Have you ever heard the term EMPATH? Has someone said they think you are an EMPATH? I believe we should all embrace being EMPATHs.
What or Who is an Empath?
Empathy is the action of understanding, being aware of, sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another (of either the past or present) without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner.
An Empath is someone who understands the mental or emotional states of others in a way that defies conventional science and psychology. Empaths have the ability to sense the feelings, thoughts, and energies of people, plants, animals, places, or objects. In addition to sensing, Empaths absorb the energy of those around them. Empaths often experience stress or illness if they are bombarded by too many negative emotions. Empaths can also use their abilities to help others by imagining themselves in someone else’s situation and connecting with them on a deep level.
From my observation and experience of empaths, there are three qualities that stand out:
- They are extreme control freaks. Sometimes other people even call them “assholes,” or “bitches,” because of this behaviour.
- They feel they have to fix everyone and everything – no matter the cost to themselves emotionally, financially, or otherwise.
- They will ALWAYS want to be the drive of a vehicle no matter what – even if the other people are family members OR good friends. The one exception to this is if they trust everyone in the vehicle 1000% and trust the driver 10,000%! In these cases, the empath will feel comfortable with a diver other than themselves.
The reason behind these qualities is:
- Having control makes an empath feel safe. When they are in control, they do not get overwhelmed with the emotions of everyone around them.
- Because the empath can feel so much, they need to control a situation to alleviate their own experience of overwhelm. This means they will fix a situation to manage their (and others) feelings. They want to stop all the “noise” they are feeling.
- When the empath is the driver of a vehicle, they are forced to pull their aura in closer to themselves to focus on driving safely. (The empath’s aura is contained within the confines of the vehicle.) When the empath is in the passenger seat, they are wide open to receiving every emotion, feeling, sensation for the people in the vehicle and outside the vehicle. I have found that when two empaths are the only people in the vehicle and know and trust each other (relationship or not), they will both have their energy contained within the confines of the vehicle. In this case, they are feeding and trusting in each other’s energy and will feel calmer in the moment. They will not be in their guarded defensive mode. Once outside of the vehicle they are back in their “normal” way of life.
I believe empaths must know themselves fully inside and out. An empath needs to determine if a “feeling” they are experiencing is actually them OR if it is from someone else. If the “feeling” belongs to someone else, then the empath needs to quickly let it go and NOT try to fix or change the other person.
Reconnecting with Our Empath Feelings
A few years ago, I attended a seminar held by Dr. Judith Orloff M.D., who is herself an empath. She shared insight about this way of being, and you can read more here. I found this interesting and wanted to go deeper.
During a meditation in June, I asked the guides for more understanding about Empaths. I asked, “Are all humans supposed to be empaths?” – not merely “have empathy,” but be empaths.
The guides answered “YES, but to varying degrees.” I asked them to clarify.
The guides explained that all humans are all supposed to be empaths because it is part of our FEELING sense. The majority of humans have chosen to “block” these feelings for whatever reason. It can be due to their upbringing, feelings of being overwhelmed all the time, through drug use, and so on.
I wanted to sit with this knowledge the guides gave me and mull it over for a while. I wanted to understand the ways I might have blocked the “Empath feeling” in myself. And with understanding and good hard work, maybe I could revive my own Empath feeling.
About 6 weeks later during another meditation, I was asking the guides how to enhance my healing abilities within myself.
The guides said,
“You need to first connect fully with your body so that it feels like your whole body is breathing with each inhale and exhale. Once you feel that connection, you need to establish the connection with your whole aura. Trust where you feel the outer limit of your aura is. Now breathe in your aura with your physical body and feel the inhale and exhale. Feel the outer edge of your aura going in and out. This is breathing in your whole soul body.”
I then tried as they instructed. I noticed that I could feel a wave of energy moving beneath me. It really felt like a gentle wave on the ocean going back and forth. I was amazed to feel this as I was not expecting to feel it so immediately.
I now do this practice before any client treatments, meditations, and various times throughout the day as needed. I find it really grounds me. I also noticed I am more at peace in my life since I started this. I have found greater clarity in understanding other people, especially family members.
After about a week of practicing the new breathwork, the guides then explained that the people who are Empaths are those living in their aura. Through the breathwork practice, I could understand the importance of being connected to my aura in this way. For Empaths, the aura is like an early radar detector for anything coming at them like other people’s energies or feelings.
For example, think of Earth’s magnetic field as Earth’s aura. We are unable to see the magnetic field with our naked eye, but when a solar flare touches the edge of Earth’s magnetic field, we can see the field through the light display sometimes referred to as polar lights, northern lights (aurora borealis), or southern lights (aurora Australis). This magnetic field stops Earth from being devastated by the solar storms. Earth’s magnetic field is its aura.
Empaths have a radar that stretched out away from their physical bodies. For example, in a house, an empath’s radar can encompass the whole house and even a few houses around them. In an office building, an empath’s energy can expand up to 2 floors above and below them as well. In this way they can feel every person’s emotions and pain in that expanded area (radar). Think of this like an air traffic controller: they can see all the planes coming and going on their radar but they don’t see the airplanes until they start to land. Similarly, an Empath can sense/feel things going on within their radar that stretches out beyond their physical body. Have you noticed that you all of a sudden feel very hungry, even if you just ate a short awhile ago? Scientist tell us that it can take anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes before the brain gets the signal from the stomach that it is full. Question if those feelings of hunger are actually yours or if are are you are picking up someone else’ feeling of hunger? This goes for the other feelings also. Using the breathing exercise below to bring your aura in closer to you until you don’t feel the “feelings” that belong to someone else. This is a good test to see if it’s yours or someone else?
Non-empaths, or those who are not connected with their Empath feelings have a “wall” around them – about 1-2 inches in front of their body. This is why they are slower to “feeling” other people (as in other people’s energies or feelings). But both types of people need to breathe in/out of both their physical and auric bodies as one.
Reflecting in My Own Life
I have done the work on myself to bring peace in my relationships – especially with people who have treated me badly and even abusively. I know I have done the work because there is peace and understanding within me. I can truly feel peace and feel unconditional love.
With one particular person in my life, I have done this work. However, sometime later I noticed I was getting angry with them. (Maybe you can relate to this! The feeling that you have moved beyond something and sometime later, feeling strongly about it all over again.) I knew to embrace my anger, but also question why I was feeling it. This is what I would suggest to anyone experiencing the same thing.
It took me until just the other day to figure out why my anger was coming back. It had to do with the energy of this person – I know they are angry with me and they have chosen not to have a relationship with me or try and work this out. At the same time, I believe in honouring this person’s choice and feelings. In this way this person is still in my life but at a distance. (You may recall I wrote about this in an earlier blog post on Apology and Forgiveness.)
The reason for my recent anger was really about this person’s anger (their thoughts and the energy that was connected to me). This is quite common for empaths: being sensitive to someone else’s anger (or other powerful emotion). I was picking up the energy of the other person.
Today I remembered that when I have thoughts, I know 100% are not from me, then they are coming from the other person. In cases like these, I need to send the energy back to them with light and love. I do not have to accept it, work on it, or own it. I can detach from it and move it out of my radar. This also happens when a person (whether professional or personal) is within arm’s length of you, you are in each other’s Aura (energy).
I advise my friends and clients to trust their gut when they are in close proximity to someone else – to note whether they’re getting good vibes or uncomfortable yucky vibes. Remember: It is always your choice to continue working or talking with a person who is giving you bad vibes/energy. You can always walk away or get a second (or third) opinion from another Empath.
With this experience I forgot momentarily that everything is energy. I am glad I was able to identify what was mine and what was not in this situation.
If this is resonating with you, I invite you to do the same in future situations: reflect, identify, and send back what does not belong to you.
Breathwork Practice to Connect with Your Empath Feelings
I invite you to try this breathwork practice and observe what happens. I want us to reconnect to our full feelings and not be afraid of them. Let us express our feelings and learn from them. Let us feel into our whole soul body (aura and physical body).
Here are the breathwork steps:
- First connect fully with your body so you can feel your whole body breathing with each inhale and exhale.
- Once you feel this connection, establish the connection with your whole aura (outside your physical body). Trust where you feel the outer limit of your aura. You can put your arms out as if you are going into a hug (it will look like your arms are in a semi-circle) and move your arms in (on the exhale) and out (on the inhale).
- Breathe in your aura with your physical body and feel this in the inhale and exhale. Feel the outer edge of your aura going in and out.
- If you feel your aura is to far out, consciously bring it in closer to you with each exhale.
This is breathing in your whole soul body!
Edited by Tracy Wai de Boer