How to Escape Empathy

How to Escape Empathy
Melissa Carver

Loving outside of yourself is a balancing act. You can love from a spectrum of close family members to those who you have never met. Being an empath means you are susceptible to placing your personal love and feelings in the hands of someone else if you do not stay self-aware. To say you are empathetic means you can share the feelings of another; however, it doesn’t mean you must. Compassion for a person, animal, or situation can be conducted without accepting the energy as your own.

All human emotions and triggers have positives and negatives—the latter in which may quickly drain you if you are not vigilant. For example, you may want to practice escaping empathy in times of chaos in your workplace, school, and social fluctuations. Outside of your home there may be various forms of hurt, pain, complaining, suffering, and even death. You must keep your energy high to be your most contributing selves.

You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”
–Eleanor Brown

If you find yourself in an emotional situation and feeling empathetic, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  1. Is getting upset helpful in this situation?
  2. Why am I empathetic toward what is currently happening?
    1. Do I relate due to a past similar experience?
    2. Do I currently feel like this as well?
    3. Do I have a fear of this happening to me?
    4. Do I wish I could take their pain away?

If the situation feels personal, you may consider writing down your thoughts, taking some reflection time, and working through challenges or trauma you have faced. Occasionally, your empathy for others may seem to cut you so deeply due to your personal lack of reconciliation.

Here are five tips to help you escape empathy.

1. Practice Detachment

Negative emotions can often interfere with a clear thought process, make you physically ill, and last hours after the other person has completely moved on. Feeling sad, afraid, angry, or disgusted are entirely too often the attributes that pull on an empath. Practicing emotional detachment can help relieve the intensity of negative emotions. Note: You can emotionally detach from others while still caring about them.

Detachment from the outcome is also useful. The outcome will depend upon various factors, none of which you have control over. Remind yourself that the person who is upset has the power to choose their next words, thoughts, and actions—and that you cannot make them choose.

Your daily life puts you around the same people, or same type of people, on a regular basis (e.g., your job, work route, family members, etc.). One easy way to start practicing detachment is with a few simple questions:

  • Is this particular person trying to make a positive change?
  • Do they just like to speak negatively?
  • Does this person have karmic debt they are working through?
  • Do they attempt to learn lessons from their challenges?
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