Sunday, April 12, 2015

An A-Ha Moment

Do you feel my pain? My anxiety? My fears? Do you feel the discomfort of my uncertainties? 

I am barely awake this morning, but laying in bed, and just saw an article about empaths. Do you know what it is to be one? On a very core level, it means you feel what others feel. Many who are empathic don't know it. As a result, their moods can swing wildly from one moment to the next as they pick up what others around them are feeling. If asked, they would likely find some reason in their lives as to why they feel as they do, or they'd just be befuddled as to why they are suddenly feeling something that makes no sense.

The article talked about how empaths may have a hard time watching the news or movies. I have had both. I can often walk away from a movie In the middle. I have seen many parts of movies, but not always the full movie. I never really thought about this before, but I think it make sense. There are so many times in watching a movie that I can get squirmy, or uncomfortable.

I have said before that I am empathic, and that I can feel how uncomfortable many are in relation to me these days. I never really thought about this whole "empathic" thing when it comes to others. I know many are uncomfortable; I just never thought that part of their discomfort could be that they were picking up on things I feel that aren't pleasant, and feel the need to run the other way.

If that is you, I don't blame you. If you do not even necessarily realize what is going on, and are empathic, you could wind up "claiming" my stuff as your own. And, given I know my own stuff, I know it would have to suck, in a big way. You wouldn't necessarily know what was going on, and might just think other things about me and my situation that help you keep your distance from that discomfort.

Does this make sense to you? I kind of feel like this is an A-ha moment, but the thing is, I am not sure what to "do" with it. I know it is our best interest not to deny what we feel. Even if I tried to deny it, it'd still be there, and others could still pick up on it. I can't just change everything in me so that it feels/I feel better to others. The best I can do is what I am doing - processing stuff as it shows up.

If you feel my "stuff," I know there is every reason you'd want to run. But if you feel my stuff, could I please ask you to consider using it in a way that might allow you to help me, instead of run from me?this, of course, could apply to other people and circumstances in your life, too.

What if our negative reactions to things are our way of not coping with what we feel about them? What if the negative reaction is an adverse reaction to the feelings and emotions we feel, but don't want to? We have a hard enough time with our "own" stuff, but empaths often add the stuff of others, which can often feel even more overwhelming because it isn't ours.

I guarantee that if you were ever in your own uncomfortable spot, there would likely to be people you thought would help/understand who would run the other way at a time you needed them most. The irony, perhaps, is that even if you "understand" that others don't help, there are still a number of emotions that come sometimes come along with the package that aren't exactly inviting, like sadness, disappointment, frustration...

It seems like a cycle that wouldn't be easy to break - especially for those in it who are unaware of the things that are going on unconsciously.


Still not sure what to do with this, but definitely think there is something here. Maybe when I ask people to look at the stuff that makes them uncomfortable what I really "should" be doing is asking them to see if their discomfort even "belongs" to them. Maybe I should be asking them to see their discomfort for what it is, and what it is may be something that is not even "theirs." 

There may be times that it is personal, but my guess is that it is not nearly as often as a person who is unaware that s/he is empathic thinks it is. We humans are very strange animals. We come together in such paradoxical ways. Maybe we are given the ability to feel others so that we can better interact with, and love, them. But, instead, in our lack of awareness, a tool for helping us only has us feeling defensive, combative, and wanting - and needing - to run the other way at a time, especially, when another needs us the most.

Food for thought?

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