For years, I’ve felt I am an introvert living the life of an extrovert. Finding myself exhausted after social or work activities that required interactions that I found tedious, I rebuked myself for not being able to handle it. I would make time for little “retreats” throughout the day, finding ways to get away from the group and be alone for a few minutes to re-insulate myself.
My husband, a history buff, liked war movies and even played out re-enactments of war games in miniature with his friends. I am extremely sensitive to violence and this bothered me. I couldn’t watch war or horror movies with my family.
After years of this struggle, I was exhausted and felt pretty bad about myself. Then, I began to meditate and study energy. That’s when I began to understand that I was not an introvert living a lie in an extrovert world. Instead, I discovered I was an empath.
An empath is someone who is highly tuned in to other people’s emotions. Someone who “knows” without knowing how or why. An intuitive.
Empaths need to recharge and re-insulate was a result of absorbing other people’s negative energy.
Studying what I could do to keep myself from drowning in the sea of other’s energy, I found several ways to encircle myself with positive energy and be a positive force in my environment, instead of a sponge.
- Cleansing. I’ve always liked taking a hot bath. Now, I understand why. Sometimes a literal, physical bath or shower is what you need to wash off the negative energy you’ve absorbed.
- Sage cleansing. Another type of cleansing is by burning sage and being in the presence of its smoke. This was a common practice of the Native Americans. Just a minute or two with sage burning around me makes me feel grounded.
- Meditating. People tell me they can’t meditate. Yes, you can! Meditation doesn’t mean just the “Ohm” meditation. Sit quietly, close your eyes, breathe deeply and repeat a word you love (mine is “Joy”) or a favorite hymn or Bible verse. Catholic prayers are a kind of meditation or trance, as they are repeated over and over.
- Prayer. Asking for God or the Universal Spirit or Light to give you guidance can be refreshing. Whatever you believe in, sitting and breathing deeply while asking for the help of the Universe (God, to me) is always refreshing.
- Essential oils. High quality essential oils are a quick way to ground oneself and re-energize. I like oils such as peppermint, lavender, and citrus.
It may take a little time and experimentation to find what works for you. The first step is to be brave enough to admit that you don’t always want to be around other people!