EMPATHY is our Presence and Attention focused on others or ourselves and what we are experiencing Now.   We are more Life-Enabled / Happy / Empowered, the more our Needs are met.   Empathy and this game are about helping us to meet our Needs.

We are first invited to vent our Jackals: our anger & judgments.   Then we discover the neutral Observations behind them.   Next we explore our REAL Feelings & their connected Needs.   We create a picture to show their Intensity & Relationship to each other, and Priority in which they are to be dealt with.

We can then identify Strategies to help meet those Needs, and create Requests of ourselves and others, to help work those Strategies…   Finally a snapshot of our play board is taken, giving us a Map of our Hearts & Minds, along with a written report.


There are two Empathy Roles: Speaker and Listener

The Speaker receives Empathy:

• Is ALWAYS the expert on themself, the Listener/Helper is only a Guide and Witness.

• Makes all decisions & is in-charge of Game play, Selection, card Movement, & Tool use.

• Helps themself when ever the Speaker desires.

The Listener gives Empathy:

• Gives Empathy, mostly by Listening & Witnessing to the Speaker.

• Guesses about what is Alive Now in the Speaker.

The Listener Talks to the Speaker ONLY when:

• Guesses Feelings & Needs of Speaker

• Questioning for Clarity.

• Acknowledging Speaker Vulnerability.

• Reframing Speaker Dialog, adding more: Neutral Non-judgment wording for Observations, Feelings, Needs.

• When Speaker’s words are not in the Now (but in the Past or Future).


CHOOSE a Style of Play (Solo, 1-on-1, 1-on-Couple, 1-to-Many, Many-to-1, Many-to-Many):

• Solo: 1-Speaker is Helping themself

• One-on-One: 1-Helper, 1-Speaker

• One-on-Couple: a Couple

1-Helper, 1-Speaker(partner), 1-Witness(partner)

• One-Helps-Many: 1-Group: (create Group picture)

1-Helper, X-Speakers, X-Witnesses

• Many-Hekos-One: 1-Group: (create Group picture)

X-Helpers, X-Speakers, X-Witnesses

• Many-Helps-Many: 2-Groups: (create Group picture)

X-Helpers, X-Speakers, X-Witnesses


CHOOSE the Type of Empathy (Positive, Negative, or CheckIn):

Decide what kind of Empathy you want to play, around
  what is Alive Now inside you.

There are three kinds of play:

  • Negative: a Problem, Issue, or Situation

  • Positive: a Celebration

  • CheckIn: Positive & Negative as[ectss Alive Inside Now


DECIDE Topic of Play:

Our power is in the Now.   To really Connect to our Feelings and Needs we must Focus on what is ALIVE in us right Now.

Even if our Topic for Empathy concerns the Past or Future, we must Connect with how and what we Feel about it NOW.

We do not want to put ourselves back into the Past or forward into the Future in that situation, but rather be PRESENT to what is Alive Now inside Us!

Now decide a specific Negative or Positive Topic or CheckIn that you want to explore & have Empathy for…


A Backstory is used only for exploring Positive and Negative Empathy Types, not for CheckIns.

A Backstory is a brief history of what happened around the Negative or Positive Topic we have chosen, in just a sentence or two.   This helps the Speaker and Facilitator or Helper to get a general understanding of the issue & its context.

Hearing a Backstory allows the brain to understand better, while the Heart can open and soften.   Backstory is not intended to be used for journaling or venting… it’s just a couple sentences.