What Does It Mean to Be Energy Sensitive (or an Empath)?

by | Oct 4, 2022 | Energy Sensitive | 3 comments

It’s a question I’ve thought about how to answer, for some time now. It’s kind of like, If you know you know. The truth is, though, for a long while I was a card carrying member of this club, yet I didn’t know this club even existed – so I really didn’t know, you know? (yes, I was about to reach for a Fight Club quote, or did I just?). Also, and anyhow, I think it’s important to tease out what it means to be energy sensitive because a) we are ALL energy sensitive to varying degrees and b) identifying HOW we feel can illuminate WHAT we feel. And help us address elusive emotional and physical issues that are hard to put our finger on, but nonetheless effect us through sensitivity.

What does it mean to be energy sensitive?

We FEEL things differently than most. Not WHAT, but HOW. Okay, this may sound tricky, but in practical terms I can go pick up on an energy simply by thinking about an event, person or date in the future. When I leave my center, or when I think of a future or past event, I can suddenly find myself awash with anxiety, or feeling badly. This can be independent of what I think or feel about the event or person, but it can also be a reflection of my feelings, too. It’s on me to sort out whether I just went out of my energy field, or I’m holding an opinion or thought about it – or both.

This is because our Awareness is not attached to our body. This is True for all of us humans, not just energy sensitives (or empaths). When we are sensitive to energy, we are more easily able to sort of time travel- to use our vastly sensitive Awareness to scan, energetically, and we’re not always aware we are doing this. If you’ve watched time travel shows, like the Time Travelers Wife, you may recall that it doesn’t feel good to time travel. Ever.

This leads to my next point. It never feels good to leave your own embodied Awareness. You energetically pick up things you don’t want to pick up- like someone else’s bad day, their grief, self-doubt or self-criticism. Then, you end up having to figure that out. Likewise, you can also pick up on or feel collective emotions and energies. If you are really sensitive, you can even feel when someone else is thinking about you (there are certain people who, when they think of me, I know it). LSS…If you are not aware that you’re energy sensitive, you wind up with a lot of energies and emotions that aren’t yours, which you keep mistaking for yours so keep trying to figure out how to resolve. Do you have any idea how maddening this is?! If you are aware that you’re energy sensitive, you know this one well…

Early on in my journey, I recall visiting a healer who exasperatedly told me I had 8 energies/emotions in my field he had to clear. I had no idea what he was talking about, and he didn’t have an explanation for me, just exasperation at the task he had in front of him, apparently. Anyhow, all I knew then was that I felt REALLY, REALLY, BADLY. I felt physically sick. That’s what carrying around 8 energies can do to a person. Also: I didn’t go back to that healer (I really don’t like it when people make me feel badly for feeling badly. I do that to myself, enough! That is a hard NO for me.).

As I’ve awakened and grown, so has my sensitivity. On this point, many healers and teachers tend to agree: The degree to which you are “awake” is the degree to which you are “sensitive”. Expanded Awareness is quite literally that: Expanded Awareness. You notice more. My teacher used to describe it to me like this. As you wake up (clear your false perceptions, clear out old stuck energies, become more conscious), you will feel more sensitive, not less. The metaphor was that of a white wall with a black dot on it. You are now more Aware, and sometimes excruciatingly aware (!), of that dis-resonant black dot in your energy field because there aren’t any other black dots there anymore.

This explanation of sensitivity takes a lot of the rub out of being “too sensitive”, doesn’t it? I mean, we already have to deal with the icky energies that are not ours, which feels badly, to begin with, so why feel BAD about ourselves?!

Which brings me to my next point. If you feel so much; if, sometimes leave your energy field and feel badly, -or- sometimes you are totally in your embodied energy field and STILL feel other people’s yuck (oh yes, that, too), what can you do about it? It’s essential to have practices to help you through this, so you can lead a somewhat normal life. Yes, I said “somewhat”; you are energy sensitive. You aren’t normal. I hope that’s okay with you. You are different from the rest. You pick up energies, you sense things, you feel things strongly -whatever you want to call it. This is who you are. It is not something you can fix, or if this happened at a certain point, turn back time on the clock.

The only way is forward, with oodles of self-acceptance, self-care and learning how to properly care for your Sensitive Awareness. Energy practices help you to know what your field feels like (versus someone else’s energy), release any gunk you’ve picked up, and help you to recenter into your own energy field  -so you can feel like yourself again. Practices also are an anchor, a way for discerning when you are right here, and when you are not here. In my experience, the practices that consistently work for me involve coming back into my own body (embodiment).

Which is why I feel the key for navigating energy sensitivity with success is staying in your Embodied Awareness. You have an Expanded Awareness but you also have a body that is interacting with what you are feeling. It’s a very finely tuned instrument, and a resource, but it will express quite a few uncomfortable symptoms, and perhaps not want to move at all, if you don’t respect what it needs. Similar to driving around in a high-end Maserati that will require oodles of care and fine-tuning, your sensitive vehicle is very high performance AND for this reason also requires excessive levels of self-care. When you learn to take care of your instrument, and by this I mean really honor that this is how it’s going to work for you – you are driving a high performance vehicle with that marvelous Expanded Awareness of yours – inhabiting your body with exquisite tenderness, care and curiosity becomes your biggest ally for your journey.

If you are energy sensitive, your body is your biggest resource. Learning what it means to be: inside of your own energy field, be inward, how to reconnect to YOU, and release tension, congestion, emotion that isn’t yours, are key.

Of course, there is also the question of who is doing the interpreting of energies, and experiences. The Mind. What we think about how and what we feel is as relevant as anything else, so learning and being curious, here, is essential.

I think this is a good place for me to end this discussion by saying: I created the Intuitive Energy Divination Deck to help myself navigate energy sensitivity, including the tricky pitfalls of self-trust and “&*$%&*%?… What fresh Hell is this?” This deck has been my lifeline. No joke. I created it; yet I STILL use it, I STILL learn about myself through it. It helps me to understand what I’m feeling on those tough days when I STILL don’t know what it is I’m feeling. So much Truth reverberates through this deck! And so when I use it, it energetically clears stuck energy I’m feeling.

I’m not going to put a pretty patina on it, because that has not been my experience; energy sensitivity can be a bona fide and total drag some days, and yet it is the other side of the coin when it comes to being Aware and Awake. It has certain terms and requirements that we must respect in order to get to the good stuff. You know… the good stuff.

I hope this brief exploration brought clarity, comfort, camaraderie -maybe a little smile (?)- to you today!





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  1. Maria

    Yes I too am ‘Energy Sensitive’ but I didn’t understand it until I connected with a loving spirit named Bruno Groening
    1906 –1959. At a conference of the Friends of Bruno Groening, I was helped to find my lost spectacles when my arms raised seemingly by themselves, and I unhooked them from the slats of the upper bunk where I’d put them and forgotten. Then, as clear as a bell, a soft voice spoke inside me “You are an empath. Be careful who you mix with because you become them.” Good loving, fatherly advice from the other side. Many loving Helps and Healings were to follow.

  2. Jessica

    Thanks for sharing, Maria. What practices help you with energy sensitivity? I’m hearing boundaries. That’s a big one for us. hugs, Jessica

  3. H

    This is a great post! It’s not easy being someone who picks up on all the energy in the room all the time. I’m starting to learn about the right boundaries for me around that.

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