Are Empaths Real? 6 Empath Qualities That Can Negatively Affect Your Quality of Life (if you’re not careful)

This means you may find yourself getting emotionally attached very early in a relationship, and as many empaths are also givers, you may find yourself feeling taken advantage of or easily hurt, especially in new relationships.

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Q:  Are empaths real?  I read that “empaths” are really a mythical or fictional personality type.  How can I tell if i’m just overly sensitive, or a genuine empath?

A:  The answer to this is both easy, and complex.  While empaths are definitely “real” in the sense that we are people who feel things differently than the vast majority of the population there is also MUCH myth and self aggrandizing misinformation out there about what makes an empath.(note – a recent scientific study suggests that about 1% of the population are able to “Feel the interior experiences of others” and have super strong empathic “powers” – you can read that study here)

The problem with lots of “empath” articles and insights?  They tend to err on the side of self aggrandizement.  They tend to offer up ego inflation and elevating advice that may make you feel “special” or like a superhero, they are rarely helpful in terms of offering up advice you can actually use in your life.

(no – empaths don’t “know everything” and aren’t super special magical beings like some articles would like to have us believe.  WE DO, however, have access to deeper levels of emotional connection to people, places and things and quite often, these deeper levels of sensitivity can lead to profound spiritually transformative experiences as well)

Some NOT so great side effects of being an empath?

  1. You may be more sensitive to what people think about you.  (you may be a bit of a pleaser….as you don’t want to feel the depth of the disappointment that others may feel if you don’t conform to their wishes, which can lead many empaths to toxic relationships)
  2. You may find yourself overthinking EVERYTHING and being lost in thought, and loops of rumination.
  3. You may find it harder to heal from traumas, and forgive slights or conflicts that others have moved past already.
  4. You LOVE fiercely, quickly and passionately.  This means you may find yourself getting emotionally attached very early in a relationship, and as many empaths are also givers, you may find yourself feeling taken advantage of or easily hurt, especially in new relationships.
  5. You may find current events overwhelming.  The news makes you more than sad – it hurts your heart in ways that others may find odd or offputting.
  6. You are an activist – EVEN if it’s just in your head and heart.  Nothing offends you more than injustice and even if you are an introvert, your spirit speaks up for those who have less, or who are oppressed.  (and in 2020 – with the world being such a friggin MESS, it’s no surprise that so many NEW empaths are raising their hands and being counted in our community)

 

What about you? Do you find that being spiritually sensitive is a liability? With so many “empaths” touting the advantage of having spiritual “superpowers” or the ability to hone in on the emotional energies of others, there needs to be a fair hearing for what many of us find to be challenging about our unique “gifts” as well. Yes, it’s true…..there is much to love about living in our HEARTS rather in our heads (like most folks do) but hearts hurt, too 🙁 If this resonates with you, share your thoughts in the community comments below.


Empaths Only: A crash course in magic, mindfulness meditation and spiritual transformation for helpers, healers, light-workers and spiritually sensitive people

12 comments
  1. I’m still trying to figure out if I am an empath. This article is a strong description of who I am. I’ve always felt like I don’t belong to this world and that no one understands me. Being an empath feels more like a curse to me than anything else. Thank you for your article.

  2. For so long, even from childhood, I did not understand why I could feel the emotions of others in such a deep way. I have always been introverted, an observer, intuitive about situations that I could feel but not understand. It has made me vulnerable in personal relationships, a victim sometimes and I have finally realized I believe I have PTSD because I have put others before myself and experienced abuse, physical, emotional and mental, as a result. This article was helpful for me in so many ways. Thank you.

  3. I disagree with #2… I feel as a strongly empathetic person that I can easily set aside my own misgivings. I can feel and experience why the person that mistreated me or wronged me in any way would have done it. I tend to feel bad for them and seek understanding for why they make bad choices. I don’t always agree but I get it and hold no grudges.

  4. I have known aboit being an empath for well over 20 years. However. I am still discovering new things that I sometimes struggle to understand. I recently did exercises with my third eye, opening myself up more. I stayed negative and distant, as well as irritable and occasionally even angry for several days after. And today I started experiencing physical pain in my abdomen. I’m not certain how normal this is for an empath.

  5. This is so spot on for me personally. Living in todays reality is very difficult but if you feel it on every layer…., it’s an entirely different hurt.

  6. Is it normal for a empath to have chronic migraines. Also how can I block out all the different negativity . Do empaths also have the ability to heal?

  7. I have the chills, because everything you just stated in this article is me to the t . Thank you so much for the reality of what it’s like to be an empath. I never knew I was for a long time. I was a scared child and felt strong emotions. Especially in school since 4th grade I felt the judgement of others hated the front row and felt there stairs. And more…..

    1. I’ve known for a very long time , I was different from others. I’m like a open wound that when I’m around ANYONE I feel there energies like air to my wound,…I can tell if there confused, happy, sad, I can tell if there holding anything inside even though there smile’s.. I be been hurt a 100 times over for being a pleaser and I juat want everyone to be happy and at peace,which alot of times causes me grief n pain…but I’m learning and loving the same as I did yesterday an will continue to do so..thanks for your article I’ll definitely be reading more..thanks. Angela Hixon

      1. thanks so much for sharing your experience as an empath, Angela – you captured the essence of how many feel so eloquently – we appreciate it!

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