A question that often comes up on my blog, and on Facebook, is how to better explain to others who we are as Empaths. Although I have written about the subject in the past, I feel it’s a good time to revisit the topic because it can be such a frustrating part of Empath life.
When we awaken to our Empath ways everything we’ve experienced emotionally and physically, when around people, finally makes sense. We understand our need for time alone, why we feel such crazy energy when in busy places, and why we experience such overpowering emotions when with certain people. We come to accept our ‘inner knowing’ as the incredible guiding force it is and stop fighting or ignoring the intuition that comes with it.
We often become so excited by our newfound knowledge that we want to tell the world. We have an explanation for all the inexplicable things we’ve experienced, throughout life, and we now know we are not the only ones. However, we quickly come to discover that discussing the ways of an Empath is no easy feat. Learning who we are, it would seem, was the easy part of the journey.
Oh, we may try to explain what we now know about our traits to others. The reasoning behind our Empath ways is so simple, why wouldn’t anyone else understand? But when we try to describe ourselves it doesn’t always go the way we hoped. And when we see others struggling to comprehend our explanations it causes us more frustration. We may then try to overexplain ourselves, struggling to find the key words to convince the other of our validity. Yet the more details we give the more discouraged we become. Sadly, the reason people don’t hear is not just because they don’t understand but because, too often, their ears are closed to the subject.
Although we like to believe we live in a world of free speech, opinion and thought it is clearly not the case (although, I believe it is changing for the better. Tends to get worse before better). We regularly see those who don’t follow the herd, or agree with the majority, attacked or ridiculed. So, it is hardly surprising some Empaths fear talking openly about who they are. People can be very closed-minded as well as fearful of acknowledging the minority. And it doesn’t help that the greatest prisons we live in is the fear of what others think of us. (Read why Empaths are hurt by criticism here).
If you’ve been an awakened Empath for some years you will no doubt already know that explaining to others, about who we are and what we feel, can be a gruesomely tricky area. Most Empaths quickly come to realize that the subject of being ‘Sensitive’ to energy and the emotions of others is just too ‘out there’ for some to consider.
The distinct lack of interest, shown by those closest to us, may come as a surprise to the newly awakened Empath. But the longer you walk this weird and wonderful path the more sense it makes. For one thing, we often do not know our friends as well as we’d like to think we do. And just because we are ready to accept who we are does not mean they are.
Although it may be difficult to admit, not all friends, or family members, have our best interests at heart. Everyone has faces they show the world and in friendships it is no different. Some friends cover up unpleasant traits, for their own reasons, but when faced with certain revelations—perhaps when we explain ourself as an Empath—their true colours are often shown. Even if they don’t verbalise their dismay, at our disclosures, we always sense a lack of acceptance or a quiet rejection, even at it’s most subtle.
You may even feel like the other is making your feel belittled or ashamed for your revelation. In some cases, this could be due to a superiority complex. If your admission, of being an Empath, makes you seem in any way ‘special’, some may feel the need to take you down a peg or two. It is a well-known fact that friends or family can be prone to the green-eyed monster and, when this is the case, they tend to knock you down rather than embrace your new discovery. Often being unaware of the damage they are causing.
Looking at things from another perspective, we also have to consider that some people find it difficult to believe what they don’t understand or experience for themselves. But alas, this doesn’t help the Empath embrace who they are.
Not being able to talk, openly and truthfully, about who we are can feel isolating. So how do we determine who we can reveal ourself to and those with whom we are best to stay quiet?
The best ways I have found to discern who is open or not, is simply by tuning into one’s own awareness/intuition, as well as asking some easy trigger questions. It serves the Empath no end to be able to rely on their inner knowing for assessing life’s situations and not only from the perspective of knowing who we can talk openly with.
These days we are given so much contradictory information about everything, from health to world affairs, that we truly need to depend on our gut instinct for dependable answers. Reliable intuition/awareness serves the Empath (and everyone else) no end in navigating the rigours of life. It is something everyone can develop. Not only is intuition a perfect tool for making the right decisions but it also helps us better understand others. (Click here for a quick post on ways to develop Empath intuition).
So, what are the questions to ask when determining whether a dialogue can be opened, regarding the ways of an Empath? One of the easiest trigger questions to ask is: ‘Do you ever find that some people drain your energy?’ Generally, with this type of question, if people have experienced an ‘energy vampire’ they become quite vocal about it. Which not only gives you an idea of how open to the concept of energy they are, but it can also open a doorway into explaining how people’s energy affects you.
Another good question to ask is: what is their opinion on alternative healing or the ability of psychics? I realize this has nothing to do with the topic of Empathy, but their response will give you an indication of how open they are in general to the concept of the ‘unusual’. Those who are open tend to get excited and relay any experience they may have had, and they are often open to hearing about the ways of an Empath.
However, if there is little response or if they look bewildered by your questions you are probably as well changing the subject (unless you want to have a strained one-sided conversation.) Those who aren’t interested generally give a one-word answer. If you try to explain yourself to them, you generally end up feeling worse for doing it.
If you know it’s important to express yourself to another, as an Empath, but don’t know how to do it verbally, you could always show them. What I mean by this is to show them posts, articles or YouTube clips containing information about Empaths (some respond better to ‘proof’). The 30 Traits of an Empath is a good starting place. Just simple snippets that briefly outline the Empath. It is also a good way to plant seeds.
I must admit that I rarely talk about my Empath ways to others. And when I do it’s only to those I know who are already open or if I feel they will benefit from the knowledge.
I used to believe that if I could get another to see what it was I experienced and what I knew or felt, they would automatically get it… but that proved not to be the case. People only see and hear what they want to or are ready for. Also, over the years I came to understand that people do not always want to know that another can sense their hidden pain.
If someone works hard to mask their sorrows or insecurities it can destroy them to know someone can see through their veils of illusion (as an Empath can without even trying). When walls are built around hidden pain it is always for a reason, and no one wants someone else to disassemble ‘their wall’ before they are ready to do it themselves. It can feel like an uninvited intrusion of their privacy. So even if you confront someone who is masking deep anguish, don’t be surprised if they deny the fact and try to mock you for your suggestion.
No matter how much you feel you could help another, if they are not ready to hear, you will not get them on your side or get them to embrace who you are as an Empath.
So, to close, when expressing yourself choose your subjects wisely and don’t waste your energy trying to convert the inconvertible. Many Empaths come to discover that life is generally easier when we stop trying to explain ourself to others. Getting to really know yourself, and your purpose, is more important than getting another to understand who you are.
So, there you go I hope this gives you some food for thought and I hope it will make your Empath journey a little easier.
Until next time…