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Losing a loving parent is considered one of life's greatest heartbreaks. It is even more challenging when that death is connected to a holiday that celebrates the gift of a good father. I was only 19 when my father died 48 years ago.
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We are presented opportunities everyday to make a difference in the lives of those around us, near or far, through our actions, time, or money. Whether we embrace that opportunity is up to us and, evidently, even the smallest of gestures or actions can veritably snowball into lasting results.
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It seems that people have become more and more alienated lately. More often than not, our mode of interaction is transactional, as opposed to empathetic. "Empathetic" and "transactional" are two of the ways that people behave with one-another, and they're quite the opposite.
Joshua M. Ferguson.
In 2016, as our children watched, bullying became legitimate. What we accept without dissent, what we allow to be framed as normal, alters according to our level of desensitization. We have become increasingly desensitized to bullying behaviour.
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We need each other. We need these connections to survive and we need to talk about mental illness to share light and hope. We need to stop stigmatizing mental illness. We need to survive mental illness. You need to survive it. You have to keep moving. Keep fighting. Keep dreaming.
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How many times have we wondered exactly how to parent our kids when our kids throw us a curve or -- as we found out recently -- world events upend our sensibilities? Perhaps surprising is that how we parent has several underpinnings that never change, no matter what the circumstance
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Parents model behaviour to their children, and children watch very closely. My dad taught me not to give money on the street, but if someone asked, we should treat them with complete, sincere dignity and take the time to offer them whatever it is they need. It can be inconvenient -- taking a stranger out for lunch and hearing their story, spending an extra 5 minutes buying someone groceries, giving someone our own mittens in the dead of winter, or perhaps giving someone a ride that is out of our way.
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One of the most common questions that I get asked by youth, parents, teachers and people all over my community is "I have a friend or a family member is suffering or I think there is something wrong but I don't know what to do or how to help." And while we aren't doctors, clinical experts or parents there are things that we as individuals can do that can help. We can most definitely be empathetic to those that may be suffering or we may be worried about.
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According to a 2016 GE Healthcare study, 81 per cent of patients are unsatisfied with their health care experience. While that is an American statistic, Canadian data show that we have work to do here...
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Parents, grandparents, caregivers take heed. As you are stowing the markers, pens and paper in your child's backpack for the start of a new school year be sure to throw in a hefty supply of resilience. It is the most important school supply any child needs in today's world.
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My family and I essentially lived at the Grand River Hospital's ICU the last two weeks. We were there to give comfort to my mom as she fought a valiant but losing battle with cancer. As odd as this may sound, they were two of the most inspiring weeks of our lives.
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You're processing the world around you, minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day. And as your mom, I'm doing my best to show you (and remind myself each day) how to bring light into this world each of those days. In the grocery store, at the park, in the classroom. We're in this together. We'll learn together. We'll fall together. We'll get up together.
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Let kids fail young -- while they are still in their beta phase, adaptable and resilient. Let them struggle with a math problem. Let them audition for the lead role when you know they're likely to be cast as an understudy. Let them make mistakes that will build self-care and even empathy.
Sometimes things suck. Please don't force yourself to think positively about it. Feel what you feel. Give yourself space. Embrace vulnerability with people you trust (or in your journal), and enjoy the natural sun after the storm.
The ability to imagine what another person would think or feel is referred to as the theory of mind. It is this that helps us realize that another person's mind is distinct from our own. When six-year olds point out physical flaws they are simply responding to their own curiosity. They have no idea that this might hurt people. To realize the impact of these observations would require the ability to be in someone else's head.
A few years ago I decided to embark on a backpacking trip across Europe for two months. Towards the end of my travels, I found myself at the Sisteen Chapel in Rome, Italy. As I was standing there, enchanted by this insanely crazy masterpiece, I felt a soft whisper perk the tiny hairs on the back of my neck.
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From a very young age, my parents taught my siblings and I, through instruction and example, that doing even a little can lead to a lot. But what initially felt like a pointless, mind-numbing activity became a valuable exercise in developing understanding and empathy.
Canadian Olympian and relationship guru Brianne Theisen-Eaton offers three tips for a healthy relationship.
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This was one of the anticipated birthdays you were looking forward to other than 16 where you could finally learn to drive. But sadly, it was not a milestone you would ever reach. I often wonder what you would be like as an adult in our ever changing world.= What would the future hold if you hadn't had that awful Thanksgiving weekend and that horrible experience you came home to tell me about. If you had been able to sleep better that weekend. If others had just left you alone.
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Alzheimer's caregivers are amazingly successful at juggling all of the things necessary to meet the needs of their loved one, but each day they're simultaneously learning how to juggle the many emotions they experience. Anger, guilt, fear and frustration are just a few of the complex emotional balls they are trying so hard to keep in the air.
Throughout my career I worked for some pretty awful companies. They were awful mostly because a couple of key people at the top were successful in creating a toxic work culture. Exclusion, discrimination, and bullying were the daily norm.
As a business writer, people often ask me what books they should read to become better leaders. For years, my answer has been the same: read good fiction. If you want to learn how people think and behave, read a novel, a short story, or a play. Think of how effective we could be as leaders if we used our understanding of people to better empathize with our employees, clients, and boards.
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The Internet is without a doubt one of the greatest innovations of our time. It, along with social media, has allowed us to connect with loved ones and like-minded people. However, it has also created a climate where humiliation, trolling, and cyberbullying are as easy as standing on a virtual soap-box and snidely tapping a few keystrokes for the world to see. We each need to play our part in acting with empathy and compassion.
While for many the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, for others, they are dreading the oncoming festivities because they may mark the 1st, 5th or 50th season without a loved one. No matter what denomination they are or what holiday they celebrate, there is one common factor that binds all of them together: someone they loved is gone.
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Mother Nature has been the most powerful healing source in my life, and in this article I am inspired to share my profound connections with Her and part of my healing journey. To begin, it's a miracle...
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Last spring, I joined my daughter Journey's fifth grade class as a volunteer on her field trip. I had the pleasure of watching a classmate approach Journey who was taking photos of a museum exhibit. The classmate suggested she turn off the camera flash; he was concerned that it could trigger one of her seizures. I was overcome with pride and appreciation for the caring, supportive community we have created in partnership with the school administration.
Truth is, that wasn't normal by any means. As a society, our relationship with homeless people is simple; either you drop a coin or walk by. It's impossible to connect with people as people because we let ourselves get divided only by borders, but also by our occupations, social status, and other arbitrary self-imposed barriers.
I am not saying that we should not strive to be the very best people and professionals we can be. This is not a call to "lean out." By all means, let's strive to be amazing, but let's also aspire to be more gentle with ourselves and with others.
I know, in the internet age, many people think boundaries are passé. This is clear to me when I contemplate people's selfies on social media and their transgressions on Twitter. But I want to reframe the discussion to show that boundaries can be healthy. So let's explore some of the benefits.
As a girl, a wise woman told me my eyes would elicit people's secrets throughout my life. I took her words to heart. From that day forward, I resolved to be a gatekeeper not a gossiper, and in some mystical way, like a magnetic field, her prophecy came true.
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Everyone should act as a leader to make a strong environment for their business. If you are reading this, you may be a smart leader that knows how to earn money and build long-term relationships with your clients. If you analyze the key behind this kind of success you will find there is a simple answer: empathy.
I know that many of us feel hurt when men in general are blamed for violence against women. And many of us have or do feel the need to exclaim, "not all men!" And its true, not all men hurt women. And some of us have been hurt by women. But I encourage, implore, beg and hope all men will consider, just consider, what it means to walk through the world with the privilege of being seen as a man.