lasting impact with your most valuable asset -- your one precious life-- to explore together how we can live legacy — one day at a time.

If you enjoyed this podcast and are interested in not only becoming more self-aware of your emotions at a deeper level but want some practical emotional support while you're doing all this self-work, let me know and I can get you some information on our essential oils that are well-known tools for emotional support.  



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