A State of Being

Have you been told you're an empath? Can you sense and even possibly absorb the energy of others? I am an empath, one incredibly attuned to the state of others' being. I am also an introvert, who craves time to be alone to recharge, though I am often able to find the company of others energizing--as long as the vibes are mutually pleasing! For me, it's all about finding that balance.

As empaths, who are open to the energy of the world, we are often told to protect ourselves. Recently, I read an article about the concept of "Shielding." You project a mental image of a shield. You refine its size and shape, so that you can raise it at any moment when someone else's energy becomes overwhelming. I fiddled with this technique and decided that I wanted to build upon its good intentions.

Certainly, we must treat ourselves with care. We must choose with whom and where we will spend our time. We must listen to our internal responses when others' desires, despairs, and dreams abound around us. But to march through the world with a shield? With the intent to protect ourselves?

For me, that is no way to live. Empaths, so receptive to others, may be unaware of their own significant, beautiful, empowering energy. Empaths are the art in the world, the opposite of the energy vampires. Empaths are the ones everyone wants to be around, the ones who can bend and twist the energy in a room if only they are aware of their great power. So instead of protecting, try projecting your own energy.

Are you centered? Are you at peace? Have you spent long hours...just...being?

Yesterday, after three days of playing outdoors, spending time writing and dreaming, and choosing my company with intentionality and care, I returned to work. I love my job, the freedom it allows me, the hours I work, the people with whom I share my space. However, after so much time actively invested in myself and my needs, I found the return jarring.

By the time I drove home yesterday evening, I was unbalanced and seeking to re-balance in ways outside of my person. We can fall into an easy trap when we stop listening to ourselves and only to the needs and wants others. Eat a whole cake, we may say. Sleep with that person. Drink at least two bottles. Pray, then cry when there are no immediate results. Destruction may come in simpler, more acceptable forms than those. Do you find yourself crawling under a blanket to sleep away the rest of the day or surrendering to a night of binge-ing Netflix. Those Band-aids do more harm than good. What is it that your heart, soul, and body really need?

I'm lucky enough that my neighborhood has a lake on the property. I knew instinctively that was where I needed to go. I needed to be outside: the breeze shushing my thoughts, the sun stroking my skin, and the ground firm beneath me. I took a simple dinner with me, a book, and a notebook and pen. I had no idea if I would write or read a single word. I did end up writing eventually. But for more than an hour, my thoughts raced, my heart quaked; I was still searching for answers outside of what my body needed to tell me.

Finally, I was staring up at the sky, watching this colony of clouds skate by. And the sky became my eye. I became the sky. There were no more words. There were no more sensations. There were no more questions. There was only the nature of being. As an empath, I think I could absorb the energy of the trees and wildlife endlessly. There is no hurry in nature. There is only the present moment. I needed to be reminded of that, of who I am when all of life is stripped away.

I left the lake (after some puppy kisses from a mutt named Buddy), drove home, had a pleasant rest of my evening. When I woke up this morning, I still carried the energy of the lake with me. It is the energy that I am projecting into today. I bring peace to my workplace. I allow my energy not to be a shield but a sun that I hope will light up the lives of others.

Empaths, celebrate! Let loose your light! Do not hide from the energies of the world but seek to influence them. You will make us all better simply because you exist.

Be beautifully you today,


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