Do you think there is any difference between sich hineindenken and sich einfühlen ? They both mean to empathize and to try to understand someone.

2 Answers 2


There is a difference. Sich hineindenken is connected to logically understanding a problem or a person while sich einfühlen is better used to refers to emotional states.

For example you can say Ich muss mich in das Problem/die Aufgabe hineindenken. (I will have to think about the problem/task) This would sound a bit strange with einfühlen, but would still be understandable.


"Sich hineindenken": sich in eine Person und ihre jeweilige Situation hineinversetzen. It is not commonly used for abstract things which are not directly connected with a person, like general problems or tasks, but it is not wrong. You'd rather say "ein Problem durchdenken" or "sich in eine Aufgabe einarbeiten" or "sich mit einem Problem vertraut machen".

"Sich einfühlen": Charakter, Gefühle und Gefühlssituation einer Person nachempfinden. This is not an intellectual, but an empathic process.

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