Know your gifts – Empathy, Empaths, & Highly Sensitive Women

Know your gifts – Empathy, Empaths, & Highly Sensitive Women

It’s important for women to understand what being an empath, or a highly sensitive person, means because there are so many of us now and so few who understand our own skills. If you don’t understand it you can assume something is wrong with you, instead of knowing you are gifted. It is also important for women to understand this because many children are being born with these gifts and it helps when the mother understands what her child is going through and can help the child to embrace it and use it.

If you have ever walked into a room and felt like you could ‘cut the tension with a knife’ you know a little bit about what an empath feels like when entering any type of new surroundings – tension or not. Mothers can easily know this experience in the way they relate to their child for example. They will often feel and know what their child needs or if their child is in danger without knowing how to explain it. For several years after a child is born they may have this connection to varying degrees. This is an example of being an empath, a connection that is a part of who you are whether you try to have it or not. It is similar to being in oneness with everything.

Around 4% of the population are empaths and another 21% are highly sensitive. Of course the majority of these people are female. (These % are educated guesses.) On the flip side it’s tough for the other 75% of the population to understand what empaths are and how to relate to them; but information, books, & classes are now abundant as the % starts to shift. More of us will become empaths or at least highly sensitive. This is a good thing. The world needs people who are deeply compassionate and able to tune into their surroundings. People who can help make the world a kinder, calmer, peaceful place.

Books on empathy have been on the NYT list for several years now which is lovely to see, it means people are interested in this topic. You don’t have to feel like you have to hide who you are.

Derived from the Greek “em” (in) and “pathos” (feeling), empathy is being in feeling with another being. “There are many definitions for empathy which encompass a broad range of emotional states. Three types of empathy may exist: cognitive empathy, affective empathy, and somatic empathy.” Being an Empath is having this skill as an inborn trait.

Being an Empath vs Having Empathy vs Being Highly Sensitive:

Empaths can be very intuitive and can know things others do not know. All of their senses are active, including their auric sense, which allows them to pick up on things most don’t notice. They can tune into everything in their surroundings, sometimes distance doesn’t matter, they can pick up on things miles away. Empaths, have more extrasensory perception and are often considered to have Clairsentience, which means clear sensing to a degree of psychic ability. But they often don’t pick up on specific facts, mostly knowingness and feelings.


Having empathy on the other hand, is a skill one learns in order to show compassion toward others. Anyone can learn to show empathy, it often takes some training in being present and listening well.

There are also those who are highly sensitive.“ A Highly Sensitive Person (HSP) has a sensitive nervous system, is aware of subtleties in his/her surroundings, and is more easily overwhelmed when in a highly stimulating environment.” Elaine Arron High sensitive people are in tune to their immediate surroundings, not at a distance, and don’t have knowingness. They are tuning into their environment and may get overwhelmed by it. They sure know when something is just not right.

Empathy-definition Empath

To handle empathy – Learn to establish boundaries. While you can’t turn empathy off or keep it away, you can learn to be more in your self. You have to feel yourself on the earth and inside your own body. You do this through getting grounded. There are many energetic techniques that help with this, like seeing your legs merge deep into the earth like a tree until you feel a connection.

You can also do core work in yoga, poses like plank and side plank really engage the core and pull you into your center. Anything that really engages the core stomach muscles will help a great deal.

Also deep breathing can bring you out of connecting too much with others and build up your personal energy and aura to make you stronger, giving you more control over when and how you feel an empathic connection. There are many places to learn breath techniques but go slow they can be very powerful. You can let go of a lot of energy from others when doing some advanced breath work, which is great but best to do with an instructor.

Acupressure and Chinese meridian therapy can also help to balance your emotions. Strengthening the pericardium meridian is a great start in most cases. It encases the heart and acts as a protector and balancer of our spirit essence. It is our spirit that shows imbalance when we are stressed or panicked.


Empath Empathy

It’s time to start embracing who you are and seeing sensitivity and empathy as gifts. And helping the children being born with such traits to learn to embrace it and use it to help effect positive change in the world.

A well known empath is Alanis Morissette – here is her video called “Empathy” where people are grateful for her gift of seeing them for who they truly are and vise versa.



Humble your Warrior

Humble your Warrior

Deeper meaning of a yoga pose. As women we often feel as if we have to keep up with the world around us, some of us waking at the crack of dawn, going over all we have to do that day in our heads. We loose sight of our true self before we even get out of bed.

We attack the day like misguided warriors ready to conquer anything that comes in front of us. But this usually leaves us feeling stressed out and on guard. How easily we move into fight or flight mode after breakfast, that is if we allow ourselves the time to stop and eat at all. Our whole energy field is on guard. We are not available to share love with our loved ones, we can’t even see them when they are standing right in front of us.

When we we act like this we are not being true warriors, we are being bullies. True warriors are present and humble, they are true to themselves. Bullies are stressed out and trying to prove something to the world around them, they are not being their true selves.

The Warrior poses in yoga teach us how to align our bodies within the space of the four directions, to embody ourselves and stand strong in our energy. I often love doing these poses in class and seeing how I progress through them each new week. One day the instructor had us go a step further, to gather our arms behind our backs and then lean forward (facing the fear of falling over) and humble (bow) our heads.

While doing this I gained a deep sense of what it is like to let go and be humble in any situation, to trust the space and people around me to support me. To know everything will work out and there is no need to be on guard when starting the day, there is no need to try to conquer anything.

To be humble is to be a warrior, to see situations as they truly are not as we imagine they are. We are able to actively engage with our surroundings.

Try this pose or the concept of it in your daily life. Catch yourself when you are in ‘stress & conquer’ mode, and look to see where you can apply some humbleness to the situation. With humbleness a stressed out bully becomes a warrior.


Break Out of a Rut

Whether you’re a writer now or you long to be one, creativity isn’t something that’s always easy to wrangle. You’re heard the stories about writer’s block and you know that some writers are good, but never quite great. The most difficult experience for any writer – new or not so new – is the experience of getting into a rut. When you begin to write the same things over and over, or you just begin to feel like your creativity isn’t flowing the way it used to, it’s time to take action.[more…]

Get Out of the House

Writing is so often a solitary practice, one in which you sit at a computer screen and try to come up with new ideas. But since your computer isn’t going to help you with these new thoughts, it’s time to get out of the house. You need to get out and experience life in order to write about it. Whether this means you head out for a coffee at a local café or you go to the park for a walk, you need to make sure you get out and experience life more often than you are doing right now. When you begin to interact with the outside world, you will begin to see things that will inspire you.

Change Your Routine

Many times, just being in a routine can cause you to feel like you’re in a rut. Maybe you’re a person who writes in the morning or a person who writes late at night – try changing that up for a week. When you do this, you will find you’re able to create from a different perspective, and with a different energy. Though you might not keep this new schedule up forever, sometimes just doing something that you wouldn’t normally do will give you the energy to write things that you wouldn’t normally write.

Write Anything

When all else fails, the best plan of action to get out of a creative rut is to write anyway. Even when you think your words have no meaning and they’re only causing you frustration, write anyway. Write for ten minutes, twenty minutes, or for an hour, without stopping. Don’t judge what you’ve written, don’t even go back to read it. Just write. The more you write past the point of being frustrated and bored with the process, the more you will push past any mental blocks that might be causing your rut.

Get Inspired

Another great way to break out of a creative rut is to read books and poems from those who inspire you. When you begin to look at the creative results of writing, you can begin to want to pick up the pen or the laptop again. Head to poetry readings, writing conferences, etc. Surround yourself with others who are creating, and you’ll reconnect with your muse again.

Writing is something that allows you to be creative, and yet, everyone gets into a rut sometimes. You will too, but you don’t have to stay there for long.

Feel Worthy?

It’s hard to pursue publication and success, especially in a creative field, if you don’t feel worthy of succeeding.

Do you have thoughts floating around the back of you head that you aren’t good enough? That you will never be successful at this? That it is all a waste of time? That the odds are against you? That maybe you could sell a few books but a 100,000 seems impossible? Do you tell yourself you can do it, yet deep down you know you are lying to yourself?[more…]

If you’re not sure, then try this: set a timer to go off every 60 minutes and just record what you were thinking at that time. You’ll be amazed when you start to see a pattern emerge…. is it a good pattern?

You have to believe in yourself, this is not just about saying affirmations mind you, this is about BELIEVING in yourself and what your thoughts tell you, you can accomplish. Explore it and see what happens.

80/20 Rule

Thanks for all your great responses to last blog’s question (both privately and on the blog). I’m glad to know many of you are interested in the creative process!

Ever heard of the Pareto Principle? It explains how successful results come from 20% of your hard work and the other 80% is just wasted effort. In business this is a well known principle and has been proven true time and time again. [more…]As writers I think we can all relate to this principle whether it’s wasting time on chores that don’t really need to get done or wasting 80% on starting numerous writing projects without getting any of them completed. Boy if we could just focus on that 20% all the time how wonderful that would be!

The question is – “How do you know what the 20% is that will get you results without having to waste the other 80% to get there?”

Calm your mind. Pure and simple. When you are calm you develop 20/20 vision and can see which actions will give you that 20%.You can calm your mind before you decide what needs to be done in a day, or which projects to work on, with meditation, deep breathing, soft music or any number of calming activities you enjoy. In one sense Julia Cameron’s daily pages serves to accomplish this task, I know many of you love to write daily pages and swear by them.

Just a thought. Being more productive with your time will help you get those projects completed.