Not an Easy Time to Be an Empath

Oh no, not another post where someone, specifically Suna, whines about how horrible the past year’s been on those poor pitiful empaths. Not to worry, I, Suna, am also tired of that, especially when I hear it coming from the mouths of some of the least empathic human beings I know. But, who am I to argue about how others self identify? So, go right ahead and say you’re one. Maybe really most of us ARE empaths after all.

Hey, this jasmine plant is blooming already, even after being severely trimmed. Life WILL return to something better after struggle!

So, I’m not whining. I’m just noticing, like one of those intrusive thoughts that come up in meditation that you notice and then let float away while you enjoy the breath moving in and out, if you can (not all folks can!). I notice that I am not alone in experiencing a greater-than-usual amount of death and loss during the past week or two. I notice that, when you combine that with a LOT of change in areas we can’t control (work, politics, family), stress, anxiety, and worry starts running high. I notice imbalance.

In everyone.

I have not spoken to or texted a single person today who is not at just about their limit of 2021-generated agita. I am one of those people. This makes for an uncomfortable circuit of communication in which people share their issue, I share my issue, they share another issue, I share an issue, and in the end, we realize rather than helping each other, we’ve just ramped each other up into sniveling balls of angst. There has been sniveling and sniffling in my life today, none of it unjustified. I feel their pain, and then, because I’m not exactly at my peak of highest self, send pain back, rather than being a good, supportive listener.

I’d like to stop that, now.

  • One choice I have is to remain comfortably numb. If I stop typing, researching, creating, etc., I just stare forward, like I was this morning, with a thick buzzing in my brain, like I’m still asleep. This doesn’t sound like the picture of good mental health, to me.
  • Another thing I tried was to go learn something. That always helps me. So, today, because I was asked to, I did a whole bunch of research on bullet journals and the full focus journals that Lee uses. The women’s group at work is interested in journaling methods for improving their work efficiency. And I made a PowerPoint NOT with the corporate template. That was a treat that perked me up for at least twenty minutes.
  • My best choice I can come up with right now is to talk to someone who doesn’t feel like I do, so I can vent and not have to receive jittery vibes back. Oh good, I’m home, and Anita’s doing fine. I’ll try that.
Read my socks, 2021.

So, if you’re having one of those days where empaths are trying to be empathetic to empaths, go find someone who will just listen and say, “Tut tut, there there, that’s a LOT on your plate, my friend.” And then go read, knit, color in your coloring book, or find another creative outlet. Feel free to ignore the news unless it’s something like transgender rights to serve in the military or getting rid of private prisons (those pleased me yesterday).

I hope to soon notice more of a balance between positive and negative life events, if this works.

If it doesn’t work, what ideas do you have for dragging on through more of the unending negativity and working back toward a more balanced life?

Author: Sue Ann (Suna) Kendall

The person behind The Hermits' Rest blog and many others. I'm a certified Texas Master Naturalist and love the nature of Milam County. I manage technical writers in Austin, help with Hearts Homes and Hands, a personal assistance service, in Cameron, and serve on three nonprofit boards. You may know me from La Leche League, knitting, iNaturalist, or Facebook. I'm interested in ALL of you!

5 thoughts on “Not an Easy Time to Be an Empath”

  1. Well, I have chronic depression, sooo … 😉 I’m kinda familiar with the negativity.
    1. One of the things we should care about is nutrition/food. If it all becomes too much, PLEASE do not order greasy fast food, but eat something that is healthy (fruit is your friend).
    2. Exercise. Doesn’t have to be HIIT, or yoga, or whatever. Going on a walk outside is cool. You’ll get oxygen, you move your whole body, you might see some interesting things.
    3. Music. Either you put on something that will help you cry it out OR you put on something happy. If things are REALLY bad, listen to Weird Al. He’ll pull you out.
    4. If you are suffering because of low levels of light, get a daylight lamp. They don’t improve the political/social situation, but at least you will be more awake.
    5. Animal life-cams, funny movies (cartoons) or, if you’re into gaming, Stardew Valley or Animal Crossing.

    You can’t always control stuff (I have problems getting out of bed in the morning these days, which is unusual for me), but today, I tried to switch things up by using a new shower gel and I made myself a super healthy breakfast (porridge) and I’ll be listening to some lo-fi while working. Otherwise, you’ll just have to sit it out.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Great suggestions! I’ve actually been watching many television shows about the lives of veterinarians. All the cute animals help. And at least I see now I do most of those things. I have, indeed crossed ice cream off the list of comfort things in favor of yogurt.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Yes, life is hard in varying degrees. You have to find a reason to move on. Surround yourself with peaceful people or activities. Help someone else do the same.

    Liked by 2 people

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