Being An Empath Is A Gift I Didn’t Know I Had

being an empath
Photo by Masha Raymers

Frequently in my life, I have been labeled intense or too much. Not only by family, friends, and in romantic relationships but also by those I only briefly knew.

Hearing these phrases made me shrink as if my personality and emotions were a burden to others because they were larger than life and deeper than the norm. I was saddened that somehow I was different. At a younger age, where I just wanted to fit in and be like everyone else, I was unable to understand the complexities of my emotions and how others may have viewed them.

It was only with growth, experience, and allowing myself to embrace who I am that I have come to understand and appreciate what a rare gift it is to feel things with such intensity in a world that often lacks so much meaningful connection.

Being an empath, I am emotionally moved by the world and the intricacies of life and events around me. I am driven to connect to others, and I am highly sensitive to the emotions of those around me, even those I do not know or know well. During these moments, I feel their energy acutely, from intense joy to crushing sadness. These emotions impact me to such a degree that they somehow become a part of me.

These feelings resonate with me long after I have initially experienced them. They inspire me to gain a deeper understanding of my own life and to somehow make a difference to those around me or find ways to give back to the world I inhabit.

I have come to understand that my empathy is what has driven many of my life choices. I am a highly creative individual with a passion for writing, singing, and art. I adore reading and being absorbed in my love of literature, particularly poetry, which has led to me drafting my first poetry collection for publication, a dream I have always held.

I believe my passion and understanding of emotion are enhanced by my ability to feel other’s emotions as if they were my own. Writing is a cathartic avenue for me to release all the emotion that can often build up inside my soul. I have a passion for psychology that has led to the study of this and into many clinical roles that allowed me to support others with challenging behaviors.

I acknowledge and appreciate that my empathy is utilized best in areas that require compassion and meaningful connection.

Being an empath has also led me to face incredibly challenging obstacles. My very nature has made me a victim of gaslighting in a close relationship. My then-partner manipulated my empathic qualities with emotional abuse, which left me for years, struggling to understand myself and who I was in the aftermath. I developed an anxiety disorder, which was incredibly confusing and frightening, made worse by the intense emotions I experienced. It felt alien to reach the conclusion that I could not always trust what my mind was telling me, that I lived in fear of the smallest things, from stopping at traffic lights to choking on my food.

The empathy I had for others became an inner journey. I focused on understanding myself, my thoughts, and my emotions to support the management of my thinking patterns and how to overcome the intense fear I lived with. I have learned to be empathetic and reflective with myself when I am confused by fear and doubt. I allow these emotions to provide me a deeper insight into myself and the world around me. Being empathic allows me to be incredibly intuitive with myself, which is stabilizing in the face of understanding and managing my mental challenges.

I believe being an empath is the most beautiful and empowering strength. So many view emotional depth as extreme and profound and are unable to connect to this level of feeling, and this too is ok. It means we have a superpower that enhances our connection to the world and the people around us, and this gift makes us special. It allows us to fulfill dreams and ambitions with incredible energy and passion. It drives us to champion others who may need intense emotional support and inspire passion and thought into those we meet. We possess a unique spirit that underpins our ability to foster change and make a difference in the world.

Being an empath has supported strong bonds with the people in my life. My family and friends, work colleagues, neighbors, and the incredibly uplifting writers platforms I am a part of.

Being true to my often overwhelming depth of feeling has built incredible connections throughout my life, such as the magnifying attachment I had to my daughter while pregnant. I felt incredibly connected to her as she grew inside me, a bond that continues to thrive and deepen since her birth.

My empathy has strengthened my character and enabled me to embrace and celebrate womanhood and my connection to the divine feminine that lives within me. I believe in the depth and intensity of my feelings as I experience them, and I am proud and grateful to be so intuitive to myself and those I connect with.

Being empathic is a superpower I have lived with my entire life. It has led me to this moment of sharing my truth, empowering, strengthening, and giving a voice to those who need to hear it most.

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