The positive aspects of being highly sensitive and an intuitive empath
I work with many clients who are highly sensitive or/and are intuitive empaths. A common challenge to these clients is the fact that they are different. They often ask themselves: ‘Why can’t I be like everyone else I know?’
In this blog, I am focusing on the wonderful things one can experience in life, when one is a highly sensitive or/and empath.
Here you can read about empaths and empathy, what it is, how you recognize whether you are an empath, and also, the most important skills for grounding, centering and protecting yourself.
I will mention which kind of problems empath clients are contacting me with and how I start my work with you, when you contact me with issues connected to empaths and high sensitivity. You can read more about my work with empath clients, and with highly sensitive persons here on my web site.
A number of books have been written about high sensitivity and empaths. The theory, courses and books, I follow in my clinical practice are built on the work of Dr. Judith Orloff, who has a great insight in everything related to empaths. Dr. Orloff has already achieved many positive changes in the way professionals now view and understand symptoms caused by sensory overwhelm of empath clients and patients. The following information is based on Dr. Judith Orloff’s courses and her last book, called Life Strategies for sensitive people, which I highly recommend.
Empathy and empaths
Intuitive empathy, is the ability to sense energy from other people to the extent that you absorb it in your body, making you an ’energy sponge’.
While with training and awareness every person can sense the subtle energy of others, NOT everyone is an intuitive empath. It is therefore very important that you find out if YOU are an intuitive empath, so you can learn to sense subtle energies, but also get tools to not absorbing them.
Once you learn how to sense your own body’s subtle energy, you may be able to notice, how the energy of other people affects you.
What is the difference between having empathy and being an empath?
Having empathy means our hearts reach out to another person in pain or in joy. But for empaths it goes much further. Since we don’t have the usual filters that most people have, we feel others’ emotions and physical sensations in our own bodies.
Empaths are emotional sponges who tend to absorb the stress (and also positive energy) of the people around them and the world—so they may suffer exhaustion, anxiety, addictions, depression, and more.
The current stress level across the globe, as well as the continuous information overload, makes us all feel overwhelmed.
Even the non-empaths are becoming empaths because their ordinary defenses are getting worn down!
The secret to being an empowered empath is to learn to ground, center and protect ourselves. Then you will become more resilient and able to face life’s challenges without experiencing sensory overload.
Empaths have an extremely sensitive neurological system. We don’t have the same filters that other people have to block out stimulation. Therefore, we absorb into our own bodies both the positive and stressful energies around us. We are so sensitive it is like holding something in a hand which has fifty fingers instead of five. We are truly super-responders.
The great gift of being an empath
Empaths have marvellous traits.
We have huge hearts and the instinct to help others who are in need or who are less fortunate.
We are dreamers and idealists.
We are also passionate, deep, in touch with our emotions, and compassionate.
We are intuitive, spiritual, and can sense energy.
We have a special appreciation for nature and feel at home there.
The challenges of being an empath
But empaths also have special challenges.
We can experience sensory overload and absorb the stress and negativity of others.
We feel things intensely, and can experience emotional hangovers and burnout.
We may also feel lonely and isolated.
An empath’s body is different from other people’s bodies. We feel everything. Our bodies are so porous that we absorb both the positive and negative energies around us. This can affect our health in very important ways. On the positive side, we can sense another person’s vitality. We can also feel the physical discomfort, stress, and negative emotions of others, even when they are unspoken of—including their frustration, anger, and fear. As empaths, we can feel tired and sick when we are around toxic people, noise, violence, rushing, or yelling.
How does one become an empath?
Most empaths are born with this wonderful gift of high sensitivity. Others become empaths as a result of life events as trauma, crisis, situations in the early years, when they needed to develop special skills and special awareness in order to adapt (or survive) challenging situations. Also, physical illness can make us empaths.
Are you an intuitive empath? Take the test
- Have I been described as overly sensitive?
- Am I easily stimulated and overwhelmed?
- If a friend or a person close to me is distraught or in physical pain, do I start feeling it, too?
- Am I drained in clouds, going out of my way to avoid them?
- Do I get anxious in packed elevators, airplanes, or subways?
- Am I super-sensitive to noise, light, scents, or excessive talking?
- When I see a grim newscast, do my energy plummet?
- Do I get burned out by groups and require a lot of energy to revive myself?
- When I am around negative people, do I run to the refrigerator to overeat?
Three tools to build up a balanced daily life
Following are three great tools you can use on a daily basis in order to protect your energy level, improve self-esteem and self-confidence, and built up a balanced and happy everyday life.
The Grounding and Earthing Visualization
In a quiet space, visualize a large tree with a strong trunk that extends down the center of your body from head to toes. Visualize the tree’s roots growing from the bottom of your feet, making their way deep into the earth, providing a comforting sense of solidity. Take a few moments to feel this power and grounding energy.
The Three-Minute Heart Meditation
Close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths and relax. Then place your palm over your heart chakra in the middle of your chest. Focus on a beautiful image you love such as a sunset, a rose, the ocean, or a child’s face. Feel the love building in your heart and body. Let this loving feeling soothe and refresh you. Toxic energy leaves your body as you are purified with love.
Shield Yourself at Work
In stressful work situations—or if you’re picking up a coworker’s energy and emotions—picture a shield of white light all around you that protects you and allows in only what is positive. This strategy ensures that you don’t absorb your clients’ or coworkers’ stress.
Source: Dr. Judith Orloff, ‘Empath’s surviving guide, Life strategies to Sensitive people’
Problems and issues, my empath or highly sensitive clients can contact me with
In my clinical practice, I work daily with empaths and clients with high sensitivity.
Some of the clients already know they are highly sensitive or empaths and ask for help regarding personalized skills in order to improve their life quality.
Others contact me as result of a very challenging relationship with themselves, anxiety, stress, depression symptoms, and a general feeling of overwhelm.
Some clients are not aware of their own sensitivity levels. They contact me with stress, or depression symptoms. Very often clients experience physical pain, where health tests fail to show any result, and they are sent to a psychologist to find the emotional source for the pain.
Other empath clients have problems with negative coping mechanisms as drinking, eating disorders, overeating, OCD as result of the emotional pain (and constant thinking) they carry around and they miss the feeling of inner peace.
Problems at work, with friends, within the family and relationships, can also often be caused by the fact that the client is an empath or has high sensitivity.
The work with all these clients is centered around :
- skills to set boundaries with others,
- tools to stop absorbing the energy and emotions of others,
- understanding and respecting themselves and what they need individually : clients learn to stop comparing themselves with others. ). And, the most important part, they learn to understand and to value their own resources and skills.
With all my best regards,
A little step can help on the path to a brighter future...
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