This is the time of year when school teachers and leaders take a wee break during the school holidays, and many people flee from the wet and cold to more tropical climates to rejuvenate.
Replenishing our energy is vital to our wellbeing. For some people, and in particular Empaths, it is even more important for them to do so.
Not to be mistaken for 'Empathy' which is the ability to comprehend or imagine what another might be feeling. Empaths can literally feel what another person is feeling.
Empaths have often been connected with negative traits such as being emotionally immature, ego-driven, unstable, unpredictable, overly-dependent or attention-seeking. This is not necessarily true; in fact empaths are able to instinctively know the energy from people and places, promote peace, understanding and healing and are also able to change the energy in a room with their own moods and charisma.
The majority of people are able to show empathy. We develop it naturally, usually around the age of 2 years. People who are high empaths are more sensitive to energy from others and their surroundings than most people. They can walk into a room and sense that something is not quite right between the people in it. They are often the people others go to when they need advice as they are great listeners. They can also take things to-heart easily and can sometimes be type-cast as emotional, ‘soft’ or lacking resilience. They also find it difficult to listen to news about violence or cruelty, often opting not to listen or view. Empaths will support the underdog and underprivileged, often against other viewpoints.
Within a work situation, empaths can bring understanding and compassion to situations - using often what may seem as intuitive or gut knowledge. They are the people who can read between and beyond the lines of conversation or actions, often with uncanny accuracy. They are the compassion-cultivators within a team.
Empaths also need to be wary of their own energy. Due to their ability to feel the energy and emotions of others, they can sometimes absorb these to their own detriment. They can take-on other’s emotional energy as their own. If someone in the workplace is upset, an empath’s mood will also drop if left unchecked. Whilst they are able to be around others and lighten the mood (often appearing extroverted), they can also get overwhelmed or exhausted when surrounded by too much energy. An empath requires larger amounts of downtime and solitude to shut-out the world, process and rejuvenate. This is not to be confused with avoidance, depression or something being ‘wrong’. They simply need time to reflect and clear their mind.
So, as you reflect on your energy levels, consider whether you are someone who experiences the traits of an empath. What are you doing to protect your energy?
Some of the things that may be helpful are:
- Morning rituals such as mantras, visualisations and meditative processes to centre yourself and consciously call your energy inwards in order to find an inner calm and strength so you are able to remain steady when working alongside others.
- Small energy-bites throughout the day where you find a quiet place to just sit or walk in order to recalibrate and clear your mind and energy.
- Evening energy-cleansing rituals such as a walk, long shower, getting into nature or being with animals.
- Me-time where you retreat away from the world, sometimes for an afternoon, a day or a weekend.
Any of the above can be as quick as 5mins and as long as a weekend, depending on what is needed and what is happening.
Empaths can sometimes feel exhausted after interactions, and an understanding of how you get and give-away your energy is vital to your wellbeing and ability to thrive in your work situation. For empaths working in Flexible work environments or Innovative Learning Environments this understanding is vital for their wellbeing.
Finding ways that work for you to both protect and rejuvenate your energy is vital. This needs to be done on a snacking-basis, rather than a feast or famine approach.
- The first step towards this however is self-awareness, to notice your emotional reservoir. What/who fills it, and what/who empties it?
- The next step is self-leadership. Begin to play with daily rituals that protect and support your energy maintenance.
We are energetic beings. We have the choice in how we spend our energy. Spend it wisely.