Empathy is an ability to put ourselves in another person’s shoes and feel their experience as ours. We are all connected and empathy gives us first-hand experience of that connection.

Some empaths find themselves incredibly sensitive to the pain of others so they avoid busy places and they choose not to visit difficult relatives and are picky about friendships. One of the ways to know if you’re an empath is to honestly answer these questions:

Do you feel others pain deeply?
Does the thought of a friend’s difficult circumstances stop you from doing what you want to do?
Do you find yourself eating your words in order to keep the peace?
Do you often find yourself counseling others?
Dating people with addictions? Drugs? Alcohol? Regret? Perfection? (yes, these can be an addiction too.)
Do you avoid painful conversations because of another person’s reaction?
Does the idea of going into public make you cringe?
Do you become physically ill when someone is harsh or ill themselves?

You’re probably nodding your head right now if you’re an empath and saying, ‘Yep, that’s me’ ‘Ugh.’ lol

It’s important you know why you are empathic and what is expected of you. First off, let’s get something straight. Unfortunately, neither you nor I were handed a special sensitivity from God. In other words, God didn’t look down and say, ‘Here you go!’ to some and then ignore others. So there is no ‘weight’ of responsibility with our abilities except that which we choose. In other words, we are not responsible to enlighten (or fix) others because of our sensitivity.

You have a valuable knowing that originates from within and expresses itself through you consciously or unconsciously. Those of us with strong sensitivities have been interested in spirituality & served in similar situations in other lifetimes so it comes more naturally. However, it doesn’t make us more evolved. Psychic gifts are no greater or less than the abilities of a Carpenter, Cook, Teacher, Mother, Artist, Bus Driver, etc. It’s how much awareness and love we are giving to our life that makes a spiritually mature person. The only difference between an empath and someone lacking sensitivity is that our self-care maintenance is different. We are innately aware of the importance of high vibes and higher consciousness; what we are putting out there and what we are taking in. The problem starts when our need for high vibes and peace conflicts with the realities of life and we stop feeling equipped to meet the challenges of life, with confidence.

Here is what you need to know to stay healthy and happy as an Empath:

#1. You cannot sacrifice your truth to please another- in life or on social media. Each person is a sovereign being and free to choose their reactions as well as their attitude toward life. We all have to work with what we’ve got and there is always someone worse off and better off than us.

#2. Feeling sorry for someone doesn’t help them, it feeds a negative pattern of helplessness for everyone involved. Go back to the #1 and re-read.

#3. Our minds need to be trained how to think. Don’t expect your mind to have the right answers. After all, you only know what you’ve been taught. Unfortunately, a lot of what we’ve learned is rehashed and has never been tested to see if it’s true or helpful. Exercise- Take one affirmation per week and say it over and over and over again, giving energy to the thought. Do this for one month with four different affirmations and you will notice small changes in yourself and how you think.

#4. It’s a blessing to feel! How wonderful that we can feel another’s pain and want them to experience the beauty of who they are. However, we aren’t the healer. We won’t change someone’s life most of the time and the odd time without meaning to, someone will be changed because of us.

#5. Honor your need for solitude and peace. Just don’t let it isolate you or make you judgemental, anxious or full of distrust for others. See a counselor, therapist, mentor to work out your mental & spiritual kinks.

#6. Express your empathy. People need healing words, empower them with your empathy by relating to them in the moment. Feel the incredible joy of being connected without judgment. Don’t try to teach, push or change them. Just be there and be you.

#7. Choose relationships & friendships based on your values and not on your need to be needed or loved.

#8. The source of all energy is moving through you and showing you the answers to your deepest questions. Connect through meditation, prayer, intention, walking in nature, whole foods, spiritual study, less TV & social media. Silence makes space for inspiration.

As you can see Empathy is like a two-sided coin. We can’t ignore the immense growth that comes with being empathic. It will move us out of our comfort zone, cause us suffering, create connection and heart-breaking joy because we are alive! We can see it as a blessing an take care of ourselves better.

Shana Lee x

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