How do your shoes fit today? Are they snug, lending themselves to be supportive? A little beat up, telling yourself you’ll get around to buying new ones when you have time? Shiny white kicks that can be seen for blocks? You go to leave a friends house and in the dark garage, you place someone else’s shoes on your feet. It feels different, different enough to know that it fits but it’s not yours. Now, what if the shoes were three sizes too small? No way you could even get them on, more or less wear them. This is how empathy works. Just because you can’t walk a mile in shoes three sizes too small doesn’t mean you can’t understand the path that they are on. We better understand people close to us who are encountering the same life challenges. You can feel empathy for things you don’t understand and people you cannot relate to. Sure the shoes don’t fit, or are a different color. Some newer, some worn. No matter the characteristics of said shoe… it is still a shoe. Be open to empathy, your heart will love it. Care for the shoes or perspectives of others and value them. Overcome the barriers that we so easily put up.