Written by: Cally Worden
When you’re feeling emotionally low, your capacity to absorb negativity increases. Your defences are down, and without even realising it you can become a sponge for the destructive energies around emotions such as anger, fear and frustration. In an empathetic implosion we zone in on negative emotions that we sense in others, as a way of experiencing such issues within ourselves. Learning how to stop absorbing other peoples negativity will help us be a much more positive people.
Assess your Empathy Level
Some individuals possess greater empathetic qualities than others. This makes them more susceptible to picking up on and absorbing the emotions of others. Signs that you may have strong empathic tendencies include:
- People describe you as hyper- or over-sensitive
- Crowds make you feel drained and unhappy at a basic level
- Your feelings are easily hurt
- Close intimate relationships can leave you feeling suffocated
- You are a good listener, and naturally giving and generous
- Your energy is best recharged when you are alone
Relating to some or all of these suggests you may be strongly empatheticic, and therefore need to be vigilant around those who are experiencing negative emotions to avoid internalising their struggle as your own.
Ascertain the Source of Emotions
Empathetic individuals tend to experience their own emotions very fiercely, but can also take on those experienced by others. When you find yourself in a challenging emotional state, step back and seek to ascertain whose emotions are causing you to feel the way you do. If you know the emotion is coming from your own reaction to something, then focus on that and work it through.
If you are in a situation where you would normally expect to be feeling positive (you’ve just won a promotion, for example) then a negative response could potentially be related to the emotions of colleagues who felt they had missed out. Jettisoning these emotions will release you from their negative effects. Often, physically removing yourself some distance away from others can achieve this – negative energy travels in fields that diminish with distance. Get some space, and you will probably find yourself feeling a whole lot brighter.
You cannot adequately protect yourself from the negative energies around you if you feel disconnected from your inner-being. Taking a little time out and focusing on your breathing can help to centre and stabilise your emotions, and aid you in casting aside the grey fog of negativity that can clutter your world.
Think yourself Happy
The act of placing your palm on your solar-plexus (the flat bony bit in the centre of your chest) and mentally sending positive energy into yourself has been shown to be very effective in treating depression. Creating an internal sense of optimism and security, this simple action helps to prepare you at a deep level for dealing with negative energies as they hit you.
A technique that many healers also use to great effect is to visualise themselves in a protective bubble of light, that negativity simply bounces off leaving them untouched by its effects.
Not literally of course. By this I mean taking control of your circumstances as much as possible to manage your environment and limit your exposure to those people who may bring you down:
- Learn to recognise behaviours in others that lead you to feel bad – narcissists, victims and criticisers are all covertly capable of chucking negative emotions your way. Learn to identify them and stay out of their way whenever you can
- Nurture your sense of self-reliance – this is empowering and safe
- Know your limits- if you can’t always avoid those you know are bad for your emotional wellbeing, then set limits regarding the time you need to spend in their company. And be prepared to leave when you need to
- Create a private space in your home – one that is just for you, and teach your family members to respect your need for time in that space
- Cultivate positivity – actively seek out the company of fun, positive individuals who can provide a healthy emotional top-up for you
- Engage in compassion, which allows you to help others but protect yourself at the same time
Knowing you are sensitive to the emotions of others is a great starting point for doing something about it. Self-awareness, and the ability to read the emotions of others can help you to build an emotional safety net around yourself that keeps you strong but at the same time acknowledges the and contains the emotions of others. Empathy does not have to be a bad thing – learn to control it instead of allowing it to control you, and you will find the positive energy starts to flow in abundance.