Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

How children teach you empathy

Evan Koslow

Evan Koslow

I always enjoy the weekends. Not only to slow down from the grind of the week but, more importantly, to spend time with my family.

As much as we may teach our children, there are times that your children teach you. And watching my kids play with each other and their friends this weekend, it became obvious to me that children have so much more empathy for others then adults do.

Obviously, I understand life’s twists and turns change people and can make them jaded. However, the more I think about and watch children interact not only with each other but with adults, the more I realized many attorneys have lost the ability to empathize with others. With other attorneys. With the other side’s position. They become so entrenched with their clients’ goals they will stop at nothing to try and accomplish it (thinking that this is the end all be all). They do so with no regard with how their actions (or inactions) will affect the other side.

Because this unfortunately occurs on a regular basis, not only have I begun to talk to my children and myself about how to react when meeting those who lack empathy, but I also have conversations with my clients about how to prevent the other side’s actions (or inactions) from affecting them.

One of my kids’ favorite movies is “Meet the Robinsons.” There is a great song called “Little Wonders” that says in part:

Let it go
Let it roll right off your shoulder
Don’t you know
The hardest part is over?
Let it in
Let your clarity define you
In the end
We will only just remember how it feels

Our lives are made
In these small hours
These little wonders
These twists and turns of fate
Time falls away
But these small hours
These small hours still remain

Let it slide
Let your troubles fall behind you
Let it shine
Until you feel it all around you
And I don’t mind
If it’s me you need to turn to
We’ll get by
It’s the heart that really matters in the end

We only live this life only once, so make it the best it possible can be. And while you are at it, try to make it the best for those that come into your life, no matter how they’ve entered it.