The dictionary describes an empath as “one who experiences the emotions of others”. Not just feeling empathy towards someone’s pain, but literally experiencing that pain as if it were your own, that is being an empath. This is just one of the many signs, there are several indicators, according to Dr. Judith Orloff best-selling author of The Empath’s Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People, to see if you tend to fall on the empath side of the spectrum.
You absorb the emotions of others
Yes, this is the most well-known marker of an empath. People who are empaths are so high attuned to other people’s moods, good or bad. If an empath is surrounded by negativity, they will take on negative emotions. Conversely, if an empath is surrounded by positive emotions, like love, they will flourish.
You are highly sensitive and intuitive
Empaths are naturally very good listeners when it comes to other people and their problems. Empathic people are also natural nurturers, always there to drop everything and be there for one of their friends in a moment of need.
You are giving- sometimes too giving
Empaths are especially big-hearted people that try to relieve the pain of others. As an empath, you can’t walk past someone in need without stopping to help them. Sometimes when you help other people so much, you lose yourself in the process.
It can be challenging and draining being there for everyone all the time like The Giving Tree just giving and giving until there is nothing left for yourself.
Reclaim that energy by:
Putting yourself first
This concept is simple at face value but can be hard for an empath who is always putting the needs of others before his or her own. Take time to make yourself a priority for a bit.
Set boundaries with others
#ProtectYour Energy There is only so much room in your head for thoughts and emotions. It’s okay to limit the amount of time you spend being an ear to listen to people’s problems or a shoulder to lean on.]
A native of Washington, D.C., Leah Forman is a communications student at The University of Tampa. When she’s not behind a computer, you can find Leah hanging out with her friends, hitting the gym and going to mall. Leah loves the big city life and plans to move to New York City when she graduates. Future Carrie Bradshaw? We’ll see!