By Judith E. Lipson, M.A., LPC
The more I understand about empaths, the more I learn concepts that I had never considered. Please read to the end for the newest information.
Empaths experience more than empathy. Empaths not only care about the others’ feelings, but also feel the other’s physical sensations and/or emotions in their own being. It’s a wonderful gift and is especially prominent in those who serve in the healing professions; yet this gift is often accompanied by the challenges that can arise when one feels deeply, intensely and expansively.
Unfortunately our society doesn’t talk about it (thereby normalizing it), nor do we teach our children to understand, accept and foster this gift, thus minimizing potential challenges.
How I have approached the challenges:
- Cognitively: It is not your role to take in the fullness of another’s experience so that they may be spared their own distress. As a healer (medical, spiritual, or even as a friend), you only need enough information to know what the individual experiences in order to direct them, or your healing modality, to their healing. For this to happen, you only need a little information. Think filling a thimble instead of a bathtub.
- Energetically: Now that you understand ‘why’ you needn’t bring it all in to you, it is often important to know how to modulate the entry. I use the visual model of the whale or dolphin’s blowhole, which opens after coming to the surface of the water, and closes before diving again. Since it is most likely that you access others’ energetic information at your gut, close your eyes and try to identify the size of your own ‘blowhole’. Then try closing it a bit, and opening it again. Just play with the idea and use your imagination. See how you feel when you are more open, and see if you feel differently when it’s more closed. Play with the concept and see what size works best for you, in this moment. Please note that some folks like a different concept for modulating their energy intake. Consider a screen/weave, or a color that is translucent (pink) to opaque (red). I have also had kids and adults choose ocean waves, firewalls (computer security concept), selectively permeable membranes (biology – cell membrane), force fields (Star Trek), and other ideas. Find what works for you.
During the last year, I have had clients (a couple adults, and even a 7 year old) who felt certain that it is their job to take others’ discomforts. They were not deterred by the teachings described above. So we took the following approach:
- If it is indeed your role to be the receptacle, must you KEEP their stuff for them? As these individuals acknowledged, from their own intuitive knowing, that they are to be the receptacle, but not maintain the input, they have used guided imagery to remove from their own system what has already accumulated. They instantly felt better.
- Can you create a way where you remain the receptacle, helping others to release, but then set a ‘drain’ within you for continual release from your own energy field? All of this is done with intention and imagination. See what resonates for you as you acknowledge your ‘receptacle’ and ‘drain’. The technique(s) that you develop today might change in the near or distant future.
Recently, I have been learning about energy frequencies and vibrations. It only partially reflects the procedures and explanations that I have previously taught about energy modulation. It is raw, and there is more for me to learn, but I’ll share it with you now:
When information is shared, received and interpreted, all at the level of frequency, there is less chance for misunderstanding (every stage of transmutation risks altering the message). [Read more…]