Empathy in a digital world

Being empathetic in a digital world can be challenging.

Never before have we been so connected to the world around us. Social media, 24/7 news reporting and the proliferation of portable technology means that we have access to whomever and wherever we choose at the touch of a button. While on the surface this should cultivate more empathy, it does in fact breed apathy and indifference. We’ve become so saturated with the despair, heartache and terror of others that it’s hard to empathise with their situations, no matter how grave or inhumane they may seem. I think it’s fair to say that we’ve all been guilty of glancing at a devastating photograph or hearing a dreadful news story, only to simply continue to go about our day. This lack of empathy or ‘compassion fatigue’ is not a new phenomenon but it’s certainly one that’s becoming more prevalent in our fast-paced, ever-connected society.

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