If you’re empathetic, you know all about absorbing emotional pain when you try to help others. Do you have problems with simple tasks like watching TV or a movie? Being a physical empath can affect your emotional health, as you seem to catch other people’s fatigue, emotions, and illnesses.
You may suffer from “empathic illnesses,” which is common among highly sensitive people.” While the feelings and symptoms you experience are genuine to you, they belong to someone else. Have you ever heard of sympathetic pains?
During pregnancy, it’s not uncommon for the father to experience similar pains to that of his partner. It’s a phenomenon called Couvade Syndrome, and it affects more than 20-80 percent of expectant fathers. According to Frontiers in Psychology, psycho-social stressors and hormonal changes cause the man to feel similar pangs.
While a father may feel this during his partner’s pregnancy, a physical empath feels these sensations every time they get into a crowd of people. Going out to eat or to the movies can be a real challenge, especially when you’re a sponge absorbing the feelings and emotions of others.
Are You a Physical Empath?
A physical empath is different than a traditional empath who feels emotions. Here’s a little quiz that can help you see if you fit into this category. Ask yourself each of these questions, and how many “yes” or “no” answers you have will be the deciding factor.
1. Are you tired, sick, or overwhelmed in crowded social situations?
2. Do you often feel anxious or sick when you’re around someone anxious or ill?
3. Have you ever felt exhausted when you’ve been around someone who is acted angry or hostile?
4. Have you been to the doctor to run many medical tests only to find out that nothing is wrong with you?
5. Do others often call you a hypochondriac or say you’re too sensitive?
6. Have you ever sat by someone who appeared friendly and well-rounded, but you started having weird sensations and felt exhausted being next to them?
7. Do you suffer from chronic fatigue for which there is no medical explanation?
8. Does going out in public bother you so much that you would rather stay home alone?
How did you score? If you answered more than six of these questions with a “yes,” it’s a good indication that you might be a physical empath. Answering three or fewer “yes” questions means you’re likely not one of these highly sensitive people. Consequently, you don’t have to be an empath to be affected when you help others.
How to Help Others Without Absorbing Their Pain
Have you ever thought you were a hypochondriac because you frequently feel sick? Perhaps people have told you that you tend to exaggerate your health and wellbeing. Empaths often go to the doctor seeking answers to why they feel so sick.
Sadly, they often hear there’s nothing wrong with them, as this is not a condition that medical science fully understands. Realizing that you’re a physical empath can be quite eye-opening, as it can explain much of what’s going on in your life. Thankfully, you can learn coping skills and tricks to help you.
When you learn practical coping skills, you can still enjoy life and help others, but you won’t have these physical burdens. Here are some things for you to try.
1. Put Distance Between You and the Source
Did you know that if you distance yourself at least 20 feet from the suspected source, it can change everything? You’ll feel instant relief when you leave the oppression of the emotions attacking you. You don’t have time for these empathetic illnesses, so change seats, pick another lane, and find a way to distance yourself from the source.
2. Practice Meditation After You Help Others
Meditation is one of the best ways to counteract emotional or physical distress. Since you can meditate at work, at home, or in a public venue, these tricks can help you wherever.
If all else fails, find yourself a public bathroom where you can close the door and practice this ancient art. You want to focus on love, positivity, and purging those negative feelings to calm yourself. It only takes a few minutes to start feeling better.
3. Be Self-Aware
When you realize your triggers, you can easily remove yourself from the situation as an act of protection. Becoming self-aware allows you to acknowledge the emotions and feelings that aren’t healthy for you, and you can keep from absorbing them. When you help others, it’s pretty rewarding, but you need to learn how to separate their emotions and problems from you.
4. Learn How to Evaluate the Situation
Assume you’re out to dinner with your friends. You feel shaken and like you’re coming down with the flu. You felt fine until a gentleman came and sat behind you at another table.
Yes, you might be coming down with an illness. However, as a physical empath, you must realize that you could be absorbing the emotions of the person close to you. You must first determine if it’s your problem or someone else’s.
Get up and go to the restroom, or you should take a quick walk outside. Does the feeling leave when you remove yourself from the situation? If you feel remarkably better, it can be your absorbing someone else’s issues.
When you help others, you must learn how to evaluate the situation, as it can save you much heartache. Pinpointing where these negative emotions are coming from can help you find resolve.
5. Immerse Yourself in Water
Sure, you want to help others, but you must learn to release all this negative energy you absorb afterward. One quick way to eliminate some of these empathetic illnesses is to take a bubble bath or shower. This is an easy way to dissolve the stressors you’ve absorbed.
Why not add some Epsom salt or an herb, like lavender oil, to your waters? When you’re soaking in minerals, it can help you to purify and detox your body, which is going to make you feel so much better.
6. Learn to Say “No” if You Don’t Feel Able to Help Others
When’s the last time you told someone “no?” One of the reasons why so many empaths feel so overwhelmed is that you don’t know how to set boundaries for yourself. You can control how much time you invest in people who stress you out.