"We humans are a deeply and intrinsically empathetic species — we can tune into the emotions, wishes, thoughts, intentions, and hopes of others, and we can make intelligent decisions about how we'll respond to the information we receive. Through our empathetic skills, we can get into synch with others, understand them, and meet their needs in ingenious ways," writes Karla McLaren, the author of The Language of Emotions. Her studies have taken her through the healing of her own childhood trauma, into an empathetic healing career, and now into the fields of sociology, neurology, and social psychology.

McLaren begins with a survey you can take to find out how empathetic you really are. She then gives a brief history of this social and emotional skill followed by an examination of the six essential aspects of empathy: emotional contagion, empathetic accuracy, emotional regulation, perspective taking, concern for others, and perceptive engagement.

In the author's eyes, emotions are your empathetic entree into understanding yourself and others more deeply. McLaren shares five empathetic mindfulness skills including "Rejuvenating Yourself." In the final section of the book, she examines the ways we can flourish in the home, the workplace, the community, and the world. McLaren encourages both working on your emotions and for social justice.