Are You An Empath? – Traits of an Empath

Are You An Empath? – Traits of an Empath

Well, what would my blog be without discussing the traits of an empath. The reality is that some times it is very hard for one to know if they are really an emapth. I did not know for most of my life and even when I began suspecting I didn’t know how to figure out if I was or not.

Basically it is simple. If you identify with many of the traits (although maybe not all) then that tells you that you need to keep reading about empathy because most likely YOU ARE AN EMPATH.

Still unsure and want some help getting down to the nitty gritty for once and for all…join a message board and explain the things you experience and get some feedback. That is not only a great way to find out but also you will probably get some really good advice at the same time. Here on my blog I have some links to message boards and forums.

Now on to the good stuff…

Empath is the ability to feel others emotions (actually emotional and physical) as though they were your own. Also empaths can read and understanding others as though they were them. That the simple no-nonsense definition.film Before I Fall trailer

TRAITS OF AN EMPATH

  • Often quiet but emotionally expressive most of the time. 
  • Some empaths have gotten so use to blocking emotions that they may seem the opposite from what an empath should be. Possible at times not wanting to be touched even by those closest to them. Often not feeling like being out in a crowd but rather alone or in a small group.
  • Uncontrolled empaths can often spend more time focused on others and ignoring their own needs. Empaths often put others first
  • Empaths often avoid tense or harsh situations. They may shrink away from any situation that proves tense.
  • Empathsare emotionally sensitive to violence and general chaos. Yelling… oh yelling is not an empaths favorite to be in the midst of. Now let me say that some Spanish people tend to talk loudly any way but this is not a bad thing for empaths if the emotions are positive ones. I wanted to mention that cause I’ve had many of my friends bring that up to me and I wanted to set the record straight…I often spend time at my neighbors house and she is Spanish and husband is Islamic and with all the yelling sometimes I still feel right at home. lol. I just love them!
  • Empaths can often feel something as they see it happen…for example, seeing someone cut their finger an empath may sense the pain as it happens.
  • Distance does not affect what an empath feels and often you may be able to feel or sense something going on with someone at a far distance.
  • Empaths are sensitive to loud noise.
  • Empaths are sensitive to various television programs. In particular, television programs that depict emotional drama like the news and police shows as well as movies which depict certain emotional or harsh situations.
  • Empaths have a hard time understanding cruelty and criminal acts that involves hurting others.
  • Empaths are super sensitive to suffering in the world and are often idealists who theorise about fixing the worlds problems.
  • Are often found working as volunteers, with people, animals or the environment.
  • Empaths are often drawn to areas of music or the arts.
  • Empaths are often very charismatic and have the ability to draw others to them. They often find that a complete stranger will tell them their life story while standing in line at the grocery store.
  • Are great listeners as they generally have an interest in other people and to know more of what they already sense of a person.
  • Can seem very moody with drastic mood swings. This is mainly due to picking up the emotions of others without realizing it and then with those emotions reacting to others.
  • May have experienced other paranormal experiences such as out of body experiences, De Ja Vu, and just knowing as well as other psychic abilities. 
  • Empaths often have trouble focusing and space out/day dream often.
Also see The Real Traits of an Empath and The Real Traits of an Empath – The List

Posted on: August 10, 2008Sherry Andrea

16 thoughts on “Are You An Empath? – Traits of an Empath

  1. Do you think it is possible for an empath to pick up on the emotions of a person who has written a piece or created a work of art even if the empath has had no direct physical contact with the artist?

  2. Absolutely…I do it all the time. Through emails I not only can read but also connect empathically. I can only speak for me….but distance makes no difference for me. Even if the coorepondence speaks of someone else I can end up connecting to that other person who is spoken of. In the beginning that is what gave me a lot of trouble because I would pick up connections thinking it had to be someone I had touched (or touching an object that had their energy on it), spoken with, seen a pic of, or read communication from. Knowing more about who and what I could connect to made it easier for me. Ohhhh through music also.

  3. Awwww I am touched…thank you. I have been working on my wire art lately but I will be more present because this blog has been such a positive addition to my life along with all the people I have had the pleasure of meeting through it. I am truly grateful!

  4. Hi Sherry , this would explain a lot for me. I sometimes find tears jumping in my eyes when I hear of negative things on the radio like the woman in Stamford (I think) this morning. They played her 911 recording on the news here (SA). I usually always manage to prevent an outright bawl, but the tears are there. A lot of the traits u mention apply to me as well, though, not all.

  5. Sherry,

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I have to agree that determining oneself to be or not to be empathic is a difficult thing. I am still uncertain. It's probably quite obvious that I feel that I could possible be an empath, and thus found my way here to your blog.

    I presume that if I am empathic, that I probably have been all of my life and never noticed it. I identify with many of the character traits you have listed, most of which have intensified for me over the past few years.

    I'm 20 years old, in college and was diagnosed with clinical depression and anxiety disorder a few months ago. Never being able to understand why I felt so sad and so anxious was troubling to me. I have no triggers to my depression, but my anxiety happens appropriately among large crowds of people and in heated situations. Recently my depression has been coupled with strong intuitive feelings to give very specific people, very specific messages or I just may feel that there is a person that I need to contact, without ever really understanding why. The feeling persists until I contact the person. Other times a friend or family member may contact me with troubling news. Because by default most people believe that their emotions are their own, it took a while for me to consider that my depression, the intuitive feelings, and happenings in the lives of my loved ones was more than a mere coincidence.

    My only possible explanation to why I am all of a sudden feeling these emotions in ways that I never did before, is that my freshman year of college I met a girl who identified as psychic. She is now my best friend. She doesn't boast that she has such abilities, but since we were so close I guess she felt as though she could confide in me. I don't know in detail all that she is capable of, but she could always read my emotions with ease. She's even better at it now after we have know each other for a while. It's very strange. We often seem to be on a similar wavelength, so to speak. I often wonder if it's hear reading me, me reading her, or both of us reading each other unanimously. I never took the time to ask her about it.

    If indeed I am an empath, it doesn't seem to be the most glamorous thing. I'm trying to figure out, if I am empathic, what is the purpose of me having this 'gift' and how can I use it for the greater good. I'm pretty certain that it's sole purpose isn't to cause trouble in my life because it can be pretty stressful sometimes. In fact, I recently started dating a man who was identifies as depressed.* I don't know what he has been going through lately, but I feel like I'm taking a lot of that emotional strain on myself. I just don't know how to deal with it all.

    Well, I share all that with you because I wanted you to know that you're helping real people who may be really confused about what it is that they are experiencing. It is such an inspiration to see someone who understands what it is I and other people are going through. Thank you again and best wishes to you in all that you aspire to do.

    Namaste,
    Morg

    *I don't identify as depressed, but rather as sensitive to feelings and emotions. I'm trying to find the positivity in all of this. However, I do acknowledge that I was medically diagnosed with the disorder.

  6. Lucille,
    I sooo know what you mean. I try to hold back the tears cause most already think I am too sensitive and need to be on medication. lol. But I just ask the question…what is it really though? Is it that I am too sensitive or that some are maybe not sensitive enough? Empaths rarely go around pointing the finger at people saying "Hey, your not sensitive enough!" Maybe we should start pointing it out to people in a nice way more often. I think of how the world would change with more people just at least allowing themselves to be a tad bit more sensitive.

    No, it's common that you will have most traits but maybe not all. It's also a matter of development. Once you realize you are an empath and you purposely open up to it more and allow yourself to really be who you are…you will notice more traits will begin to surface in you.

  7. Morg,
    I only got half way through your comment and I had to tell you…a light bulb went on when you talked of your friend who is psychic. You need to read about vibrations. My best friend also awaken from being associated with me. Why? Because my vibrations have been steadily increasing (sorry if I don't explain this clearly) the people I associate with a lot will either have to come up in vibration nearer my level or…well do you notice those people you just don't get along with and the relationship just never gets better and often gets gradually worse? They are fighting raising their vibrations. Although it is not on a conscious level it is similar to a person just refusing to change as those around them are changing for the better. Your friend by association raised your vibrations. Think also of the timing of things. I am getting something else and not sure what it means. A feeling over my right chest…in that area. I know this sounds funny but…chest as in getting something off your chest. Also it is the right side of my chest so I would say this mean that you have done something necessary possibly by writing and talking about these experiences and your friend. Might I suggest you (yes I am definitely this is right) have a convo with your friend about things, experinces…share and let her share some of her experience with you. Clear your chakras but the one I am feeling the most right now is the sacral and solar plexus chakra…but I think more your sacral charka. There's info on the chakras and clearing them in my blog too. I am also feel my throat charka. The throat chakra has a lot to do of course with communication but also with clairaudience (clear hearing). And the last thing I am getting is that this is a big break through for you. It's funny but some times we have break throughs that are HUGE and don't even realize that we have had a huge breakthrough. lol. I am laughing cause that is me totally…I always tell my guides I may be slow but I eventually get there. lol.

    Yes I too was treated for depression for months and didn't know it wasn't mine. I also suffer from social anxiety disorder that I beleive has to do with a fear I devloped of being out there in the world and open to all that will affect me. But it tool me a long time to link everything together and make sense of it. I was on medication for depression for a few months but I just knew from the beginning that it wasn't the answer for me and that there was something more to it. It soooo helps to get to know yourself so that you know when something is just not right within yourself and when it is not you but something or someone else you are picking up.

    Let me come bak and answer the second half of your comment cause yes I agree that it would seem that you would be tortured by being an empath but once you see it from all side and realize some things you can see the good that might make you not want it any other way.

    Also check out my blogroll cause there are some links to sites that have really great info.

    Sherry

  8. Hi Sherry,

    Awesome food for thought. Thank you for your time and energy in sharing your experiences and providing a safe haven for others to do so too. Who knows what wonders we will find when we open our eyes and spirits.

    Michelle

  9. I would like to be able to switch "it" off at will.It's very akward to be able to tell/feel someone else's reall emotions or ideas when they are telling you something entirely different.And sometimes i feel 'dirty'?when being comming into contact with some people.Even though they seem quite nice and decent on the surface.
    Bonny

  10. Hi Bonny,
    I know the feeling. Sometimes it can be difficult to know the truth of situations and yes you can't judge a book by it's cover. As an empath we see the cover but before we even realize it the book is open and we see what is between the covers.

    Empathy that is not developed can't be controlled very easily. Many people want to know why in the world would they want to further develop such a thing. lol. I think at some point we all have asked that question. But the answer is because that is the only way to have control over our abilities. Don't think of empathy in a different light as you would clairvoyance or clairaudience…empathy developed is clairsentience which is a psychic ability. If you were clairvoyant and were disturb by what you saw and wanted to know how to shut it off the answer would be through developing your clairvoyance so that you would have control of it.

    I know that is probably not the answer you wanted to hear of course. I can suggest some other things that might help a little though. Practice being detached. What I mean is if I see someone but do not focus on them and actually divert my focus away from them sort of as though I don't even know they are there, then I can most times keep from connecting to them and reading them and feeling them empathically. When you touch someone you are also connecting with them and need to break the connections that you pick up. That you learn through developing your emapthic abilities. Also crystals that could be use to limit what you are receiving and that will clear and transmute and negative energy are the citirine crystal and the Breeceated Jasper. I would absolutely recommend you always carry at least a citrine on you at all times…this will help you greatly. Then as time allows do more reading and learn how to break connections and clear your chakras and aura. Of course learning basic protection methods would also help limit what you receive.

    As a last mention you could also close all your chakras. I don't usually recommend doing that though because you at least need to learn to use your empathy in every day life to help you with everyday things. I am getting clearly right now that you should not do that.

    Sherry

  11. Hi Sherry,

    Thank you so much for all of your advice. I was a little surprised reading your response because I had the exact same experience with my anti-depressant medication. I'm currently doing research on how to clear chakras. There just seems to be so many different methods and so much information out there. And, I tried to talk to my best friend about her experiences, but she wasn't interested in sharing. I too think this my be a big breakthrough in discovering who I am. Again, thank you so much.

    Best wishes,
    Morg

  12. Sherry,

    I wanted to share my story/ideas to anyone that would listen, but after a multitude of blank stares from just about everybody I spoken with about this topic I became very reserved. Now is a chance to open that metaphorical can of prank snakes.

    I considered my life to be, for the most part, an abysmal failure. My mother continues to joke about how as a young child, I couldn't play soccer because instead of being competitive, I would help the other players up if they had fallen. I didn't care about winning or losing, I cared about everyone having a good time.

    As I progressed into adolescence, I was labeled a "geek" and "loser" for two very specific reasons: one, I had no desire to have any sort of physical dominance over anyone else, and two (here's the kicker): I knew someone wasn't going to like me before I truly met them. In fact, I came to realize that everyone's emotions were worn like a little bubble above their foreheads, with information pertaining to their current mood, propensity towards a certain temperament, IQ… and this info was available from all, 24/7.

    As a man just trying to "be normal and get laid" in high school, I found myself virtually shutting down. I would make predictions about people I've never met, always being right. I would anticipate movements and finish sentences and downright repeat verbatim a thought reaction to any circumstance. Even the most silent rooms would be a flurry of interpretation strictly proportional to the amount of other bodies in the room; this obviously exhausting occurrance usually zapped me completely of all energy.

    I was labeled mentally ill, "gifted" (whatever that means…), schizophrenic (never clinically), and straight-up nuts. Basically I was frustrated with the world because if everybody had the information I had on everyone else, nobody would ever DREAM of treating people they way most do in this world.

    Eventually, I was diagnosed as a borderline personality. As never truly feeling male or female, I've had therapists try to convince me I was a homosexual, gender dysphoric, and the like. But now, I basically say that my yin and yang are in sync.

    And that's the real message I want to stress to everyone. As a male empath, I naturally feel emasculated. But this feeling is rediculous. Its analogous to a concert pianist being asked to play with his/her feet. "Sure, but it won't come out very well…"

    But this burden is only a burden in context. My advice to male empaths is that a female brain in a male body is the most reactive, selective, and fussy combinations to be dealt in life.

    But a royal flush isn't built from pairs.

  13. Robert,
    Thanks for sharing because a male perspective on empathy is greatly helpful. Balance is key and at time can seem like we must be out of balance, that is based on what everyone is telling us about ourselves, but what is the curve based on? Something that always makes me laugh is when I think to myself "well, maybe I am the normal one and you are the one not quite right" when people have negative opinions about myself or empaths. I'd like to think that empaths are the original way all people use to be and because of negative emotions running rampant that ability went dormant in many, but now we are no longer going extint but exsisting in ever growing numbers and that there will be a day that we are in the majority because of the numbers of people awakening all the time.
    Sherry

  14. I don't know, I just don't know. How can you really tell if you are or not? I fit most of these things, but I just don't know. I keep reading the same things over and they all say the same thing. It all fits but I can't believe it. I don't want this. I know giving it a name doesn't change anything but I can pretend its not real if I don't know what it is. How can you tell for sure?

  15. Alex,
    Also read http://myjourney11.wordpress.com/2009/04/06/the-real-traits-of-an-empath/ and http://myjourney11.wordpress.com/2009/04/06/the-real-traits-of-an-empath/.

    As you will be able to see from reading those two posts I also was were you are now. I read all the traits but it still told me nothing definitely. I was still asking "But am I am empath or not?" So I can totally relate. Many grow up and go through their lives never knowing they are an empath. Many just think they are at time overly sensitive to others. Rose Rosetree sees by aura whether someone is an empath an I know by asking and being told through my clairsentience.

    With you, Alex, I am feeling my root chakra. The root chakra related to…Survival – Fear (unhealthy) – Trust (healthy) – Grounding need connection with spirit and Earth – nourishment – health – home – family – prosperity – appropriate boundaries. I am getting that you are an empath, however if possible I would suggest you clear your root chakra. The root chakra was the first I ever cleared in myself. It was really helpful to do before going further and making decisions as to what I was going to do…move forward with fully opening to my empath self or not.

    Would you like me to, using Reiki, clear your root chakra? Are you under a lot of stress because I am picking up something like that from you?

    Relax and don't worry about empathy because it is something that you can learn to control and one you have control it is up to you if you choose to turn is down so it has less affect on you.

    I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Sherry

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