Being an Empath is Awesome…and Totally Sucks

Sometimes you don’t know if what you are feeling belongs to you or to someone else.

I am an empath. What does that mean? It means that I can feel other people’s emotional states. Not just people who are close to me literally or figuratively, but ALL people.

Do you know how you feel your own emotions? That sensation you get in your chest or stomach or head, that inexplicable something? I can feel that from other people around me. In addition to feeling my OWN emotions, I can sense those of other people.

I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, the only one. But for those who do not share this experience, this can seem really out there. Hook-spooky bullshit. Yet it’s real.

Human beings have more than five senses. However, those five are particularly tactile, while the sixth is a mix of a multitude of different energetic things. Yet I believe that all sixth sense abilities, be it empathy, telepathy, mediumship, or any other form of ESP, come from the energetic core that is the foundation of our souls.

Being an empath is one of those sixth sense things. I have the ability to feel other people’s emotional states. This can be pretty awesome…but at the same time, it can totally suck.

Feeling stress and negatives

We live in interesting times, much along the lines of the Chinese curse. That said, many, many, many people are hurting right now. And much of this, on both sides of a given issue, is fear-based and negative. People are angry, scared, hyped-up, ramped-up, worried, concerned, lost, distressed, disturbed, and utterly disbelieving much of what is going on.

Trump’s supporters, for example, buy into the notion that the “liberals” simply have it in for him, and they are angry and incensed about that. Meanwhile, the rest of us are disbelieving the constant stream of bullshit Trump tends to spout, that his party is accepting it, and thus Congress isn’t doing their job to defend the Constitution. So the amount of anger, fear, concern, and disbelief is simply pouring out of people like the exhaust of a big semi-truck in winter.

Even if you are not an empath, chances are you are feeling it. This, in turn, is making people short-tempered, distressed, and uncertain in ways that they simply cannot fathom and may not even realize.

As an empath, I am bombarded by this. Fortunately, years ago I taught myself a trick to not absorb all of the emotions floating in the ethers around me.

Rather than be a human emotional sponge, I am a fine mesh. Thus, other people’s emotions pass through me and I am not grasping ahold of them in the process.

I can turn the mesh into a trap if I desire to read the emotions of another. That can be super useful with the people I care about.

Unfortunately, not all of this emotional outpouring flows like water. Sometimes you get leaves, sticks, and stones. Those still tend to get caught in the mesh. So like it or not, I am feeling those things.

Finding stillness helps

One of the things I do when I am feeling overwhelmed by the world is to work on practicing stillness.

For me, that is meditation.

For the most part, I meditate daily for 15 minutes. During that time I get to sit inside my own head and be one with my own thoughts and feelings.

Meditating tends to keep me within myself. As such, all of those outside emotions are not getting through.

After I meditate, I am grounded and better able to cope with outside emotion. The stillness of meditation allows me to better manage all of that outside noise.

It is called a meditation practice for a reason. I am not perfect at this. More often than not I have to refocus on my breathing because my thoughts and feelings rise up inside my head and pull me out of the moment and the stillness. However, these thoughts and feelings are entirely my own, so that’s less problematic than experiencing the same from other people.

The world is in a constant state of go. Taking time for myself to be still allows me to be calmer and more centered overall. You don’t need to practice meditation to do this, you just need to take as little as five minutes to be still and disconnected from the world.

I highly advise trying this — you’d be amazed how empowering this can be.

The awesome side of being an empath

In a world where basic human kindness tends to be lacking, being an empath allows me to be intentionally kinder. I know how it feels to be a recipient of unkind things, so I know the importance of choosing kindness.

Because I can read people’s emotional states, I can better be attuned to how they need me to approach and address them. This allows me to keep distance when I know it’s needed or to inquire when I can sense they desire someone to talk to and/or share with.

I get to help people, when they let me, to shift their emotions and to share without judgment or having to get into extreme detail, since I already largely know what they’re feeling.

I have been able to do this for most of my life. For a long time, before I knew what to call this, I would tend to keep it to myself. This ability, being an empath, used to scare me. I mean, let’s face it, some people learning that you can read their emotional state effortlessly might feel violated. In no way would I ever want to do that to anyone, since I sure as hell wouldn’t want anyone doing that to me.

Overall, I still keep my own counsel and will not share what I sense unless I can also sense that this would be ok, or I am able to otherwise broach the subject.

I used to be incapable of feeling my own feelings. I knew what they were, but not how they actually felt. This was my modus operandi for years, until an awesome therapist helped me regain the ability to feel them for real. This, in turn, strengthened my empathic sense, both for the good…and not-so-good.

Don’t hide from your feelings

It is a totally human thing to have feelings. Vulcans (like from Star Trek) may exist among us, but they have taken great pains to not be emotional at all. Human nature involves emotions because they are a part of how an individual changes, makes choices, decisions, grows and evolves.

This is especially true when you are working on consciously creating your reality. Choosing to be mindful of what you are thinking and feeling in order to create the life you most desire requires passion.

Passion is an emotion, and it can be a really powerful one.

Bad feelings are not fun. They do not feel pleasant and are generally unwanted. However, they are a part of life, and frankly, without them, you wouldn’t be able to really relish in good feelings.

Don’t be afraid to feel. Let yourself feel, and use that to be as amazing as you have the potential to be. And that is a whole lot of potential.

As an empath, I am constantly feeling emotions. I have hidden from my own, I’ve been there and done that, too. It can be overwhelming to feel so many emotions, in especial those of people outside of myself. But once I came to understand the power of these feelings, and that being an empath opens me up to do more good in the world at large, I began embracing the potential that represents.

Sometimes I don’t know if what I am feeling belongs to me or to someone else. I do my best to work with it and take control of my own feelings to the best of my abilities. As an empath I strive to create and find more kindness and general empathy for the world at large.

You are worthy and deserving of using your mindfulness to find and/or create the reality in which you desire to live. When all is said and done you matter, as do all feelings.

Here are my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better

Written by

I am a practitioner of mindfulness, positivity, philosophy, & conscious reality creation. I love to inspire, open minds, & entertain.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store