Saturday, February 6, 2010
I'm wondering. Anybody here an empath or know something about empaths? The reason I am asking is because I really never paid much attention. I actually didn't even know what am empath was until yesterday. You all know that I had been going through some stuff, but my rant I had left some things out. I was actually going through a rougher time than I had let on. As a matter of fact, there have been times lately that I felt as if I was about to jump out of my skin, and, frankly, I was downright scared. Thought maybe I was headed toward some type of breakdown. But the odd thing about it was how these feelings and moods would come and go.
So, when I was about to leave work yesterday, my co-worker called me into her office and told me she was really feeling for me. (I am blessed to have a couple co-workers who believe and pratice the mystical side of life). I thought she meant all the work that had piled on me, but then she continued, "You're an empath, and I don't know how you've gone this far without your breaking down like this." Then, she went on to explain that we are all born as an empath, but most people completely shut down their skills or learn to ignore feelings they are picking up from other people. An empath is one who picks up on the feelings and emotions of those around them. Then, she explained that there are others, like me, who are called "Impaired empaths". These are those empaths who, although they have shown the basic skills, can easily become overwhelmed. There is also the functional empath who is able to control the flow of information so that it does not become overwhelming. Then, she referred me to an online group which I joined.
There are series of questions which will tell one whether or not they are an empath.
For example, "Do you feel anxious or nervous in a crowd? Does your energy seem to change? Do you feel anxious or wired?" Let me tell you, I've been like that for years. All I have to do is walk into a store with a lot of shoppers and I begin to feel so wired that I can't wait to get out of there. I become so anxious that I begin to cry. Many a time I have walked out of our neighborhood Shoprite with tears rolling down my cheeks. This is why I prefer our little uncrowded Met Food.
Does your mood seem to vary at random for no reason? (angry, sad, scared) All the time...since I was a teen-ager. I can be feeling really good, and then suddenly, for no reason, have a drop in my emotions. I also take on my clients feelings in group and individual sessions and find myself crying right along with them.
Do you have a hard time falling asleep before midnight or do you procrastinate about going to bed? I can climb into bed at 10 pm and not fall asleep until 1 pm, and this occurs night after night for as long as I can remember.
Do people find it easy to confide in you? Perfect strangers come up to me and tell me personal things about their lives. Never quite understood why. I actually used to joke about being a magnet.
Do you have physical symptoms that relate to your hearing? (popping, itching, ringing, or other symptoms in your ear canal) My ears are always popping and have recently started itching for no reason.
Are you a good listener? Do people seem to intuitively know that you will understand them, empathize with them, and offer them moral and emotional support? I hear this all the time from my clients It is now at the point that word has gotten around that "I am good" and clients will request me. The receptionist told me that some guy came in to schedule and intake...and his friend, who was a client told him, "Ask for Mary. Tell them you don't want anyone else."
Do you feel emotionally uncomfortable or anxious when having sex...or do you have no sex drive?
That's me. Never really understood why.
There were many other questions, too...like intuitively being able to tell whether and individual will be friend or foe. Back in the day when I worked evenings for an answering service, we were a group of ladies who had a great time. Sure, we would read, knit, have a beer or two, but we did our work. Then they hired someone who was sweet as molasses. "Oh, I'll go to the store for you. I'll do your filing." That kind of stuff. All of my co-workers loved her, but I was the odd man out. I didn't like her and didn't trust...and warned them...but no one would listen. Turns out she couldn't do the job and was really messing up so the boss had to fire her. But do you know before this gal left, she told the boss all the stuff we did at night?
Another question was about television shows, commercials and are some of them hard for me to watch. Definitely. But, that goes without saying. I'm sure most of us feel emotions with sad movies and such. The difference is, empaths pick up feelings and emotions like a sponge and tend to do so because they are ungrounded. Here are a few other things to take note of. You might be an empath if:
You can't bear loud noises; they go right through you. That's me. Others just don't understand why I am always asking them to turn the music down. At work sometimes, I will hear someone's car radio or the rumbling of a truck's motor, and I have to cover my ears.
You hate parties/nightclubs/crowds. Definitely. I really feel uncomfortable and usually find some corner to hide in and count the minutes until I can get out of there.
You take on the guilt of others and their actions. That's me to a tee. When one of my co-workers does something inappropriate, I often feel as if I had done the dastardly deed.
You are always sensitive to how others may feel. Yes. Just look at how many times I apologize for a rant. LOL!!!
Can't say no to others. That was me for so many years. Still is to some degree.
Put on a brave face, but feel tortured by their feelings. Definitely, to the point of suffering tension headaches, fatigue, and general malaise.
So, I took the 6 page test and got very high scores. Still learning. Still no sure. That's why I'm reaching out for answers. Would love to hear from others.