Thursday, 12 September 2019

It's OK to Put Yourself First - Even if You're an Empath

My empath ways have somewhat become very tedious within the past year.

They say an empath can easily pick up on other people's emotions, I drown in them. So much so, I refuse to surround myself with negative people because I instantly drop my good mood and unknowingly sympathise with their despair through my own emotions. It's insane to say the least, especially when the guilt of blocking out those people 'in need' attacks me.

This entire blog is based on looking out for people, being kind and giving love and support to those who need it. But, as I have grown stronger this year, I seem to have built a wall around my heart - not allowing those who do not deserve my respect anywhere near my empathetic mind.

It's a beautiful thing to want to be a good person - it's nice to put others first. But, it's even greater to put yourself and your own needs first - be a little selfish from time to time. I am slowly but surely learning that my own thoughts and feelings should be respected before I allow anyone else to absorb the empathy out of me.

I didn't even know what an empath was until I was told I was one. I realised I was one when I read that they 'filter the world through their intuition and have a difficult time intellectualising their feelings.'

There are many key traits that make an empath, but here are some of mine I am trying to overcome:

Incredibly sensitive

There is nothing wrong with being a little sensitive - I know what banter is and I know what it is not, but sometimes my sensitivity can cloud my judgement. People who are naturally empathetic quickly pick up even the slightest change in others energies. I will over analyse the way people speak to me one day and how they act the next and wonder what I have done wrong. Even though I know I haven't done anything. Empaths can “feel into” other people and have the ability to deeply understand their emotions, motivations, and feelings.

Instant intimate connections

I am very good at connecting with others - I make friends easily and I'm pretty confident in saying that you could put me in a room full of strangers and I will create relationships with at least a few of them. At the same time, a lot of people could probably say that I am 'too much'. Sometimes I can connect with people too quickly and intensely, and those people may not be able to keep up the pace. Resulting in me seeming overbearing or like I said, too much. 

Forgiveness comes naturally

A lot of the time, empaths see themselves in others. I can't help but always try to understand what people may be going through, so much so, I have given plenty of excuses for how people have treated me in the past. I am very aware of any emotional baggage that some people have to deal with, and why it might influence their behaviour to me, even if it is unacceptable. Instead of not allowing people to disrespect me, I will often find a reason/excuse as to why they are acting in such a negative way. 

Difficulty to say “no”

Saying no is rejection to me. I hate to say no, even when saying yes leaves me in the shit. The main reason as to why empaths struggle to say no is because they understand how painful it can feel to be rejected. Especially if someone is in need of help or support. This will often result in empathetic people taking on responsibilities without considering their own limitations.

A lot of empath traits are very similar, but ultimately it all ends in one struggle to overcome - putting yourself and your needs FIRST. 

I don't know why I find it so difficult to be selfish - a lot of the time my mind is very selfish, but my actions say otherwise. Recently I struggled immensely with moving house. I had managed to get my own place just in time for my tenancy I share with three housemates to end. However, because it was a few days out, I had the choice to leave when it ended and find someone to replace me, or pay DOUBLE rent for another month just to keep everyone else sweet. If everyone else had stayed, I could've found a replacement and had a much less stressful month. But, because everyone then decided to leave, the tenancy notice was extended for another month and although I was well within my rights to leave scot free, I struggled with my finances instead to benefit everyone else. 

A situation like this is my idea of hell. I wanted to be selfish, I wanted to pack my belongings and live my new life without a second thought but I couldn't deal with the guilt, even though I was seen as the bad person no matter what.

When you find it difficult to put yourself first, ask yourself this one very important question:

Would the other person do the same for you?

I fucking doubt it. 

Stop feeling guilty for how others might perceive you for putting your own needs ahead of theirs. It's not fair of anyone to hold such expectations over you anyway! Anyone who judges you for such acts of self care are NOT your friends or people you want in your life. Get rid of that toxicity asap.

1 comment :

  1. Shannon, hats off you to you! xxx Its taken me 48 years to realise that my feelings and needs are just as important as all the people i love and care about!