Are you an empath? ✨


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Many, many people that are interested in New Age concepts or pagan religions tend to be empaths. But what is an empath? An empath is one who experiences the emotions of others . You may be able to read the room and know what happened, or you may be in a crowd full of people and experience sadness, anger, or even panic, for no apparent reason. Empaths come from all walks of life, but it is often those who are more open to the world around them that experience it the most.

Traits of an Empath

Here are several common traits of empaths to help you determine if you might be one. Keep in mind that just because you may experience some of these traits does not necessarily mean you are an empath. Some traits of an empath can be learned - like reading the energy in a room - and some are innate.

Taking on the emotions of others

This is the most common trait of an empath. Since an empath can feel the emotions of others, it often happens that they will experience them as well. An empath may match anger with someone they are arguing with, they may match sadness with someone they are close to, or they may even match panic and anxiety of anyone in the area.


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Love of nature

It is thought that empaths enjoy the outdoors because nature has no ulterior motive. Nature has no emotions, She just is. Being outdoors and among the living plants and animals is a peaceful experience to the empath and can help calm any unwanted emotions they may be carrying.

Creativity

Since empaths are more in tune with their emotions and the emotions of others, it is said that they are more creative. They have the ability to tap into the creative aspect of themselves and create art, sing, dance, and many other forms of creative expression to help them cope with the sometimes overwhelming feelings of everyone around them.

Drawn to the metaphysical

Like I mentioned above, most empaths are interested in the occult or New Age concepts. It is thought that this is because of their ability to feel the energy and emotions of others, but no one is sure of the exact reason.

Knowing

Empaths have the ability to just know things. This could be knowing whether someone is being honest or knowing a fact without having all the evidence. They are more attuned with the energies around them as well as their own gut feeling. The stronger these abilities are, the stronger the knowing.


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Public places are overwhelming

Since empaths can take on the emotions of others, being somewhere that has a large group of people can be debilitating for an empath that does not know how to shield themselves. This is often found in empaths who are denying who they are, or in empaths who have not learned proper energy work. At times, even with the proper techniques, public places can still be overwhelming with the amount of emotion held there.

Watching violence or tragedy is unbearable

Going along with the emotions of others and public places being overwhelming, any form of violence or tragedy can be too much for the empath to bear. This could be anything from a street fight to terrorism, and it will all depend on the empath. Watching the terror and fear play across the faces of those affected may be something the empath can’t handle.

Sympathy pains

Like taking on the emotions of others, many empaths will take on the physical ailments of those close to them in a form of sympathy pain. The best example I can think of - that has nothing to do with being an empath - is someone having the same pains as a pregnant person. Feeling sympathy pains is like that for the empath, but with any pain or ailment.

Good listeners

Empaths have a natural way about them that attracts damaged people. People tend to offload their problems onto an empath with unoccupied ears, and the empath will probably listen. They understand and feel the need for the other person to unload their emotional baggage to make them lighter, and the empath naturally wants to help.


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Need solitude

Like anyone else who has an emotionally taxing job, empaths will often need a place of solitude to go and recharge. This can be a place to meditate, journal, listen to music, or even just a quiet bath alone. This time of solitude is vital to the empath so they do not get overloaded with the emotions of others.

What now?

So, you’ve determined that you might be an empath? Now comes the work. Most empaths develop a natural protection method without even knowing it, but developing this protection more will lead to an easier time in crowds and functioning daily. There are several ways this can be done, and they all take practice.

Shielding

Creating an energy barrier around you - like a bubble - for when you go out in public places is the most common way to protect yourself from unwanted emotional attacks. This can be as simple as a wall of energy or - if you are more advanced in your energy work - can be layer upon layer of protective barriers.

An energy barrier can be a simple thing to construct. With practice, you will be able to do it quickly and hold it for long periods of time.

Visualize yourself with a bubble of energy around you, attached at the center of your body. This energy can be whatever color you want, but the most common is white. See this bubble as flowy - like rippling water - moving in and out from you as it pleases. Now, focus on bringing this bubble closer to you, keeping it from rippling around and grabbing the energy of others. Harden your shield and command it to stay put and protect you.

With practice, this technique can be done in a pinch and held for as long as you need to.


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Protective Jewelry

There are crystals out there that are perfect for the empath to wear or carry with them. These include things like hematite, amethyst, black tourmaline, and malachite. Wearing these crystals as jewelry or carrying them with you can be an added protective barrier against unwanted emotional attachment, negative energies, and the constant barrage of societal pressure present in today’s world.


With the new year celebration coming up, it is especially important for the empath to learn these shielding techniques and do what they can to keep themselves protected. The new year can be a huge source of emotional energy for anyone celebrating or deciding on their resolutions.


Are you an empath? How do you shield and protect yourself?

Do you have any stories or experiences you want to share?

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I would say I am. Out of all of these characteristics these are the ones that fit me

Love of nature: I love plants, flowers, gardens, animals

Creativity: I love art and make art. I love music and I used to play 2 instruments
Drawn to the metaphysical: Occult & New Age concepts

Knowing: It happens at random times for me

Public places are overwhelming: I have social anxiety and I hate when there’s just so many people either at an event, stores, museums/attractions. It just gets overwhelming and too noisy for me.

Good Listeners: I love when my friends or family come to me to just talk about anything and vice versa.

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I find that a lot of my friends and people in the Pagan community carry some traits of an empath. It is interesting to note that we seem to be more open and in tune with the world and energies around us.

Do you practice any shielding techniques? Have you found that being an empath affects your daily life sometimes?

I know with me, I attribute a lot of my social anxiety symptoms to being empathic, and it takes a lot for me to shield myself when I’m in a large crowd of people.

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I relate to every possible characteristic of an empath and mist of them very strongly.

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All those characteristics certainly resonate with me. I never knew what Empath meant and nor did I look into it.

A few years ago, I went for a Tarot card reading with some girlfriends. My friends went in first and I was the last. When it was my turn, the reader did her thing and gave my reading. Then, there was an awkward silence as she kept looking at me. Without saying a word, I became emotional. Not because the reading was negative; there was just something in the air. I don’t have an explanation as to why I became emotional. She leaned back, looked directly at me, and said: “you’re an empath”. I was what? What does that suppose to mean? In all honesty, I thought it meant communicating with the dead. That scared the hell out of me and I was not impressed. Obviously, that is not the case, silly me. She suggested that I carry a mirror in front of my abdomen to deflect absorbing other’s emotions. If not a mirror, then a book, purse, etc. I had to physically block my Solar Plexus. Did I take her advice? Absolutely not!

Fast forward in time. There have been many occasions when my mood could shift immediately depending on who I was with. A prime example is with my closest girlfriend, whom I had met at my workplace. We had connected instantaneously, which is very rare, as I usually don’t allow anyone to come into my circle of influence. As our friendship deepened, so did our emotional connection. When sitting down for a coffee, taking one glance into her face, I could read her mood immediately and subconsciously feel the same way with no idea why. I told myself it was compassion. Over time, it dawned on me that she was not in a good mental place.

One particular day, I was deeply focused on my work when I had a strong urge to surprise her. I remember being in such a great mood. So off I go to her office to find that she wasn’t there. For some reason, I felt rooted to stick by the elevators. Saying to myself another 5 minutes as perhaps she was just running late. I hear the elevator ding and out she comes. It took me a split second for my heart to drop BEFORE the elevator door opened. Something didn’t feel right. She collapsed into my arms and started sobbing. After a moment, she admitted to me that she had contemplated suicide the night before. I cried with her (not helpful at all). Without going into other details, she was sent to Emergency pronto.

In hindsight, I was feeling her moods. I feel guilty as I write this, but there were times that I would have to keep myself busy for a few days as I needed some air. She would say: “Ana, you are like my angel. How do you know when to be here when I needed you. It is like you know.”. I can’t answer that question as I do not know. This is only one example. We continue to be good friends but with a distance.

This may sound strange but when I am with someone (familiar or not), I feel like I have a Rolodex of “emotions/feelings/intuition” that spins in my head until it stops at a card. It is rapid-fire and my intuition comes into play. I usually am bang-on. That person may deny it at first, however, the truth comes out. :wink:

Love of nature and Solitude

Being in nature is my happy place, my therapy. That is where I can clear my thoughts and feelings. I tend to run between 5 to 6 km every second day (sorry it is not converted to miles). On the other days that I am not running, I walk up to 2 hours or more. When I’m feeling mixed-up, I will go for a walk to seek internal peace or quiet the mind. If not, I will lock myself in my bathroom :smiley:

Watching violence or tragedy is unbearable. So true.

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This doesn’t sound strange at all. It actually sounds like an accurate representation of how we as empaths can feel the energy and emotions of other people. It’s a good visualization!

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Oh, Megan this is a beautiful post… I had never considered myself an empath (or really knew much about it, to be honest!), but after going through the list and reading each point, it seems like something I really relate to.

Especially about sensing and taking on the emotions of others- I’ve always done this, but never had an explanation why. Now I think I might finally know! :blush:

Thank you so much for sharing! :heart:

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You’re welcome! I am finding that as the generations go on, the children become more and more empathic. My daughter is really like this and can pick up on things really quickly - sometimes things that I didn’t even know were an issue lol

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My daughter is amethyst dragon, she hoards them and of course hematite, for grounding. She is very sensitive empath.

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Yes!!! In the field I am in compassion fatigue is more than real.
Taking on other emotional state as well as your own is draining and hurts sometimes.
I was just talking about needing to be more balanced. Empath plus compassion fatigue has lead me into very dark places metaphysically, emotionally, physically… All the Ally’s lol.
I would be interested in seeing how other limit themselves, protect themselves and when you have gone to far, how do you find you way back? It’s easy to read an article or give advise, however I would love to hear about someone’s journey. From lost to being able to breathe again. The struggle is real. #empathproblems #someonethrowmealifeline hahahha!

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I’ve never worked in psychology nor had to deal long-term with taking on the heavy emotions of others, but I think it’s an interesting and very important area of studies, so a few weeks back (trying to pass time during lockdown!) I took an online course about Psychological First Aid through John Hopkins University.

PFA

The course is free through Coursera, and sometimes they have promotions where you can ever get the course certificate for free too! I recommend it for anyone who works in an emotionally draining job, or considers themself to be an empath!

The last section is about self-care and how to recover from giving so much of yourself to others. The course recommends the following:

  • Stress-management techniques (deep breathing, and especially meditation! :woman_in_lotus_position:)
  • Having strong social connections to support you
  • Focusing on the good/positive things in your life
  • Believing that your presence is positive and that you are making a difference- even if you can’t see it

I loved the quote they used: "The best way to care for others is to care for yourself!"

If other empaths are feeling compassion fatigue and are emotionally drained- remember that it is very important to take care of yourself and your needs too! :heart:

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This resonates with me strongly, I’ve known for long that I’m an empath, public places and especially movies with intense feelings get overwhelming for me quick… I feel there are two edges that are blurred for me: what feelings are mine and what are someone else’s, and what’s real and what’s imaginary! Still, I take that sensitivity as a gift, and if someone gave me an opportunity to make those edges permanently more distinct I’d run far and fast! :grin:

Shielding sounds like a really good idea though! :shield: I already tried the energy barrier and found some success! (Visualization comes easily to me after all, so that part wasn’t difficult! :smile_cat:) However I noticed that it’s a skill I’ll have to develop, for now I can create a barrier to block all feelings, not just negative ones, and there’s still a limit to how long I can stay in a crowded area or with a negative influence. However I already felt more relaxed and didn’t have to rely as much on my “usual” coping skill, drifting away from reality or like psychologists call it, dissociation by derealization! :heart:

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That’s great to hear! Energy shielding does take a bit of practice to be able to keep it up for longer periods of time, but it is possible!

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I am an empath been known since I was a child. When I was a kid, I use to go and walk barefooted in the grass or mud and I would do this after school. I got older after work I would go in my room for an hour to recharge. If I am invited to an event I need 3 days in advance to prepare for it. I have shield myself with two-way mirrors to block all negative energy.

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That is a great shielding technique - one that I would definitely recommend to anyone else that needs a shielding technique, too!

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