The common notion is that Empaths act the way they do naturally. It just happens without their knowledge, just like the way the neuron system senses things around it. Some people believe that it is in their DNA.
Many people imagine their brain is stimulated or triggered by watching another person doing something and they have very clear visions. This is why they are always quick to jump into action. A few empaths have the so-called “Mirror-Touch” synesthesia. This is a unique and extraordinary occurrence where a person will experience a sense of touch yet it’s someone else who is actually being touched. (Medina and DePasquale, 2017).
Dr. Judith Orloff, M.D., Assistant Clinical Psychiatry Professor at UCLA and author of Empath’s Survival Guide and Second Sight is an empath. For more than 2 decades, she has been studying the natural skills of an empath and the possibility of boosting this special ability.
In the Second Sight book, she narrates about how she had to stop/mask her gift to fit in the medical field. However, in an incident where she could sense a person planning to commit suicide and was able to avert the situation, she decided that she would try to enhance her skill instead of stopping it.
Dr. Orloff says that the flash was pretty strong and clear as if she was the one actually planning to do it. Empath emotions are very finely tuned and clear so that they are able to experience intense feelings. Due to this, they are able to live in harmony with the people around them, build strong relationships, and make other people feel safer.
However, behind this extraordinary skill is the challenge that comes with dealing with it. And the following are the 5 key reasons:
1. Coexistence of positive and negative sides
An empath has to deal with both positive and negative sides at the same time. And usually, either the good or the bad side will overwhelm him/her. It’s been observed that they tend to be more sensitive to negativity.
2. Vulnerability to toxicity
Due to their more sensitivity to the negative aspects, they tend to be more prone to hurt or toxicity. This is because they are always willing to help or show empathy. And because of this as well as being easily carried away by emotions, they tend to take the most hit, or people taking advantage of them.
3. Emotional exhaustion
Empaths will take negativity much better than other people will. They also do not show emotions when they are struggling to cope with the situation. In fact, many will overload themselves because of this and will make their soul, mind, and body tired in the name of helping someone else. Sadly, this usually leads to them being emotionally tired.
4. Inability to fully give over self
Many empaths struggle in relationships and are unable to fully commit themselves to it or their partner. The first reason is that they are carrying so much negativity and still leaving room to take on some more. Secondly, the body and soul will be exhausted hence can give out just a little. Thirdly, they never let out their emotions even when they are torn and this makes it harder for their partner to understand them or reciprocate.
5. Inner conflict
They are always dealing with the good and the bad at the same time. Moreover, most can’t separate their energy and emotions, making the situation more complicated. More often than not, the negative side may win over the positive one. This may lead to lots of emotional distress and self-destruction. The best solution to this is to try and focus more on their feelings rather than emotions.
Carrying an Empaths’ dark side is not only a challenge but also painful. First, they focus so much on other people’s issues and will forget theirs. Second, they allow their mind, soul, and body to get too tired to focus on things like a healthy relationship. Third, the conflict between good and bad usually overwhelms them emotionally. Four, many believe that dealing with other people’s problems is their obligation.
The truth is that an empath needs to concentrate more on self and not other people. It is also important to distinguish between energies and emotions to have better clarity.
Are you an empath and what challenges do you face? Please share your experience with us.