These are feelings we all possess to a greater or lesser extent. But for empaths, their ability to tune into others can be of a completely different level. “Some people can be extremely sensitive and are able to step into another person’s shoes or walk in those shoes with them. Others may not be so sensitive; they can pick up thoughts and feelings from people they are around from time to time.
1: Do I feel exhausted after interacting with others?
Because empaths constantly absorb their surroundings, you may feel drained if you are around others for too long. Empaths are like sponges that absorb the thoughts, feelings and sensations around them. If you talk to someone who is depressed you may find that you feel down afterwards. If you talk to someone who is very anxious, you may start to feel the same way. And so on.
This is why many empaths are introverts by nature. You probably enjoy your own company and quiet evenings inside, rather than going out and socialising.
2: Do I often guess what others are thinking?
If you often correctly guess what someone is thinking long before they say it out loud, pay attention. You may find that you align with some people from time to time. If you both keep saying things like, ‘We’re on the same page’, ‘I thought (or felt) the same thing’, or ‘You take the words right out of my mouth’, then you are definitely connected to the other person.”
While this happens to everyone from time to time, empaths may notice a pattern – which is why it’s important to tread carefully. Be aware of when this happens and take it in. If it happens more often, you may want to learn how to sort things out to make sure it doesn’t control your life. Empaths absorb other people’s emotions, so it will be important to engage in self-care – so you don’t get burned out.3: Ben ik erg creatief?
In fact, empathetic people tend to go into the artistic profession, or enjoy the beauty of nature in their spare time. Often empaths are very creative and artistic. Your sensitivity is a strength when you learn to set boundaries, how to assert yourself and ways to protect your energy.
This means creating space for your thoughts and creativity, and not letting others’ problems get you so down that you stop enjoying life or pursuing your passions.
4: Have I always wanted to help others?
Empaths can have everything in themselves to help others, so take it as a sign if you have been altruistic all your life. Empaths have a desire to tackle world problems and assist people. If this is the case with you, it may explain why you have always done a lot of volunteering, why you love to listen to friends when they talk about their problems, or why you are always there when a neighbour needs a helping hand.
5: Do I find public places overwhelming?
Ask yourself how you feel when you are in a noisy place, such as a party, a crowded train station, or a busy networking event. Empaths get easily overstimulated by noise because their focus is often outward rather than inward. So if this has always been a problem for you, it may be an indication that you are empathetic.
6: Can I deal with toxic people?
While many people can deal with unhealthy relationships to some extent – whether they have a toxic friend, colleague, family member, etc – empaths tend to avoid these people like the plague because they just can’t put up with them.
If you are an empath, and you hang around a toxic person for too long, you may even find that they begin to affect your well-being.
7: Why am I not interested in corporate jobs?
There are so many people who don’t like office jobs or corporate culture simply because they don’t find it interesting. But empaths tend to avoid these kinds of careers for very different reasons, namely the noisy, and sometimes manipulative, cutthroat nature of this kind of work.
This is not to say that they cannot do these kinds of jobs, but it can lead to them feeling unhappy about being something they are not. Empaths do better with jobs where they have the freedom to help others and express their creativity. It is important to have quiet moments to decompress. This is more supportive of their intuitive nature.
8: Am I feeling my own emotions, or others’?
If you often feel sad for no reason, or overjoyed for no reason, take a moment to ask yourself why that is. Take a moment to determine if your thoughts and feelings are your own. If you are close with your friends and are able to sense how they are feeling – whether they are happy, sad, confused, etc – you may be experiencing moments of empathy.
You can also ask yourself a question like, “Did this emotion come out of nowhere?” If so, you may be picking up on how someone else is feeling. In these moments, it is important to take it easy and focus on yourself for a while so you can regain clarity.