We live in the world with many people. Some are heartfelt and uplifting to be around. Others are more difficult. It’s important to find a comfortable way of relating to people so that you can develop a harmonious interdependence rather than being codependent.
The secret to reducing overwhelm is to notice it quickly. Many empathic patients have come to me saying, “I’ve felt overwhelmed for years.” They live in the persistent, uncomfortable state of sensory overload or else have become exhausted, burned out, or sick.
Many sensitive people have not learned how to self-soothe if they are upset or when life gets intense. Like many children, perhaps you didn’t have the kind of parents that held you and let you know that everything was going to be okay.
I invite you to take stock of your experiences in 2020, in order to gain clarity and compassion on your journey as an empath. Reflect on and journal about your progress and challenges. What were the emotional high points?
In "Emotional Freedom" my approach to transforming fear has two stages. First, take stock of what makes you afraid and distinguish irrational fears from legitimate intuitions. Second, take appropriate steps to heed protective fears and transform the others with courage. At times you may foresee real danger, but more frequently unproductive fears clobber you. Therefore as a general rule, train yourself to question fears tied to low self-esteem; we’re all worthy of what’s extraordinary.
For over twenty years as physician, I’ve witnessed, time and again, the healing power of tears. Tears are your body’s release valve for stress, sadness, grief, anxiety, and frustration. Also, you can have tears of joy, say when a child is born or tears of relief when a difficulty has passed. In my own life, I am grateful when I can cry. It feels cleansing, a way to purge pent up emotions so they don’t lodge in my body as stress symptoms such as fatigue or pain. To stay healthy and release stress, I encourage my patients to cry. For both men and women, tears are a sign of courage, strength, and authenticity.
A big challenge for all sensitive people is how to be compassionate without absorbing the stress of others and the world. We don’t have the same filters as most people. We are emotional sponges who feel everything and instinctively take it in.
In my medical practice of over two decades, I specialize in treating highly sensitive people and empaths like myself. We feel everything, often to an extreme, and have little guard up between ourselves and others.