The Gift of the Empath


Published:

You’re in a crowd, surrounded by people. You’re starting to feel uneasy. You break out in a sweat. Your heartbeat increases. You’re feeling sad, happy, depressed, anxious – all at the same time. You suddenly feel as though you want to scream.

You are an empath.

To a certain degree, we are all empathic; it’s programmed into our DNA. As hunter/gatherers, we needed to know when wild animals were about, follow the changes in weather patterns, or where to find our next meal. Today, we get those gut feelings, or somehow perceive through our senses when a person or a location just doesn’t feel right. For many of us, we go about our daily lives, acknowledging what we feel and move on.

However, as with everything else, there are degrees to empathy. Some people are more sensitive than others and are known as empaths. Rather than feel the emotions and let them go, they are, in essence, human sponges who soak up so much of the world around them and physically feel the emotions of others around them. They become overwhelmed, losing their boundaries of where they begin and end. The energy they feel is so heavy, all they want to do is hide. Because of this, some consider their empathy a curse.  

We know because we grew up this way.

However, once you learn how empathy works, it actually becomes a wonderful gift, something inspiring, and yes, even magical. Instead of hiding away from the energy, you can actually change it.  

Albert Einstein explained how energy cannot be destroyed. But its vibration can be changed. To illustrate this, think about how you feel when you’re depressed or angry or sad. What do those emotions do to you physically? You probably feel heavy, as though you’re walking through muck. Time slows down and you find yourself carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. Your stomach tightens and your chest may ache.

Now, how do you feel when you’re in love, or something wonderful has just happened to you? You feel light, as though you could fly. Time speeds up.

These two examples demonstrate the vibration of the energy you’re feeling. When you give into depression or sadness or anger, the energy has a lower vibration to it. It becomes heavier. As a feeling human being, you physically feel that heaviness. On the other hand, when you’re feeling happy, the vibration is higher. It doesn’t have the oppressive weight to it. You don’t feel as though you’re walking through mud.  

Everything is made up of energy and everything has an energetic vibration to it. Plants, animals, rocks, trees – all these have an energetic vibration. Why do you feel refreshed when you walk through the woods or sit with your back up against a tree? Or walk along the ocean? Because nature is happy being nature. Plants, animals, trees and rocks have no problem being what they are. They don’t strive to become something they’re not. It’s we humans who have a hard time being who we are.  

You try your best to negotiate the muddy waters of co-existing by being what people want you to be in order to fit in. Why? Because your gift of empathy allows you to feel deeply the emotions of love and acceptance. Knowing how wonderful those emotions are, you desperately seek to recapture that feeling. However, in the process, you begin to bargain yourself away, becoming whatever someone else wants you to be in order to feel that love and acceptance. Unlike nature, you start the process of losing who you truly are. Or you hide away, becoming a recluse because you can’t stand to feel all that you do. Unfortunately, even by hiding away, you will still feel, even if it’s just your own emotions you’re feeling.  

Relationships test you because you know if your partner or friend is lying to you. How do you know this? Because an untruth has a lower vibration to it. And if there’s one thing an empath is an expert at, it’s feeling the truth of energy in any given moment.  

So, how do you try and get a handle on what you feel on a daily basis?

First is to understand that no matter what you feel, it’s just energy. You don’t need to get into an adversarial relationship with it. You don’t need to own it. You don’t need to plug into it.  What you can do is change its vibration.

Of course there are many ways to learn about energy, but we’ve found the following two techniques to be the easiest to learn and use, and also quite effective. They can be used by anyone, no matter the degree of their empathic abilities.    

Grounding

Grounding allows you to remember you are made up of Earth and can connect back to it, allowing whatever energies you are feeling to move through you and out your feet. It’s very simple and effective, especially when you’re feeling overwhelmed, whether by your own emotions or someone else’s. In fact, you will hear many times that you shouldn’t ground someone else’s energy. However, whether it’s yours or someone else’s, you’re still feeling it. You still need to deal with it. Step one is to realize – it’s all just energy. You don’t need to own or take it on. You have the option to move it out of your energy field and into the earth. As you do this, the energy around you starts to change. You are, in effect, lightening up the energy. You will feel the difference, and so will others around you.

Close your eyes and picture a red ball about a foot beneath the soles of your feet. You may actually feel a tingling in your feet as you picture this red ball. Now slowly visualize yourself bringing that red ball up your legs and into your stomach. The stomach area is where many empaths feel discomfort and a tightness when they’re plugging into someone else’s energy and taking it on themselves. Let the red ball sit in your stomach and watch it spin as it gathers all the energies and emotions that are stuck there. You should start to feel a lightness as the red ball takes in all the emotions that have physically attached to you. It should only take a few moments.  Now watch the ball slowly drop down past your stomach, down your legs and back out through the soles of your feet into the earth. The more you do this consciously, the more you are training your body to do this unconsciously. You’ll know you’re grounding when your feet start to tingle or grow warm and you physically feel lighter.

Mastery

This is a little bit more difficult, but we can attest to how useful and successful it is. If you start to see emotions as simply energy, you can begin to get a handle on how to deal with them. For example, let’s say you have a friend named Mary. Mary has just said something that really upsets you. You’re so angry, your stomach is churning. Taking our theory that everything is energy, by reacting the way you’re reacting, you’ve just given that anger a job to do. You’ve plugged into the anger, given it a story (Mary made me angry) and the energy is now clinging to you. An easy rule to remember is that energy follows intention. If you, whether consciously or unconsciously intend to be angry, sad, depressed, or happy, the energy will always follow that intention.

There is a way to deal with anger, or sadness or frustration. After all, who knows energy better than one who has to feel it all the time? In simple terms, don’t give the energy a job to do. Don’t attach a story to that energy. Allow yourself simply to feel the purity of the anger without thinking “Mary made me angry.” The thought process is more like, “Okay, I’m feeling angry. Let’s see where this goes.” Remember, it’s just energy. As humans, we’re born to feel. That’s how we learn and experience life.

Think of it this way. By attaching a story to the anger, you’ve created a coat hook in your energy field. Now the anger has a place to attach itself to and it’s harder to get rid of. But if you just feel the anger without attaching a story or giving it a job, it has no place to attach to. You haven’t created that coat hook. And like a coat that has no hook to hang itself onto, it will fall to the floor, as will the emotion. Without that story, the anger will move right through you and ground itself out. A few moments later you’ll wonder just what you were angry about in the first place. This takes a bit of practice, but it does work. It just takes a little more awareness on your part to catch yourself before you become so immersed in the emotion that it becomes harder to pull out of.

Regardless of how little or how much energy and emotion you feel, there is still a responsibility to what you put out on a daily basis, because whatever you put out, others are feeling it, whether they want to or not. Therefore, do you want to add more anger, more sadness, more fear to a world that is swimming in negativity? Or do you want to actually begin to change the energy around you, one person at a time, starting with yourself?  

Bety Comerford and Steve Wilson are shamanic healers with over thirty years experience teaching and assisting empaths to embrace their gifts. They are the authors of The Reluctant Empath, finalist in the 2015 Coalition of Visionary Resources awards for Best Contemporary Spirituality Book. Their latest book, The Empath’s Quest will be published by Schiffer Publishing in late 2016. Visit www.comerfordwilson.com.

See also:
Researchers Say Watching Movies Helps You Work Your Empathy Muscle
Physical Empathy and Emotional Empathy

Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Daily Astrology

April 20, 2019

Changes are afoot The Sun arrives in earthy Taurus shortly before dawn. Venus makes her entrance into Aries just minutes after noon. The Taurus Sun coincides with the heart ofspringtime, riots of colorful blossoms, trills of birdsongs and countless other…
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Alternative Health Directory

Browse all listings »

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Calendar

April 2019

Come and learn the wisdom of the Tarot! In this class we will dissect and discover the nuances and charms of the cards. The tarot deck has 78 cards in it, each with its own archetypal and...

Cost: $125

Where:
Moth and Moon Studio
173 South River Road
Suite #4
Bedford, NH  03110
View map »


Sponsor: Moth and Moon Studio
Telephone: 603-782-3674
Contact Name: Danielle Dionne
Website »

More information

For girls ages 10-15 with their moms or other adult female caregiver/friend This mini retreat is designed specifically for mothers and daughters to share quality positive time with one other....

Cost: $75/pair

Where:
YogaLife Institute of NH
6 Chestnut Street
Lower Level
Exeter, NH  03833
View map »


Sponsor: YogaLife Institute of NH
Contact Name: Alice Bentley
Website »

More information

When people are in an extreme state of peacelessness, doubt or despair they often look to a higher source for peace, love, strength & wisdom. Learn to connect to the higher source to gain...

Cost: Admission free, all are welcome

Where:
InnerSpace Meditation Center And Gallery
1110 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA  02138
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
No Events

Class is limited to only 12 people. Be sure to register early!   Class dates: Tuesdays—4/16, 4/23, 5/7, 5/14, 5/21 *Tuesday, 4/30 there is no meeting   Explore deeper...

Cost: $250

Where:
Circles of Wisdom
386 Merrimack Street, Suite 1-A
Methuen, MA  01844
View map »


Sponsor: Circles of Wisdom
Telephone: 978-474-8010
Contact Name: Cathy Kneeland
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

April 17–20 9am-3pm each day Experience transformation guided by Mother Mary. Through Divine vibration, you will be aligned for quicker healing and evolving with mind body spirit and...

Cost: $500

Where:
, MA


Sponsor: The LoveLight Center
Telephone: (207) 216-9584
Contact Name: Cheryl Banfield

More information

The American Center for Bioregulatory Medicine and Dentistry (The BioMed Center) is the most comprehensive center in North America for bioregulatory medicine and dentistry. Come see what...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
111 Chestnut Street
Providence, RI
View map »


Website »

More information

For all ages.   In this class hand-building techniques are taught with different projects monthly. Please see the list of projects below: Wednesday, April 17th, 4:30–6:00 PM...

Cost: $35

Where:
Voice of Clay
16 Meetinghouse Hill Rd
Brookline, NH  03033
View map »


Sponsor: Voice of Clay
Telephone: 603-672-2626
Contact Name: Wendy
Website »

More information

Discover how you can release tight muscles and improve range of motion in locked joints in a weekly ESSENTRICS stretch classes led by Raindrop Fisher, certified Essentrics instructor. Raindrop is a...

Cost: $10 drop-in / $100 for 12 classes

Where:
Village at Waterman Lake
Function Room - Chalet Bldg
715 Putnam Pike
Greenville, RI  02828
View map »


Sponsor: Healthier Fit Lifestyle
Telephone: 401-678-0950
Contact Name: Raindrop Fisher
Website »

More information

Instructor: Pam Driscoll Wednesdays, April 17, May 8, 22, June 5, 19, 6:30pm–7:30pm Join us for the Mid-Week Meditation Sampler at Creative Spirit…an opportunity to pause,...

Cost: $20 per class

Where:
Creative Spirit
80 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA  01945
View map »


Sponsor: Creative Spirit
Telephone: 781-797-0389
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Sample three types of meditation and discuss which you liked best and why, at She Breathes Balance & Wellness Studio in Walpole, MA.

Where:
She Breathes Balance & Wellness Studio
85 West Street
2nd Floor
Walpole, MA
View map »


Telephone: (508) 282-7877
Website »

More information

Instructor: Peyton Pugmire Thursdays: April 18, May 16, June 13 6:30pm–8:30pm Adult Level “In the same way that all dreams come in the service of health and...

Cost: Pay what you wish

Where:
Creative Spirit
80 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA  01945
View map »


Sponsor: Creative Spirit
Telephone: 781-797-0389
Website »

More information

This development group is for students of mediumship looking to enhance, expand and practice their mediumship abilities. Traditional and progressive mediumship development techniques, topics and...

Cost: $25 per person

Where:
Moth and Moon Studio
173 South River Road
Suite #4
Bedford, NH  03110
View map »


Sponsor: Moth and Moon Studio
Telephone: 603-782-3674
Contact Name: Danielle Dionne
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
No Events

Join us for a day long workshop as we learn to connect to the energy of the angelic realm. Our primary purpose is working with 9 incredible angels of the healing energy field. You will learn the...

Cost: $99

Where:
Moth and Moon Studio
173 South River Road
Suite #4
Bedford, NH  03110
View map »


Sponsor: Moth and Moon Studio
Telephone: 603-782-3674
Contact Name: Danielle Dionne
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags