So what is an empath?
Being an empath is when you are affected by other people's energies and vibrations, but it's also having a natural ability to feel and perceive others intuitively. Being an empath is much more than being highly sensitive, and it's not just limited to emotions.
Empaths can perceive physical sensitivities, as well as just knowing the motivations and intentions of other people. Empaths know when someone is lying or not, they just know. How people speak, tone of voice, use of words, what they don't say, body language, shifts in energy and vibrations are all picked up by an empath.
You either are an empath, or you aren't
It's not a trait that is learned. An empath is always open, so to speak, to process other people's feelings and energy, which means that you really feel, and in many cases take on the emotions of others. It can be confusing for an empath when differentiating between theirs and another person's emotions.
Many empaths experience things like chronic fatigue, environmental sensitivities, or unexplained aches and pains daily. These are all things that are more likely to be contributed to outside influences and not so much yourself at all. Essentially you are walking around in this world with all of the accumulated karma, emotions, and energy from others.
Empaths need and crave solitude and quiet time away from everyday life. Empaths need this time to recharge their batteries after taking on so much.
Being an empath doesn't just mean having a lot of compassion
In many ways, empaths don't have the normal filters other people do. They take in a lot of what's going on around them. They're very sensitive to noise, smell, and excessive talking. This means they are easily overwhelmed in crowds and can be exhausted after just short periods of time in social situations.
To find out if you truly are an empath, here are some traits of an empath:
Empaths just know stuff, without being told. It's a knowing that goes way beyond intuition or gut feelings, even though that is how many would describe the knowing. The more attuned they are, the stronger this gift becomes. This is also known as Claircognizance.
2. You can tell when you are being told a lie almost immediately:
If a family member or a close friend is telling you lies, you just know it (although a lot of empaths try not to focus too much on this because knowing a loved one is lying can be a painful thing to learn). Maybe you are in the situation of someone saying one thing but thinking/feeling something completely different, an empath just knows.
3. Being in public places can be overwhelming:
Places like supermarkets, stadiums, concerts, malls, fairgrounds, the movies, anywhere where there are loads of people around, can fill the empath with an overwhelming sense of emotions coming at them from all directions. Being around so many people leave an empath no room to breathe or to even focus on trying to work out one emotion from another.
4. Feeling others emotions and taking them on as your own:
This is a huge one for empaths. To some, they will feel emotions of those nearby and with others, they will feel emotions from those a vast distance away, or both. The more adept empath will know if someone is having bad thoughts about them, even from a great distance.
5. Taking on physical symptoms of another:
An empath will almost always develop the ailments of another person (colds, infections, headaches, muscle strain, body aches, and pains to name just a few) especially those they're closest to, it's sort of like going out in sympathy for another.
6. Negativity can be overwhelming:
Where others can tolerate raised voices, conflict, or anger, it sends you over the edge. You almost feel physically sick or in pain as a result of the negative energy around you. You crave peace and calmness.
7. Strong intuition:
You seem to know things without being told. You sense what needs to be done or what's about to happen. Your gut feelings nearly always prove to be correct.
8. Always looking out for others:
Anyone who's suffering, feels in need of a lift, are in emotional pain or experience bullying in any form draws an empath's attention and compassion almost immediately. They simply can't help themselves when they see or feel someone in need.
9. Others will want to offload their problems on you, even strangers:
An empath can become a dumping ground for everyone else's issues and problems, which, if they're not careful can end up as their own.
10. The need for solitude:
An empath will get aggravated if they don't get their quiet time. This is even obvious in empathic children. Empaths need that space to bring balance to themselves, to be in just their OWN energy for a change and to recharge their batteries.
11. An empath is sensitive to sounds and sensory feeling:
Loud noises or sudden dramatic movements can startle you. Bright lights, certain types of fabric and strong smells can be overwhelming.
12. They feel the day:
Empaths can almost feel what day of the week it is. Each day has a specific "feel" to it.
13. Finds routine, rules or control claustrophobic and will fight against it:
Anything that takes away an empath's sense of freedom is extremely debilitating and can even have a poisoning effect on the moods of the imprisoned empath.
14. Empaths are always looking for the answers and the knowledge to back it up:
To have unanswered questions can be frustrating to an empath. The downside to this is an information overload and the possibility of endless hours of research — if to do nothing else but find peace of mind.
15. An empath always strives for the truth:
This becomes more prevalent when an empath discovers his/her gifts and birthright. Anything untruthful feels plain wrong to them.
If you can say yes to most or all of the above, then you are most definitely an empath.