The Evolving Empath: Anxiety, or energy?
Mental Health & Spirituality are one of the same.
At 13 I was 'diagnosed' with a severe anxiety disorder. After two years of therapy, I was put on anti-depressants. But I believe these anxious-like feelings started before my teens, I just didn't know how to identify it.
I was always a shy kid, very softly spoken and didn't like being around a lot of people. I remember having panic attacks (not knowing that's what they were) in public and crowded places, I would cry and blame it on feeling sick because I didn't know how else to explain these f*cked up feelings.
One time overseas, I was 10 years old and we were out at a Museum. It was very crowded. It felt loud and I felt like I was being crushed - when in reality, It wasn't that loud and I wasn't being crushed. But the feelings were so strong I cried to my parents and even a security guard because I was adamant that I was being pushed around, being touched and I couldn't hear properly. No one was understanding me because it physically couldn't be seen. It's only now at the age of 25 (15 years later) I know what actually happened.
The feeling of being crushed was the overwhelming energy from everybody in that room. It was so loud to me because I could 'hear' everyone. I felt I was being touched because that's how in tuned I was.
This is just one example of many experiences I had - from childhood, adulthood to motherhood. Everyone told me it was anxiety when really it was ENERGY.
I do feel anxiety but I do not have an anxiety disorder - my medical records would show otherwise.
I am an empath.
I can absorb and feel everything and everyone. I know this now, and now I know how to cope with it.
High school was hard. I hated going to school, even though I liked learning. Being around a lot of people just really got to me. Small groups were fine but classrooms or assemblies were horrific. Quiet indoor spaces with a lot of people is when most people go into deep thought. So it gets very 'loud' for me.
I've run out of class, I wagged classes and faked 'sick' a lot. The energy was just insane, I would get panic attacks. They were the most horrible feelings for me. They would destroy me.
The worse times I wouldn't go to school for months, I wouldn't leave my house, I got depressed, suicidal a few times in my life.
Panic Attacks are a result of overwhelming stress and increased adrenaline. Where our body goes into 'fight or flight mode' our bodies naturally get into this state when we feel threatened. Now when you have a panic attack while sitting quietly in a classroom where there is no physical or obvious threat in sight - you're considered mentally ill (like I was) What I believe now, is actually my body was still reacting to threats but at a higher level that nobody likes to acknowledge or accept as reality. I was 'picking up' on energy that felt either negative or threatening and my body reacted as it would have to a physical threat.
I think the hardest part for me was feeling isolated, that no one understood - I didn't understand what was happening at the time. My peers would question a lot and I felt out of place often. Some felt I was lying as sometimes I would be ok and other times I would not (depending when certain energy would like to say hey) Like, how do you explain that?
I wish western medicine and practices wasn't the only option for me back then.
I am not normal. But then who is? Listen and embrace who you are. Thats a cure in itself. One that took me a while to learn. But have mastered. I have never felt more at peace!
The following is what works for me during my times of heighten empathy (or anxiety)
1.) Stop Apologising
Guilt is a horrible feeling. Something we tend to feel often due to feeling like an inconvenience, simply saying 'sorry' when no one understands or because we tend to avoid on cancel plans. Sometimes we apologise out of respect and consideration, but we do not owe anyone an apology due to our feelings of discomfort. Due to our already heighten emotions, we can seriously carry guilt so easily over the smallest things. Be EASY on yourself!
2.) Cleanse & Recover
After most social outings, you'll find me in the shower. Not just for hygiene reasons, but to literally wash everyone's shit off lol While doing a quiet karakia I will wash off all the energy that doesn't belong to me. I like to take a timeout, my timeout is doing anything alone, chilling, reading or writing is ideal but in this modern life - even working, cleaning etc is helpful as long as I'm alone and my soul can dance freely for a bit to recover. I find if I don't regularly have timeout, I become heavily fatigued, tired and exhausted.
3.) WOMAN ARE SACRED
Yes, we are! Sex is a deep thing. We can absorb a lot of stress and energy when we connect with a mate. Promiscuity is popular within this modern age but I do believe no one is truly happy doing this long term, it is not fulfilling to our soul and our purpose here as women (procreation) If you compare sleeping with someone you care about against someone you don't - love always wins. And if it doesn't feel that way then there's probably some unbalanced energy with/or between you and your partner.
4.) Bleed & Rejuvenate
Do you love the moon? I do. She's my best friend. The lunar cycle and the menstrual cycle are both 28 days long and both represent 'rebirth'. When I have my period I take this time to rejuvenate, I also tend to be more sensitive to energy at this time - so you wont find me out partying or around a lot of people when my monthly friend arrives. I won't make many plans or workout as much when I'm expecting my period. I also believe its natures way of telling us to calm down and reflect for a minute.
5.) Creative Expression
This could sound bias because I'm an artist. But for me expressing myself feels very grounding, especially when my mind is in tangles. It's effortless. Art takes me to a meditative state. Writing lets me offload. They both calm me. How do you express yourself?
6.) Be PROUD
I always hid my true feelings in fear I sounded crazy and would be judged. Once I started speaking openly about my emotional and spiritual state, the whole world suddenly fell off my shoulders. It was the most relieving feeling. So now I continue to be open, honest and true to myself. That way I end up surrounded myself with like-minded people which is very rewarding. Your vibe attracts your tribe.
They're always listening. 💛
Now I'm older and more confident with my spiritual identity. I'm grateful I have found a ritual that works for me. I work part-time in an industry with similar values and beliefs (natural health) and I work as a self-employed artist. I purposely built a way to create income and stability that fits with who I am as an empath, a wahine, and as a mother.
It's 2019 - money is important so we can sustain and provide. I understand that 100%. Sacrifices often need to be made during our progress to the top. So if you're in a position where you can create a lifestyle that fits with your SOUL - Do it! 🌙
In the meantime, your anxiety is a gift in disguise. Do not avoid your true calling. It will keep flying around you in this life and the next until you let it in. We are IN TUNED. ✨
WAKE UP. 🔮