The Power of Empathy: Are You an Empathetic Person?
Recently, I read an article on Vice about the power of empathy and empathetic individuals. The article outlined different personalities and examined how empathetic people feel the emotions of others. It detailed how easily some people can be influenced by different energies and carry the “weight” of others on their shoulders.
Some people even go as far as to feel the pain of animals and the energy of the universe. As odd as this may sound, this holds truth.
People that are empathetic are easily moved by the emotions of others. If someone else feels completely “off” it throws off their own balance. Being in a room full of different emotions and personalities can easily overwhelm an empathetic person.
Although others experience empathy in a strong wave, there are those who may feel this mildly.
I am one of those people.
As a person who is easily moved and influenced by other people, I can hold testimony to the fact that being a person who feels emotions way more strongly than others can have its ups and downs.
You can easily relate to other people. People are more inclined to trust you. You get along with practically almost everybody, and everyone wants to tell you their problems because regardless of how much you try not to care, you’re a good listener and will end up listening anyway.
There comes a point where a line has to be drawn to distinguish between what type of energy you want to carry around and what emotions should not be kept.
Never feel obligated to listen. There have been times where I’ve met people and they feel the need to tell me their private bedroom affairs. I don’t know if it’s because I have a sign on my face that reads “tell me all your business,” but surprisingly people feel the need to inform me of things I do not want to hear.
Even then, as an empathetic person and one who easily listens regardless of comfort level, you are forced to hear these stories because you don’t want to come off as rude and you think about how much the other person might strongly want to confide in you.
You see this as a benefit in the long run. Potential friendships and relationships that could be made.
If this sounds all too familiar, remind yourself that you do not need to listen, and as “rude” and it may sound, you do not need to care.
It is not your duty to ensure everyone is “comfortable” or “getting along.” You do not have to put everyone else’s emotions above your own or sacrifice your own comfortability for the sake of someone else’s. This doesn’t mean you’re selfish, it just means you’re overly caring, and it’s okay at times not to care.
Chances are you’ll feel guilty about not caring and you’ll care the next time, and keep caring, over and over again to the point where it will overwhelm you.
Know that it’s okay to breathe. Your ability to feel more strongly than others is completely okay, and you have a blessing, although at times it may feel like a curse.
Keep up with Manuela on Instagram, @_manuelad!