Empathic v Empath
Life here on earth is challenging to say the least, so why do we choose to come here? Because it’s challenging! If it was easy there’d be no potential for growth, and our souls are all about growth!
As if life were not challenging enough, many of us souls are also empaths. Now you can be empathic which means you have an ability to understand and share the feelings of another but to BE an empath is different. As an empath you are basically an emotional barometer, measuring the emotions around you, you’re also an emotional sponge, absorbing the emotions of those around you, it can leave you wondering if you’re bi-polar because your mood can vary so widely & frequently.
There are pros & cons to being an empath, some of which I’m sure you’re aware of, however, if it’s news to you that you’re an empath (if you’re reading this, you’re an empath) then some of this, if not all of this information will be new. You’re in good, but rare company, as it’s thought that only 1-2% of the world’s population are empaths, I think it’s higher & people just don’t realise.
Those who come to me for readings, coaching, healing or workshops, often have no idea they’re an empath, once they know it does explain a huge amount to them.
In our modern world with those who are neuro-divergent, those who are Indigo, Crystal, Rainbow Children etc plus those who have been born to work with Spirit this time round, they’re all empaths, add in those with mental health issues who are actually just incredibly sensitive to emotions and don’t understand their very nature and I’d say the percentage should be much higher!
Life As An Empath
Life as an empath takes your awareness of emotions to a heightened level, allowing you to not only understand but also deeply sense the emotions of those around you. While this offers profound insights and connections, it comes with its fair share of challenges. In this article, I’ll delve into the good and bad of being an empath, exploring their unique nature, the pros and cons, the origins of this trait, and the intriguing research surrounding it.
- What is an Empath? An empath is an individual who possesses an exceptional ability to intuitively sense and absorb the emotions, energies, and experiences of others. They often have a heightened sensitivity to emotional cues, which enables them to establish a deep emotional connection with people, animals, and even their surroundings. This heightened sensitivity can manifest through emotions, physical sensations, and even spiritual insights.
- The Pros and Cons of Being an Empath: Pros:
- Deep Connections: As an empath you forge deep and meaningful connections with others due to your innate ability to understand and resonate with emotions on a profound level. This allows you to provide unparalleled emotional support and be an excellent listener.
- Compassion and Healing: You often find yourself drawn to helping/healing professions, such as counselling, healthcare, or social work, where your natural ability to empathise aids in healing and comforting others.
- Intuition and Insight: You possess a heightened sense of intuition, allowing you to anticipate and understand the needs and concerns of those around you.
- Positive Influence: Simply by being there, your presence can positively affect the emotional atmosphere of a group, promoting harmony and emotional well-being.
- Emotional Overload: You’re at risk of becoming emotionally overwhelmed due to your constant exposure to intense feelings. This can lead to emotional exhaustion, anxiety, and even physical symptoms. It can be of particular challenge if you already suffer from emotional issues such as anxiety, depression etc.
- Boundary Issues: You may struggle to differentiate between your own emotions and those of others, leading to blurred boundaries and difficulty in maintaining emotional autonomy.
- Vulnerability to Negativity: You may absorb not only positive emotions but also negative emotions & energies, which can affect your mental and emotional health.
- Draining Relationships: Being in relationships with emotionally draining individuals can take a toll on your well-being, as you’ll have a tendency to absorb the emotional struggles of those around them. Empaths and narcissists tend to have a moth/flame relationship which can be toxic, leading to trauma.
- Nature vs. Nurture: Can Empathy be Learned? The question of whether empathy is an innate trait or can be learned is a subject of ongoing debate. While some researchers argue that empathy has a genetic basis, emerging evidence suggests that it can also be cultivated through socialisation, education, and personal experiences. Therefore, while some individuals may be naturally predisposed to being empaths, others can develop empath skills over time with intentional practice and self-awareness. Personally, I believe that it is easy to bury this trait when we are young, society doesn’t really value it, in addition to which it can be painful being an empath and so we learn to protect ourselves. We also have a growing number of sociopaths & narcissists who do not care to feel!
- The Fascinating Research Surrounding Empaths: Recent scientific exploration into the world of empaths has shed light on various aspects of this unique trait. Researchers have used neuroimaging techniques to observe the brain activity of empaths and non-empaths, revealing distinct patterns when processing emotional stimuli. Additionally, studies have explored the potential genetic underpinnings of empathy, uncovering genes associated with emotional processing and social cognition.
One intriguing area of research focuses on mirror neurons, which are believed to play a role in empathy. Mirror neurons are neurons that fire both when an individual performs an action and when they observe someone else performing the same action. This suggests a neurological basis for understanding and sharing emotions.
Moreover, studies have investigated the impact of empathic abilities on mental health and well-being. While being an empath can lead to emotional strain, researchers have also found that practising self-care, setting healthy boundaries, and engaging in mindfulness techniques can mitigate the negative aspects of empathy.
Self-Care & Protection As An Empath
Crystals are a great way to protect yourself first & foremost, we all know prevention is better than cure. Try dark stones such as black tourmaline or haematite or even smokey quartz, these will ground you and protect you. No idea why nobody has invented a bra with pockets for crystals yet, so many women I know stuff their bra full of crystals. You can use bracelets, jewellery, palm stones or key rings. Basically, as long as the crystals are in your energy, you’ll be protected. I also have them around the door jamb to my house & reading room to ward off any negative emotions, thoughts etc.
Reiki as always is a great antidote to the emotions and energy that you can pick up through your day. If you know you’re going somewhere or know a meeting will be challenging, you can send Reiki ahead to cleanse the room or the event. Imagine you run a school for neurodivergent children, their energy can be in turmoil & intense but you don’t need to be swamped by it. Also if you use the same space week in, week out, you’d all benefit from a regular cleanse as those neuro-divergent children are highly sensitive to emotions & energies, which means you’re all in this cycle of layering up the energy of the space. Imagine a house where they’ve been wallpapering regularly for over 50 years, the build up would be a nightmare!!!
Please know, I’m not picking on anyone here, it is just a simple fact that the energy in certain situations or with certain people is going to really impact. Here’s some others so you know I’m thinking of various scenarios: schools, prisons, group counselling, addiction support such as AA. Places where there is counselling for children with behavioural issues etc. Domestic abuse shelters can be full of high emotions too. Any office space where there is low morale, high emotions and lots of back biting etc.
Self-Reiki at the end of a taxing day is great, but why wait that long? If you’ve just finished a taxing meeting, even on Zoom (words are energy), then go do a quick blast of self-Reiki. I’ve a client who gets so much abuse from certain people during their meetings that she has no choice but to send Reiki to everyone in advance & that she needs to Reiki herself before & after a meeting as well as sending it to the event itself.
Meditation is as always essential so you can step away from the people & events around you and switch off. This will help your parasympathetic system kick in & help your body dump the excess hormones from being in fight-flight-freeze.
Mindfulness is often lumped in with meditation, but it’s a separate tool. Mindfulness is about being in the moment & this can be eyes wide open, so focus on your breathing, focus on music, go outside & listen to the sounds of nature, even just focusing on the noise of traffic will do the trick, it’s just about distracting you away from your mind & thoughts so you can just be.
Visualisation is a great way to cleanse, ground & heal, simply imagine yourself in your favourite place; holiday resort, beach, woods, meadows, bed! It can be real or imagined, the mind doesn’t know the difference, it will react in the right way so you can relax. You can imagine a hoover sucking all the energetic debris in your energy or a shower washing your energy clean.
Protection; Every day, before you get ready for your day, put yourself into your suit of armour. This may be an energetic suit of armour or a bubble with you inside. Those toys you get from the arcade with the toy inside is another good one or put mirrors around you to deflect it all. It can be anything you like, even an armoured tank!!! You do need to tell your Guides that only anything for your highest good can come through, because you want to ensure that any positive energy is allowed through such as love, energy to recharge you etc.
The archangels are always there too so send out a request for their protection, you don’t need to know the names of the angels, you can call on them as a collective. Archangel Michael is usually seen as the protector if you do want to be specific, but as the angels all have their own speciality role, you may want to learn more about angels, for instance Archangel Metatron is great for working with children & Archangel Azrael is perfect if you work with those who are dying such as palliative care, hospices, ICU etc.
Nature is great if you can get out in your garden and get your toes in the soil or grass. A walk on the beach or through the fields & woods will all help you to rebalance.
Salt Scrub: Have a nice hot bath and throw in loads of salts, especially Epsom salts, have a nice soak and then scrub your body with the salt too as this cleanses any attachments you may have. You can add oil to the salt and condition your skin too!
In conclusion, being an empath is a complex and multifaceted trait that comes with both rewards and challenges for you. The ability to deeply connect and resonate with others’ emotions can be a powerful force for good, fostering compassion and understanding. However, as an empath you must also navigate the potential pitfalls of emotional overload and boundary challenges. Did you know you were an empath? Did this blog resonate for you? I’d love to hear from you as well as hear any other protection/cleansing exercises you do as an empath.
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