Have you been told you are too sensitive by family, friends, teachers, co-workers? This is often our experience when we are an empath, E.G. particularly sensitive to subtle energy.
Being an empath is different from being empathic. We can be empathetic, understanding another’s distress or situation and have compassion for them, but not be an empath. An empath experiences things profoundly. They can feel others emotions, be deeply affected by others mental, emotional and physical state as if it were theirs. This often happens without any normal communication between people!
Empathy: The Challenge Before the Gift
Everyone has the capacity to sense energy, but some of us are more sensitive and tuned in either because of our basic energetic signature or because the impact of life events has drawn this innate ability forward. For me, I was born that way and also had life experiences that heightened my sensitivity. One of the ways I used to describe how this felt was to say that it felt like I was born without skin! I was often on overload, stressed and confused about my experience. Learning how to manage my energy field was the key to me moving out of the overwhelm of feeling everything and everyone around me and into a place where this capacity became a gift.
Empaths are often highly intuitive, have healing ability and are “spiritual warriors”. Empaths are often a source of great help and solace to others, but typically end up running on empty and begin to suffer themselves in ways that are not helpful or positive. Negative habits, addictions, and stress related issues can all be the outcome of unrecognized or unmanaged energy sensitivity.
Until empaths understand the underpinnings of their sensitivity and learn skills for clearing and managing energy, their energy-sensitive will be difficult, stressful and debilitating mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
Without awareness of how to create healthy boundaries and how to consciously focus and flow energy we tend to be disorganized, tense, on emotional and metal overload and experience many limitations.
Happily we now have a name for being energy sensitive, several actually emotional empath, energy sensitive, highly sensitive person, and intuitive empath to name some common labels. To name something and recognize its characteristics is to begin to be able to understand and deal with it.
So how do you know if you are an empath?
Here are some questions to help identify and recognize this challenging gift.
Are you hypersensitive to noise?
Do you find it difficult to say “NO”?
Do you become overly stimulated easily?
Have you often been labeled as overly or too sensitive?
Are you extraordinarily sensitive to others’ emotions?
Do you try to avoid large groups, noisy or crowded places?
Do you feel things deeply, much more so than those around you seem to?
Are you very sensitive to negativity, bad news, or violence in movies or newscasts?
Are you easily overloaded or overwhelmed by others’ issues, pain or circumstances?
Are large groups, crowded or noisy places overwhelming, draining or exhausting for you?
Do you find it hard to disengage from someone who is going on and on about their troubles?
Do you tend to feel others mental distress, or their physical or emotional pain as if it is yours?
Do you have a pattern of putting others’ needs before yours often automatically and unconsciously?
Do you make sure you take your own car if you can so you are free to leave places when you have had enough?
The greater the number of yes answers to these questions, the greater likelihood that you are an empath. Remember it is both a challenge and a gift. The gift becomes more apparent as you learn inner self care, how to manage your energy and how to build and maintain healthy boundaries.
The questions above can point in the direction of where change needs to happen in your life in order to turn your energy sensitivity from a challenge to a gift. Where will you start? Where can you begin to turn your gift into an asset and make it work for you in your life?
I would love to hear of your experiences re: being an empath!