Thursday, December 23, 2010

Arrogance & Empathy: Learning To Look Beneath The Facade

Arrogance

Arrogance....it's a topic we all have to contend with once in a while.  In our daily lives we come face to face with it often enough, whether it is from others or from ourselves.  Let's explore this topic a bit and see what it has to do with being an Empath or more simply, being empathic toward others.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Empath Issues

Recently I got asked to explain a subject most Empaths and HSPs don't really like to touch on. This is because if it is openly spoken about, it can make them feel like frauds sometimes. But in understanding the reality of this particular topic, after the initial shock, it can ultimately help you grow in your abilities and in your own self awareness, both of which are so important when interacting with the world around you as a highly sensitive/empathic person.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Journey To Now

I can remember sitting on my bed one day and contemplating the word Empath.  I was 16 then.  Mind you, this was before the advent of a computer in every household, much less having internet access to social websites like facebook and/or twitter.  Finding information about Empaths and empathy was hard to come by.  And the information I found called it nothing more than a lesser, primitive form, of telepathy, and ranked it the lowest of the low on the psychic scale of gifts/abilities.

There were no lists of traits for Empaths.  There were no comparative experiences to view my own experiences through.  There wasn't much of anything at all, except that one single entity on television named Deanna Troi, from Star Trek.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cog In the Machine

Part One: Cog In the Machine

Despite their negative effect on the environment, automobiles are really quite beautiful machines. They are constructed of dozens of different systems, all working in tandem, all contributing something to keep the greater machine operating at peak efficiency. Each system can further be broken into hundreds of various belts, liquid injection systems, crankshafts and flywheels. Each of these, in turn, can be broken down into their base components- the rods, nuts and bolts that keep each individual system in prime working condition.

If so much as a single bolt fails, the entire machine is jeopardized, yet if every piece of the vehicle is working perfectly, there is no limit to where the vehicle may go. In a way, automobiles are the toughest, most durable invention of mankind... And also the most fragile and flawed. So much can go wrong with the inner workings of a vehicle- a loose belt here, a clogged fuel pump there- yet when every piece is working in tandem, at their fullest potential, the sky is quite literally the limit.

You may be wondering where I'm going with this. After all, this is supposed to be a site dedicated to self-improvement, not vehicle maintenance... And I sincerely hope anyone reading this is wise enough to not take maintenance advice from me. Although this is a topic that has been covered extensively on this site, I feel it is time to throw my own hat into the ring, so to speak, and share my own opinions on this particular subject.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Abused Empath

Someone recently asked me an interesting question that got me pondering.  They said, "What are the long term effects of abuse and how do they tie into being an Empath?".  Now in this question, they did not stipulate what type of abuse, or to what age group, in particular.  It was a very general question, even though they later pinpointed more specific questions, based on their own experiences.  But out of respect, I will skip the sharing of that particular information.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Call To Contentment

Before you can love someone else, you have to learn to love yourself. Before you can help another, you must first help yourself. This is a point I've repeated time and time again, to the point where I'm sure some people want to throw something at me if I even think about mentioning it again. Well, ready your tomatoes, shoes or gelatinous chat trolls, because I'm saying it one more time.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Leap Of Faith

What is Faith?  There are a number of definitions for it.  So let's look at some of them:

Faith:
  1. religion, faith, religious belief:  a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny "he lost his faith but not his morality"
  2. faith, trust: complete confidence in a person or plan etc "he cherished the faith of a good woman"; "the doctor-patient relationship is based on trust"
  3. religion, faith, organized religion: an institution to express belief in a divine power "he was raised in the Baptist religion"; "a member of his own faith contradicted him"
  4. faith: loyalty or allegiance to a cause or a person "keep the faith"; "they broke faith with their investors"
So for the purposes of this discussion we will break it down and simply say that Faith is the confident belief or trust in the truth or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing.

Now, when you hear the word Faith, the first thought that might jump to mind is Religion, whatever religion it may be. It may bring to mind a Deity, whatever deity it may be.  And for some, of a more intellectual and/or scientific bent, it might bring about some skepticism in the idea of having faith in something unseen or unknown, without proof in hand.  And while all of those are interesting, we are not going to explore religion in this blog.  Nor are we going to debate the scientific vs. spiritual mindsets when it comes to faith, because those arguments generally center around religion.

Instead we are going to delve into a broader sense of what Faith is and how we utilize it in a day to day kind of way.  And then we are going to explore the impact Faith has on Empaths.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Nostalgia

"Teddy told me that in Greek, nostalgia literally means, 'the pain from an old wound'."

So let's take a look at nostalgia, old wounds, our memories, and the places we go in our minds.

The definition of nostalgia, according to wikipedia:

The term nostalgia describes a yearning for the past, often in idealized form. The word is a learned formation of a Greek compounds, consisting of νόστος, nóstos, "returning home", a Homeric word, and ἄλγος, álgos, "pain" or "ache".

Sometimes it is brought on by a sudden image, or remembrance of something from one's childhood.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Developing Empathy

On this blogsite, we've talked about all kinds of gifts.  We've shown you ways to enhance those abilities, as well.  So, considering this is a site meant to help teach Empathy,  I thought it'd be a good idea to do a blog on developing the gift of Empathy.

Now, one might ask the question "Why cultivate Empathy?", because some people find the gift of Empathy harrowing and difficult to cope with/manage.  But developing Empathy through these tools does not necessarily mean you will become an Empath who is hypersensitive to the emotions/emotional states of others.  This is simply a means to cultivate what is already within you...your Empathic Nature, which everyone is born with whether they are an Empath or not.

So let's start out by looking at some of the benefits of cultivating the gift of Empathy and move on from there.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Mental Telepathy & The Empath

When one thinks of Empathy and Empaths, sometimes one can not help but move over to the idea of telepathy.  Telepathyalso known as thought-tranference, is the transfer of information through thoughts or feelings between individuals by means other than the five senses. A telepath is a person with the paranormal ability to read others' thoughts and mental contents. 

Now what does this have to do with being an Empath?  Telepathy can be considered another level of Empathy. It is one that incorporates not just feelings and emotions, but also actual thoughts, as well.  So one could surmise that telepathic communication, instead of just empathic communication, gives one a broader and much fuller picture of what is going on inside someone because it is not just a sharing of emotions, which can, at times, seem to have no specific direction.  It is the feelings along side actual thoughts, which tend to include situations from the past.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Video Resources For Empaths

So, as always, I'm on the prowl for information, videos, and tools that can help Empaths in their development and growth. And in that pursuit, I found these lovely videos. This series is called: Empaths: Keepers of the Heartlight. Watch them at your leisure, if you feel like it. ^_^

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Unconscious Motivations: The Secret Life Of An Empath

Let's talk about hidden motivations. What are they? How do they apply to us, as people and as Empaths?

Motivation is defined as the psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a desired goal; the reason for the action; that which gives purpose and direction to behavior. In simpler terms, it is what inspires us to act.

This can take specific forms such as incentive, like a prize, or punishment, as in the denial of privileges. It can also be based in less tangible forms like desires, dreams, needs and wants.

Examples:

1. Incentive: If I get good grades on my report card, I will be given money to spend how I wish.
2. Punishment: If I rob a bank, I could end up in jail.
3. Dreams: If I goto school for x amount of time and study these subjects, I can get my dream job.
4. Needs: I must work in order to buy food and have a roof over my head.
5. Wants/Desires: I want a new car, so I must work to save money for that dream.

Motivations can be obvious and straight forward, like these examples, which are aroused in the conscious mind where one is fully aware of them. Or motivations can be hidden.

Now, when we say hidden, what first jumps to mind is that the motivations are completely hidden from self, that is, it exists within the unconscious mind and has no direct impact on the conscious mind's awareness and behaviors. Another way to put it is that the conscious mind has absolutely no awareness of these unconscious motivations which drive them to enact certain behaviors. But, beneath the auspice of 'hidden motivations' which so often lay within the subconscious mind, there are motivations which the conscious mind perceives, if only in a peripheral sense.

So let's explore these ideas and then look at how they can impact someone who is hypersensitive and Empathic.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Self Expectation

I haven't written anything for quite some time. There are several reasons for this, but the main reason is simply that I could not think of anything worthy of writing.

I've also just spent quite a bit of time just thinking. And then I realized something. I had this great view of my next blog, an amazing topic that causes each and every reader to have the biggest epiphany of their life. That's what I wanted. That was my goal. And that was my intent.

And I never felt 'up' to the task of meeting that goal. It was a tough goal to try to meet. And each time I came up with a topic for a blog, it wasn't good enough. It wouldn't have that power I needed and wanted. So the blog was never written.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Personal Responsibility, Accountability & The Empath

Let's talk about personal responsibility, particularly as an Empath. To do this, first we must understand what responsibility is, so lets define it.

Responsibility

1. The state, quality, or fact of being responsible.
2. Something for which one is responsible; a duty, obligation, or burden.

So according to these definitions, responsibility is about accountability. And in the case of personal responsibility, it is about accountability to yourself. What this means is that one takes responsibility for one's life, one's words, one's actions and one's behaviors.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Longing

Longing....it's an interesting word, isn't it?  It simply means: a strong persistent yearning or desire, especially one that cannot be fulfilled. To yearn for something, to desire it, to long for it like nothing else in the world.  But when you get beneath the definition of the word, it raises within a person all kinds of things...memories, unfulfilled yearnings, instant gratification, pleasure, joy, envy, guilt, shame and even anger.  That word alone, longing, can take you on a journey deep into yourself through your past, present, and even into the future.

I used to feel this pang of longing echoing through me...of loneliness...for freedom...for love....for understanding.  I longed for a place to rest my weary head after a long and painful journey.  I longed for a sanctuary to call  my own....a light in the darkness.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Empathy In Diversity

Sometimes it can extremely hard to understand another person. This is particularly true when one comes up against cultural and/or religious differences, as well as, language barriers in a more international setting. But, this can also be the case within singular communities and local settings.

Take the United States, for instance. It is a country full of many different cultures, religions, languages, and moral mindsets. Within it, one does not even have to leave it's borders to come upon all kinds of diversity. So the question becomes, how do we show empathy through diversity, despite it's differences, situation and setting? How do we interact with others so that everyone feels as though they have been offered equal consideration and respect? And how do we stymie our own cultural/religious/moral mindsets, that tend to color our perceptions of the world around us and can sometimes prejudice us against others for any perceived differences, as we interact with such the diverse group of people that surround us? Let's look at this closer, shall we?


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Empaths In Love: Through The Eyes Of The Empath

One of the biggest questions I get asked about pertains to Empaths in romantic relationships, Empaths in love, as it were. And as I listen to many people describe their situations to me, I often note a trend that is common for quite a few people. This trend begins with the personality of the Empath, so let's explore that in a bit more detail first before we move on to the main focus of this blog.

An Empath is one who tends to be categorized as a healer, a counselor, a friend, a natural nurturer, and a people pleaser. They are gentle, soft spoken, caring, and give of themselves without reserve...even to their own detriment at times. They are observant and hypersensitive to the needs, wants and desires of others. And they have a wish to avoid conflict through mediation.(Note: this is a generalized assessment of Empath traits and does not speak to everyone)

At the heart of this description, there is more to be seen beneath the surface, though. Often times people who exhibit these kinds of behaviors also carry with them a very low sense of their own self worth. With very low self esteem, they are prone to bouts of depression, isolation, anxiety, and codependency on others.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Art Of Being An Empath: Empathy & Assertiveness

Empathy is defined as the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner. In other words, Empathy is the ability to share in another person's experiences, perceptions and emotions.

There is an art to being empathetic toward others. This is because it takes great compassion for another person to willingly step away from their own personal perceptions of the world, essentially setting aside their ego, enough to step into another person's perceptions of the world, which include emotional levels, physical levels, and intellectual levels. The willingness to do this, as much as the actual ability to do this, take great conviction, because it then asks the person empathizing to open themselves up to a whole new way of seeing the world, through someone else's eyes.

Assertiveness is defined as being confident and direct in claiming one's rights or putting forward one's views. In other words, Assertiveness is simply standing up for yourself, speaking up for your rights, and effectively expressing your wishes, ideas and concerns. But in doing this, one does it with consideration to others through the act of being respectful of other people's personal boundaries and emotions.

There is an art to being assertive. This is because it is a kind of balancing act between being considerate and respectful of other people's feelings and your own needs. It is very distinct from being passive and aggressive because of this dual focus of balancing your needs with those of others.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Toxic People: Recognizing & Dealing With Them

One of the biggest issues people, that I've run into, sometimes have, as Empaths, is that of dealing with Toxic People.  I've heard topics as wide ranging as the types of people they draw to themselves who they feel are toxic to their own inability to deal with these kinds of people.  I've heard them talk about feelings of anxiety, fear, stress, anger, judgment, depression, hopelessness and more negatively charged emotions, that they either feel from the other person pressing in on them or tend to begin to emulate through long term interaction with these types of people.  And I've watched as long term interaction with such toxic types of people have cause others to change their perception of the world; morphing it into one of apathy, prejudice and/or judgment.

Now, with that being said, I would say this it is an unavoidable truth that when certain types of personalities come together, they do not mesh well.  Some are naturally more dominating, aggressive, assertive, and/or predatory than others.While others are more passive and are easily dominated in during an interaction.  And while it may seem to onlookers as though they mesh well on the surface, one tending to be more submissive while the other more dominant, this is often not the case.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Empathic Shielding Resources

In the blog Empaths: Psychic Defense, Shielding and More we explored ideas of psychic defense, grounding, centering and shielding, as well as, tools to help further these pursuits. In this blog, we will explore this topic a bit more with resources specifically meant for Empaths.

Feel free to use them or not, because some of these things might work better for you than others. So only utilize the things that you feel comfortable with doing.

Inner Demons Of Empathy: Gift Or Curse?

When you think of demons, you probably think of things that stalk the night, haunt houses, and torment people. You probably get goosebumps as you imagine the evil. You might even think about evil incarnate, or the Devil (if you believe in such an entity).

And you would be right to have some innate fear of such things. They are the unknown. They are the things hidden in the shadows and darkness, that can potentially hurt us. And the very word 'demon' screams danger, doesn't it? It causes warning bells to go off in your head that make you want to push away from it. And that's normal.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Assumptions & Realities Of Empathy

I had a friend recently, who thought she knew more about my life than I did. She thought she saw all of my problems and issues wrapped neatly into a psychological evaluation. And as a friend, she decided I needed to know this and proceeded to drop a 'harsh reality' bomb on me. And she made sure to let me know, as she did this, that she did it because she loved me.

Now this friend is not a psychologist. Nor did I solicit her for this purpose. She took it upon herself to 'evaluate me' and upon the assumption that I didn't have a clue about my own life, proceeded to let me know in the harshest terms possible that my life boils down to a mental health issue.

One problem with this is that it was based on the assumption that I do not have a grasp on the realities of my own life. It was assumed that instead of facing my realities...my issues, I run away from them, hiding away online. It wasn't even conceived that I might have a full grasp on my life, my issues or my reality. And that can be a huge mistake, when one underestimates another person, in the midst of assuming things about that person.

Another problem with this is that there was no empathy in it's evaluation or delivery. There was no real attempt at understanding my life, my knowledge or my understanding beneath the obeliscal walls of her psychological evaluation, in which my life had been summarily categorized and placed. Empathy for someone entails attempting to understand these things about another person, even when they are making an assessment of another person.

So I am left to wonder, where is the love that this was all supposed to be wrapped in? My sense tells me that this rose out of someone's assumptions and frustrations with their personal life, rather than any attempt to offer support, guidance, empathy or healing.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Synchroncities Of Life

I woke up one morning and felt a strange sense of purpose that day. I couldn't put my finger on it...because that feeling was fleeting and elusive. So I got up, like I would any other day and went about my morning routine.

I got ready for the day and got my kids ready for their day at school. I prepared breakfast. And then, when the time came, I took them to school as I had always done. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary up till that point.

After I dropped the kids off at school, as I sat in the car at a stop light, I had this sudden feeling. I knew the light was going to change exactly when it did. I can't tell you how I knew, but it did change.

Now that is something one could blow off as random with a momentary 'huh...interesting' and then moving on. But it didn't stop there that day. Small things like that continued to happen throughout the day.

I sat in the car later thinking about an issue I had been contemplating for some time and a part of me wished that there would be some response...from deity...from the universe...from the higher self that was me....from where ever. And as I looked up, I saw a hawk circling overhead, as though it waited for my notice. I heard it call at that moment and it sent shivers down my spine. And then I watched as it slowly disappeared into the distance.

Again, this could be taken as something random. I could have sat there and thought nothing of this hawk except 'Wow....pretty!' and moved on with my day, still feeling as though there was no comfort...no answer to my beckoning. But I didn't....I felt warm and comforted. And even though I had no resolution to the issue, I felt as though I could tackle it with new vigor simply because I felt supported in some small way. And in that moment, it didn't feel random at all. It felt as though it was meant for me and me alone.

I went inside and sat at my computer. I opened my email and there was another random message....which on the surface seemed like spam. But upon opening it my eyes were assaulted with pictures of blessings and love. And again I felt as though it were something sent to me when I needed it most. Random spam didn't seem so random after all.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Empaths: Cruelty & Forgiveness

When I was growing up, I had alot of issues in my life.  Some were severe, while others were simply perceived as severe through my adolescent mind.  A single word had the power to slice me to the core, particularly if it came from those I depended on: family, friends and/or lovers.

Socially I tended to gravitate toward people who were also 'different'.  In this case, it was people who were labeled as 'rejects'.  This included the role-players, the goths, the pagans, the emos, the drug addicts, the alcoholics, the sexually promiscuous people.  The reason why I was drawn to people like this is because we shared a common bond, despite our differences.  That is, all of us had been abused in some way or another.  All of us suffered from severe low self esteem.  And we huddled together, dysfunctionally supporting one another, because our realities were so painful that we couldn't bear to face them head on alone.

But even this group had a tendency to be fickle at times.  I remember one incident wherein my boyfriend came to my door late at night and told me he was running away to kill himself.  I had just joined that particular group and didn't know him all that well, so I panicked and told my parents.  They made me call the police to report it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Empathy: A Level Of Perception

Perception is a very merry splendid thing....lol...it's also very individual. People can view the exact same thing, and end up seeing and interpreting those things differently from one another. Of course, sometimes that's a little hard to swallow because we tend to work under the premise that everyone thinks as we do. What is obvious to us is obvious to others, as well. But sadly, that's generally not the case.

Now, what might this have to do with empathy? Hmm...I wonder. Empathy is about interpretation. It is the observation of subtle nuances and interpretation of emotions, non-verbal communication like body language and microexpressions, voice pitch/hue, linguistics (words chosen when speaking or writing and how they are used). It is the human body's use of all of its senses to interpret another person's moods, situation, issues, and to understand that....through one's own perception filter and point of view.

Friday, July 2, 2010

The Fragility Of The Human Spirit

There is a fragility to the human psyche. There is always a limit...a breaking point...which we all have where we surrender and collapse under the weight of the things burdening us. It can be instantaneous or it can take many years to press down so hard we finally let the tears flow. It's that singular moment when we stop being stoic...fighting the good fight...and stop bottling up everything inside us...and just let go.

To cry...until you are spent of tears and emotions. To scream the emotions at the world without restraint. To let wave after wave of sorrow, anger, resentment, and pain flow out of you. To allow yourself to be set awash in those things you have kept at bay for so long.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Religion, Spirituality, Faith & The Empath

This is a tough subject...probably because it touches so many of us at such a deep level.  Our spiritual beliefs are ones we hold close to our hearts and guard ardently.  They help define us and give our lives focus, meaning and purpose both as individuals and as communities.

And Empaths...well they come in all shapes and sizes when it comes to spiritual beliefs, from Christians to those who follow a more new age/metaphysical spiritual belief system...the range is endless.  You name it...and there is probably an Empath mixed in there somewhere.

Sitting here and thinking how best to say what I'm thinking...I think to myself that I can't tell you what to believe.  Because, in my own humble opinion, there is no right or wrong path...simply many paths to choose from.  But even that belief, the one that is mine, I do not wish to thrust on you.

And if I'm honest with...myself...and everyone else...I probably don't even want to touch this subject because its so diverse and open to heated debate.  And I have such deep respect for all faiths and spiritual beliefs, that....yeah, I don't wish to cause controversy.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Empaths & PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)

"Trauma is so ingrained in us over time, it's hard to change the way we think." This is what someone said to me while we were talking about soldiers over in Afghanistan and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome). He went on to say, though, that it was doable....changeable with time.

And it got me thinking, yes about Soldiers, but more to the point...anyone who has suffered through long term trauma. Being someone who has suffered through something like that myself, I guess it struck a cord deep inside me. So I thought I'd offer you a fact sheet on PTSD.

You might be wondering what this has to do with being an Empath. But if you think about it, it's extremely reasonable, because alot of Empaths (not all by any means....but quite a few) come by their hypersensitivity through conditioning in their developmental years. What that means is that alot of Empaths have been abused in some way to cause them to be as hypersensitive as they are.

So this topic, like so many others on this blogsite, is an important one to take note of.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

An Empath's Perspective On Self Esteem, Inner Demons, & You

I think one of the biggest issues I had growing up was people telling me what was wrong with me.  Sure, there was also reinforcement of the positive things but....those things always seemed to get drowned out by the negative ones.

Some of those things were parental nagging.  You know the kind, "You are lazy!" or "Why can't you do better in school?".  Some were from friends who thought they knew me so well they could tell me exactly what was wrong with me, "You are a know-it-all!" or "You are so mean!".  (And yes, even I can be mean...lol)

The point here is that none of these people meant to do me any lasting harm with their words, because they certainly didn't mean to.  But what they didn't realize is that I had internal issues with self esteem which made every little negative comment hit me like an arrow to the heart that got repeated over and over again like a mantra in my head.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Confidence & Humility: A Lesson In Compassionate Empathy

Confidence and humility....two words that do not appear to be synonymous, much less have anything to do with Empathy or Empaths.  But let's delve a little deeper into this subject and see what we find.

First lets look at some definitions.  And then we'll move on to the deeper discussion.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Purpose Of Being An Empath

Let's talk about the purpose of being an Empath, because this seems to be a topic that alot of people have questions about. And we tend to find our answers in a myriad of places, some more reputable than others, as well as, some with the best of intentions and some...not so much.

First, let's be honest. Being an Empath is hard at even the best of times. Learning to cope with a flood of emotional undercurrents flowing all around you, not to mention into and out of you, can be mind numbing at times. Standing at the edge of a crowd and looking out can feel like having to cross an ocean with only your fingers crossed to keep you from drowning.

And this doesn't even begin to speak to how deeply you feel your own emotions and issues, does it? Those, coupled with the continual onslaught of emotions from elsewhere, can make you want to crawl into a closet or move to a cave and never come out.  It can make you feel like a hermit sometimes, secluding yourself away from the rest of society so you don't have to deal with that emotional weight that makes you feel like you will shatter.

Now, what is my point in bringing this up in a blog about the purpose of being an Empath?  Well, to find your purpose you have to first see and acknowledge what is going on in your life: the pain, your issues, the hypersensitivity that is overwhelming you.  So this part of the discussion holds an important place in discovering your true purpose as an Empath.  But I also know its one of the hardest parts, as well, because this is the one thing we struggle with the most.  It's also one of the biggest things we want to hide from the most, so we can focus on being happy...or at least appearing happy to the world around us as we struggle inside.

The Importance Of Being Earnest

In deciphering a purpose for yourself its of the utmost importance that you be earnest with yourself.  Because being an Empath doesn't mean you have a set course in front of you, as though you are starring down the barrel of a gun.  There is no inevitable outcome, as well.

What you most need to understand is that being an Empath doesn't preclude you from being anything else.  If you wish to be a doctor, then be a doctor.  If you wish to be a writer, then be a writer.  The point is, the natural talents and innate traits of an Empath will shine through in whatever you do, so you need not limit your scope of purpose to something that doesn't fit your own dreams and desires.  You don't have to set those things aside to follow a course of supposed altruism and outreach, because outreach can happen in all kinds of ways ~ even simply by writing a blog to offer information, support and comfort to others.  ^_^

Life doesn't have to be a struggle, as you attempt to fit your purpose into an ideal someone else imposed on you.  Take the idea of Buddhism and seeking enlightenment, or a higher state of being, and then understand I am saying this as a Buddhist.  You don't have to strive for that because someone else told you that is the purpose of an Empath, in any variation it might come in.

All you ever need to do is find what works for you and strive toward that.  And if it is Buddhism or enlightenment, more power to you.  If not, whatever it is, is equally good because it's what is right for you.  Because your purpose isn't about anyone else, anyone else's ideas of right and wrong, or anyone else's thoughts on the ideal purpose.  It's about you, what you want, and what you feel drawn to do with your life.

The only one who can set limits on that purpose is you.  So above all else, remember that.  There are limitless possibilities for you.  All you have to do is open yourself to them, because they are waiting for you.

The Hermit Of The Tarot

On a side note, I thought it'd be interesting to introduce you to the Hermit of the Tarot and what it means. Perhaps you will find some meaning in what I'm going to quote. Perhaps not. Either way....enjoy. ^_^

The Hermit

In The Hermit card, the 9th card of the Tarot, the teachers of the Ageless Wisdom are providing us with a future view of the outcome of our soul's successful struggle to reach the highest level of earthly/spiritual enlightenment possible... an attainment that is attributable to and obtainable through continued discipline, diligence and dedication to the laws of Divine living.


As we view the card, most of us get a sense that The Hermit is an isolated, solitary being, one who prefers a private existence apart from the extravagance and superficiality of materialistic living. Largely that's true, but the real message he wishes to impart is just how important it is for you and I (if we wish to reach his level of attainment) to set our values above materialism's fascinations and temporal attunements. Notice that he is pictured standing on the highest peak among the surrounding mountains. In his right hand he holds a lantern which appears to be lighting his way. Actually, the lantern's light is intended for seekers, others like you and I, who are still climbing and struggling up the mountainside below him. Notice that he is looking down, watching our progress. According to Carl Jung he is very concerned and most protective of our efforts. He is really that part of us, the Divine within, that is ready to provide us instant direction and truth. We havebut to go within... to ask for healing, guidance or forgiveness. For all who seek, loving support and enrichment will be returned to you many fold.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

What Is An Empath? Are There Empath Traits?

On this blogsite we've described what an Empath is numerous times using different methods. We've also found numerous ways to define Empathy, as well. But while we've used definitions, trait lists, examples, and so on to help elucidate what an Empath is, we've never really sat down and talked about what kind of people Empaths really are. (Forgive me if I'm mistaken on this, because there is so much information on this website even I forget some of the things I've written about...lmao).

What is an Empath? Let's talk about it. It feel like a HUGE question, particularly for this blogsite and its overall purpose.

What Is An Empath?

An Empath is someone who tends to be hypersensitive to the emotions and emotional states of others. But in saying this it does not mean an Empath will actually be empathic/empathetic toward others. It simply means they are more sensitive to the emotional undercurrents that surround them than other people.

An Empath is often someone who can be associated with other titles like HSP (Highly Sensitive Person) and INFJ. What are these other ideas?

Well an HSP is a person, who comprise about a fifth of the population, having the innate trait of high psychological sensitivity and may process sensory data much more deeply and thoroughly due to a biological difference in their nervous systems.

An INFJ, which is defined off of a Personality Test developed by Carl Jung, is defined thusly:

  • I – Introversion preferred to Extraversion: INFJs tend to be quiet and reserved. They generally prefer interacting with a few close friends rather than a wide circle of acquaintances, and they expend energy in social situations (whereas extraverts gain energy).
  • N – Intuition preferred to Sensing: INFJs tend to be more abstract than concrete. They focus on the big picture rather than the details, and on future possibilities rather than immediate realities.
  • F – Feeling preferred to Thinking: INFJs tend to value personal considerations above objective criteria. When making decisions, they often give more weight to social implications than to logic.
  • J – Judgment preferred to Perception: INFJs tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability.

But I digress, you see even beyond these things empathy can be broken down into 3 basic ideas: Cognitive Empathy, Emotional Empathy, and Compassionate Empathy.

  • Cognitive Empathy: we recognize what another person is feeling
  • Emotional Empathy: we actually feel what the person is feeling
  • Compassionate Empathy: we want to help the person deal with their situation and emotions

To understand what an Empath really is, you need to understand these 3 simple ideas. This is because Empaths come in all shapes and sizes. They come with all kinds of different personality types. And they exhibit different levels of Empathy, just like normal people.

I had a friend recently tell me about how she described what an Empath is to a psychology friend. And she said basically it was empathy x 10. And while I agree the hypersensitivity an Empath experiences to emotional undercurrent around them is excessive sometimes, I don't believe the actual Empathy an Empath experiences is any more or less than anyone else at the Compassionate Empathy level. That is....unless they choose to make it so.

You see, the reason this becomes a choice is because of something called Empathic Concern. What is it?

Empathic concern refers to other-oriented emotions elicited by and congruent with the perceived welfare of someone in need. These other-oriented emotions include feelings of tenderness, sympathy, compassion, soft-heartedness, and the like. Empathic concern is often and wrongly confused with empathy.

To empathize is to respond to another's perceived emotional state by experiencing feeling of a similar sort. Empathic concern or sympathy not only include empathizing, but also entails having a positive regard or a non-fleeting concern for the other person.

Human beings are strongly motivated to be connected to others. In humans and other higher mammals, an impulse to care for offspring is almost certainly genetically hard-wired, although modifiable by circumstance.


A person can choose to show concern for another person, to in essence empathize with their plight and reach out a helping hand. They can also choose to walk on by and do nothing. And I would be remiss to say that either is the right choice, despite what might seem the obvious choice, because it's all about personal choice. And in that, we all must do what is right for us and not what is considered right by society and thrust upon us.

Traits Of An Empath

So are there traits of an Empath? Well, sure there are. But they are generic and fit any number of people who might have other problems and/or issues. I'll show you some:

16 Common Traits Of An Empath

1. Empaths are quiet achievers but expressive in area's of emotional connection. They find that talking about emotional issues is a great outlet that aids in understanding themselves and others.

2. Some empaths can be the opposite of what an empath 'should' be because they are overwhelmed or unable to handle emotion and what they feel in the world around them so they block their feelings.

3. They can be focused outward, toward what others feel, rather than themselves. This is a common trait to many people who have not gone through a process of self development.

4. They avoid disharmony caused by emotionally turbulent situations. This type of situation can easily create an uncomfortable feeling because an empath feels this emotion.

5. Empaths are emotionally sensitive to violence and general chaos.

6. Empaths are sensitive to loud noise and television. In particular, television programs that depict emotional drama like the news and police shows.

7. They struggle to comprehend acts of cruelty and crime that involves hurting others.>
8. They struggle to comprehend suffering in the world and are often idealists who theorize about fixing the worlds problems.

9. Are often found working as volunteers, with people, animals or the environment.

10. They are expressive so they can often be found in areas of music or the arts.

11. They often have the ability to draw others to them. This includes children and animals as they have a warmth and compassion that is beyond normal You may find that strangers always talk to you if you are an Empath.

12. They can be good listeners as they generally have an interest in other people.

13. Empaths can be moody or have large mood swings due to overwhelming thoughts, feelings and emotion.

14. They are likely to have had, other paranormal experiences in their life. This could be astral projection, psychic ability or a variety of other experiences.

15. Empaths are daydreamers that have difficulty keeping focused. This is common with people who deal more IN emotion and neglect other area's of their mind.

16. Like many people on a spiritual path Empaths frequently experience déjà vu and synchronicities. This is something that occurs to everyone however empaths are often more aware and therefore 'look out' for it.


These are some general traits of an Empath as described by the author of them, Aymen Fares. Are they wrong? Certainly not. But do they describe every kind of person who can be an Empath? No, they don't.

What are the real traits of an Empath?

Empaths come by their hypersensitivity in numerous ways. Some, sadly quite a few, come by it through being abused. Does this mean all Empaths are abused? No, not at all. But you see, when a person is consistantly in a state of fear of being harmed, particularly in their formative years (5-12 yrs old), the mind will find ways to cope with this. One way this occurs is by developing a sensitivity to the person who is harming them so that they are able to gauge that person's moods and temperaments. This ability can carry over into adulthood, even if the abuse stopped a long time ago. And it can become quite debilitating, bringing on bouts of high anxiety, agoraphobia, depression and other issues.

Empaths aren't just hypersensitive to the emotional undercurrents around them. They can also be highly emotional people themselves. And when in this state its easy to lose ability to discern where the Empath's emotions end and another person's emotions begin. Often times Empath's are highly prone to something called Emotional Contagion. Emotional Contagion is the tendency to catch and feel emotions that are similar to and influenced by those of others.

Empaths can have a very deep seeded fear of intimacy of any kind. And this can even translate into the bedroom. Intensity of feeling, due to hypersensitivity plus past issues of possible abuse, can cause them to push away from this desperately. But understand, it's not that they don't want to be loved, cherished, or to experience passion.

Empaths can use a form of escapism to leave behind the sharp edges of their harsh reality. Sometimes this is found in the metaphysical/new age arena. Spirits (even nasty ones), Soulmates, ideas like Christ Consciousness, Astral Projection, and a plethora of other ideas are easier to deal with than the reality that surrounds them on a daily basis. It acts as a kind of buffer that cushions them from the outside world and allows them to feel their own uniqueness.

Does this mean these things do not exist? No, it doesn't. I'm not here to judge the reality of such things and people's particular belief in them. I'm simply pointing out that sometimes these things can be used as a crutch to keep from dealing with their real issues.

Empaths can hold themselves to an extremely high standard calling themselves things like Lightworkers and Human Angels. And then they can set a purpose on themselves like fighting evil, the darkness, or people deemed as Psychic Feeders/Drainers, as though it is a war.

They can also focus outwardly so completely, as they go about helping people with their problems and being a salve to their emotional wounds, that they can completely forget about themselves in the process. And they can do this to the point of emotional exhaustion on their part. Even then, it can still feel like it's not enough.

These things tend to occur because alot of Empaths suffer from extremely low self esteem and find their value in serving others. And in moderation, this is a wonderful thing. But in excess, like anything else in life, it can be detrimental to the Empath.

Empaths can also be judgmental, cliquish, prejudicial, apathetic, drama queens, abusive, aggressive, and a whole bunch of other things to numerous to mention.

There is more I could write here, but even I admit as I reread this that it sounds slightly depressing, so I will refrain from adding more.

The main point I'm attempting to make here is that Empaths are human beings with human experiences, human emotions, human prejudices, and human issues. They suffer and they hurt. They can suffer from low self esteem. They can be as hateful as they can loving. And being an Empath doesn't mean that they will show empathic concern for others.

And while the first list of traits are indeed traits of an Empath, they aren't the only ones. They simply shine a light on the more positive aspects of being an Empath to entice you to adopt that title as your own. But being an Empath doesn't take away your real world problems. It doesn't set you apart from people. It doesn't make you different or special. It doesn't give you a greater or holier purpose than others. Only you can set yourself apart from or above others. And if you are honest with yourself, how does that offer others empathy when you do that?

Think about it.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Empath Credo & 24 Things To Always Remember

**If you wish to seem them in a larger format, please feel free to click on them to open them up in another tab/page to see them at their original size.**



The Empath Credo 



24 Things To Always Remember

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Empaths: Psychic Defense, Shielding, & More

Some of the biggest questions I get when I work with people are things like "How do I defend myself from eventually feeling drained?", "How do I shield?", and "Are there other things I can do beyond simply shielding?". So I thought I'd touch on this topic a little bit and offer you some links to different sites that I've found have helpful information and techniques.

Now these are, by far, not the only methods and techniques available to you. And you should never try something that makes you uncomfortable, because what works for one person might not work for another. And that's okay, because this is, first and foremost, all about you.

So lets look at topics like Psychic Defense and Grounding/Centering/Shielding. And then follow up with things like techniques for purifying and cleansing like smudging, stone usages for warding off negativity, and then oils/herbs.

Despite the source from which these links come, the techniques themselves can carry great value in your search for the ability to help yourself. I hope this helps. ^_^

Psychic Protection and Defense:


Grounding ~ Centering ~ Shielding:


Smudging and Cleansing :


Gem Stone Meanings


Herb Meanings


Oil Meanings (Aromatherapy)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Empaths: Gossip & Rumors

Let me ask you a question.  Have you ever had someone bend over, as you were sitting down going about your business, and whisper in your ear?  No....not romantically.  They are the bearers of  juicy news about someone you both know.  But whether or not it's true, or how much of it is true for that matter, is uncertain.

What was your reaction to what was being whispered to you?  Did you smile and laugh? Did you think something along the lines of, "Yeah, he/she WOULD do that!" or "They are such a Bitch/Bastard!"?  In other words, did you agree with the opinions expressed alongside the juicy bit of news being passed on?  Was it funny? Did you feel like the person being gossiped about deserved it?

Alot of the time, when this happens it's intent is harmless enough.  People talk and generally, when they do,  they talk about the people they have in common with one another.  And the information gets stored in the brain as 'hmm interesting information' to be forgotten or only vaguely remembered later on.

Other times, gossip can take hold and be passed from person to person getting worse and worse as it travels from mouth to ear to mouth.

Have you ever played a game, or heard of a game, where kids sit in a circle and one person starts with a single statement like 'the goose plays in the pond' and pass it around by whispering it into the ear of the person sitting next to them?
And as it travels from child to child, it statement mutates into something else.  Perhaps one child changes it from a goose to a duck.  And then another child changes it from a pond to a park.  And yet another child adds toys to it.  By the time it reaches the ears of the first child, it's completely different.  Well, that is essentially gossip.

But what is gossip specifically and what is it used for most of the time?  Hmm...let's see, shall we?

Gossip

What is gossip?

Gossip is idle talk or rumour, especially about the personal or private affairs of others. It forms one of the oldest and most common means of sharing (unproven) facts and views, but also has a reputation for the introduction of errors and other variations into the information transmitted. The term also carries implications that the news so transmitted (usually) has a personal or trivial nature, as opposed to normal conversation.

What function does gossip serve?
  • normalise and reinforce moral boundaries in a speech-community
  • foster and build a sense of community with shared interests and information
  • build structures of social accountability
  • further mutual social grooming (like many other uses of language, only more so)
  • provide a mating tool that allows (for example) women to mutually identify socially desirable men and compare notes on which men are better than others.
  • be used as a form of passive aggression, as a tool to isolate and harm others
  • provide a peer-to-peer mechanism for disseminating information in organizations

Are there different types of gossip?

Sure...let's look at some because some of them can be more harmful than others.

Gossip And Rumors: Different Types

Slander
  • Slander is when people spread rumors or lies about a person in order to purposely cause pain or damage. Maybe they want to see this person humiliated or turn others against him or her. They make up lies or pass on embarrassing rumors that probably aren’t true.
  • Most of the time, we only hear the word “slander” associated with adult conflicts, but it applies to young people as well.
  • When slander is in written form, it’s called libel. You’ve probably heard lots of stories about celebs suing tabloid newspapers because the papers have published libel against them. The celebs usually win!
  • Slander is one of the most dangerous types of rumors, because the whole point is to hurt somebody.
  • An example: “Teresa is a big cheat. She cheats off anyone she sits next to, so don’t ever sit near her.” This is hurtful to Teresa because not only is she being accused of doing something against the rules, her friends may stop sitting with her in class.
Dishing
  • You may hear people say, ”Give me the dish!” or “Let’s dish the dirt!” Dishing is another word for gossiping, and a kind of general spreading of rumors and gossip that people don’t usually think twice about.
  • It’s a little different than slander, because most of the time, people don’t dish with the aim of causing someone pain and humiliation. However, sometimes it does just that.
  • An example: “I asked Jenny what it was like to hold Andrew’s hand, and she said it was all clammy and sweaty.” This was probably an innocent question and answer driven by curiosity, but if it gets back to Andrew, he’ll feel totally embarrassed!
Fears or Concerns
  • Many rumors tap into people’s common fears, and this makes them sound true even though they usually are not.
  • These are often rumors that involve the threat of physical danger, the unknown and unfamiliar, and things that are gross or way-out weird.
  • An example: “I hear that the cafeteria meatloaf is made from rats they catch in the school basement.”
Jokes or Wild Stories
  • Sometimes rumors start out as silly jokes, then get spread around and changed over and over again. When lots of people are telling the same tale, it makes it seem more like the truth. You might think, “How can all these people be wrong?”
  • When these rumors last long enough and spread far enough, they actually become part of our culture, often called “Urban Legends,” “Modern Legends,” or “Urban Myths.”
  • An example: “Did you hear that when it’s halftime at the Super Bowl, water supplies across the U.S. get used up? It’s because of all the people going to the bathroom at the same time!”
Misinformation
  • Many rumors are just about people getting things wrong, or believing in exaggerations. Often people will swear up and down that they know something to be true when, in reality, they’re just passing on a rumor they’ve heard from someone.
  • An example of a rumor that’s just misinformation: “I heard that it’s okay to drive five miles an hour above the speed limit. The police can’t give you a ticket unless you go faster than that.” For the record, this is not true. The speed limit is the speed limit, but this rumor is so widespread that people often use it as an excuse with police officers who are writing them speeding tickets!
Cyber-Gossip
  • If you’ve ever heard something juicy in an online chat room or in an IM from a friend, you know that the Internet has made it easy to spread a rumor to lots of people with lightning-fast speed. “Cyber-gossip” can involve any of the other types mentioned here.
  • It’s easy for people to feel less responsible when starting a rumor online, especially if they’re able to do it anonymously. Remember that starting a rumor this way, or passing it on, can be even more damaging than if it’s done in person because of how many eyes it can reach in a short period of time.
  • A hurtful rumor that’s spread through cyber-gossip should be taken just as seriously as any other kind of rumor. 

So now that we understand what gossip is, its function, and the different types of gossip that exist, let me ask you this.  Have you ever been a victim of gossip or rumors?  Has anyone ever maligned your character?  How about sharing information  about you that gets taken out of context?

And how did that impact you?  Did it hurt?  Did it make people look at you differently?  Did it make you want to crawl into a hole and die of shame?

The vast majority of people in the world today, whether they answer truthfully or not, have probably been through some level of this issue and suffered for it. Contrary wise, though, the same amount can also be said to be the perpetrators of gossip and spreading rumors, as well.  Hmm...interesting isn't it?

Excuses For Gossip

Have you ever heard someone make an excuse for gossiping?  How about trying to deny it when they are confronted by an accusation of spreading rumors with ill intent?

And of course the excuses range from the simplest forms of "I didn't do it." to justifications of their right to do it, even by changing its name from something like gossiping to networking.

Alot of the time excuses are made because the people who spread rumors and gossip about others, when confronted about their behavior, feel some level of shame.  And they are generally caught off guard when an accusation occurs so they stammer out the first thing that pops into their minds.

Anything in this case could be used as a reasonable excuse, even biblical quotes. And this is done in order to justify the behavior they are being confronted about.

From there it's not a far cry for the person being confronted to jump into their actual reasons for the gossip.  This is a form of lashing out at the person confronting them, to shift the blame off themselves and onto the other person.

The thought occurs that if they can list all of the other person's sins, then their own behavior will be whitewashed in comparison or deemed more acceptable. 

This is, by far, not the only reaction one will get when one confronts another person about gossip.  But it is one of the most common reactions, as well.

Empaths and Gossip

Now, after reading all of this perhaps you are wondering what was the point? And honestly, what does this have to do with being an Empath, a person who is purported to be highly sensitive to the emotions and emotional states of others?  Well, let's explore that a bit.

Empaths, simply put, aren't above spreading rumors and gossiping about people, despite how sensitive they are to other people.  Because above being an Empath, they are people ~ human beings.  And since this is an issue of human nature and not one specific to just Empaths....well, it applies to all of us, Empath and Non-Empath alike.

Being an Empath doesn't keep you from being a victim of rumors anymore than it holds your tongue from speaking harshly about others or spreading rumors about them.  So as much as we, as Empaths, might wish to see ourselves above this, the reality is you aren't.  And that's the point of this discussion.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Fool's Paradise


This Title it self speaks about whom I am going to address in this post. Recently I came across a specific person who by some means found the word 'Empath'. One of her friends spoke to her about how she feels and how she found her inner self and how she educated herself. Now comes the real story, This acquaintance of mine researched all the material over the internet, read some books, blogs and articles and matched every thing and concluded that she is an Empath. I still find it difficult to digest the fact myself, as her empathic nature is very qualified and useful only for her selfish needs.


She bullies her parents and forces them to baby sit her kid and does not respect anyone. She can speak for hours about how empathic she is and how she cried over the news of a baby's death in local news paper. In reality she ignores the difficulties of everyone around and she thinks they should serve her. She can even make you think that we enjoy what ever we do for her and it is best for us.


She talks about all the topics she read online, as her own and presents herself as an Empath. And while in public she uses her memory power to mesmerize people with answers she read online. But none applies to her .. She only preaches and never follows. She can bring rolls of rules for what people should be doing for her. I even found her depressed and fearing at times for topics she read which she assumes will happen to her in a while. I can bet she hardly understands the difference between intuition and imagination.


She can positively tell everyone what the other is feeling and even picks out Empaths from the crowd and surprise them. She is proud of being an Empath now. Well the point is she is a kind of woman who can sit in a room and if feel depressed will start thinking that moon on her last day can make her cranky, and her cat is watching a ghost right now and if she is depressed she will curse her co worker for exerting  negative vibes which come right from that direction and at specific intervals.


I am not here to discuss the amount of sensitivity a person can have. But we must remember that our sensitivity is relative and with so many people and so much happening around, unless we are very certain, we should never reach to quick conclusions and judge people and imagine things.


By being an Empath is a special nature of understanding people and if willing and capable should help others and not to take advantage or imagine ourselves as angels walking on the land just above everyone else.


For some people the realities are different. They may be facing difficult times being unable to handle their own skills. They need guidance and proper direction. Those who are in real need please beware of this kind of fools who can even hug you and keep their hands on you saying they even can heal you. They don't even exert good intent or even can direct some positive energy towards you. Take time to truly identify the person. It is not by words that people can be identified. It is their constant behavior towards others and self that reveals their true identity. Only confess and trust people whom you know for years and whose Character and attitude is unbiased.

Being Emphatic is not a fashion statement. And it is true that people can possess skills even with all the bad qualities in them. But please read the posts in this blog properly and decide whether you are mature enough to be an Empath and know why you are embracing Empathy? It is not possible to have all the skills that are mentioned in this blog. The percentage is varied and subjective.


Being an Empath is not like having invisible wings and that we are extra special and we can treat others like 'the insignificant'. Many people who did n't yet embraced their own self are still among us unaware or not yet ready to accept the fact. We accepted the fact only means we are dutiful to ourselves and others. And it includes mature understanding of the facts. If you are one such fool My advice is, 'please humble yourself and some skills shine only with humility'.


Knowing the fact of being an Empath is like learning how to read. Now the whole school education is before us. We either can deny the whole thing or start our kindergarten today and please open your windows and see the fact of being alive in the real paradise.



Image source : http://www.davidhochbaum.com/

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Life: The Game Of Perception

The Unilateral Perspective

I want you to think about games you've played or seen in the past. You know the type, anything from games for the Nintendo on to the PS3 and Wii. Games where there is only one perspective at all times, and that is your own, despite what character is in play or what scenario is being played out at any given time. It's all about you and your connection with the game. It is a singular focus, or a unilateral perspective, despite the many scenarios and adventures, despite the different games or their generations.

If you have played any of these games, it conjures up memories, doesn't it? It takes you back to a moment in your life when you were someone else and the decisions you made had no impact on your real life, and all the impact in the world in the realm of the game you were focused on.

What you didn't realize, I'll bet, is that life is much like that. Mmm....yeah, life is like a game. We walk through our daily lives with singular focus, most of the time, on how things touch us and impact us on an emotional, physical, cognitive, and spiritual level. And we do this with every step we take, every choice we make, and every action we choose, and every interaction we encounter.

Much like the game, each of these things, choices and interactions, have an impact on what will happen next and how one cumulative experience will play out. And we generally do this by weighing our options. Is something worth doing, even if it has a bad result? Will this benefit me in some way to make it worth doing? Questions like that tend to play through our minds even when we do not consciously realize we are weighing our options. And just like in a single perspective game, much of what results from those choices, comes directly from you and your perception.

The Multilateral Perspective

Now I want you to think about another kind of game, where in hundreds to thousands of people are playing at any given time. Its called an Mmorpg game or Massively multiplayer online role-playing game, which if you couldn't tell from the name, is defined as a genre of computer role-playing games in which a very large number of players interact with one another within a virtual game world.

If you Google the term Mmorpg games, what you'll find is about 16,300,000 results for them (but that number is obviously subject to change at any time). Imagine how many countless game universes are out there. And with all of those virtual universes out there, imagine the choices you can make in the person you want to be. For that matter, imagine the massive amount of people you will randomly encounter within those worlds: some you might befriend, some you might meet randomly, some you might fight with, and some you might be partnered with to battle other foes. The list goes on and on, doesn't it? It's almost mind boggling.

But there is a point to this. This kind of game, as opposed to the singular focus and the unilateral perspective of the first type of game, is a multilateral perspective with a broadened focus base, because there is direct interaction between different players, who unlike the other kind of game were computer generated with preset conversations ready in hand, are backed up by real people who have their own unique points of view to add to the whole of that virtual world. That's a mouthful, I know. So, let's look at it a different way.

This kind of game can also be applied to real life, because even as we go about our daily lives it's not just our own point of view that makes up the whole of the world around us. The person next door has a point of view. Your partner, friends, and even family members, have their own perspectives, as well. And these are unique unto themselves, being completely separate from yours. When these differing points of view converge, be it in the real world or a virtual one, there can be anything from total agreement to outright disagreement.

So you see, within the game even if you change what you are wearing, change your occupation, change your face, change your gender, change your race or even your species, beneath it you are still you and you are still interacting with other people. And we, as a species, are quite adept at wearing masks, be them virtual or psychological. Today I could be a male soldier shooting at zombies and tomorrow when I enter the real world and interact with real people, I could be the the most compliant of people, molding myself to fit the situation I am in.


All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.
As You Like It Act 2, scene 7, 139–143

Life: The Game of Perception

If life is a game of perception, the world a stage, and all its people merely players, how boring life would be. While its true that life is all about perception, singular and shared, there is more to life than merely that alone. And if the world is nothing more than a stage for players to enact their scripts upon, how little does it truly speak about the people enacting them? Because life is not scripted. Life is not just what you or a group of people perceive alone.

And while we play a myriad of roles in this lifetime, beneath all of those faces...those masks, there is still you....the real you. And that person dwells beyond games, beyond perceptions, and beyond scripts and is much more than a mask or a player. Who is that person really, I wonder?

And yes, life is indeed like a game, but how much they reflect one another...well that's up to you and your perception, isn't it?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Empaths: How Is Your Self Esteem?

Let's talk about self esteem. One of the biggest issues Empaths suffer from is low self esteem. And even though this does not speak to everyone, it does speak to a vast majority.

This blog is about self discovery and potential healing for you. When you have actual answers to questions staring you in the face, something telling you that you have low self esteem, it's harder to deny it. And then you start thinking and you begin to look for resources to help change that. And that is the ultimate point of this discussion, to offer you help.

First I'd like to show you some symptoms of low self esteem. Please understand these are not all of the symptoms, and one does not have to have all of these to have low self esteem. Nor is this a medical and/or psychological assessment of low self esteem.

Some Symptoms Of Low Self Esteem

• Negative self-talk. You may constantly put yourself down and say things about yourself that you would never say about someone else.


• Frequently apologizing. You may take the blame for things that are not your fault.


• Focusing on your flaws. You see every little imperfection in yourself, and forget to notice what is good.


• Reject positive comments. If someone pays you a compliment, you respond with a negative statement such as, “No, I haven’t really lost that much weight.” Or “This old thing? I’ve had it
forever.”


• Avoiding risk. You cling to what is familiar and are afraid to try new things. You talk yourself out of doing things that might raise your self-respect, such as returning to school or
changing jobs.


• Avoiding eye contact. You have a hard time looking other people in the eye.


• Constantly seeking approval from others. You don’t feel satisfied until you know you have gotten approval or reassurance from other people. You are constantly asking others if they are mad at you or if they love you.


• Pessimism. You expect bad things to happen to you. You don’t notice the good things that happen to you on a daily basis.



Now I'd like to offer you some quizzes on self esteem. The first one is a link to a really great self esteem quiz. The second one has been copied and pasted here for you to view at your leisure.
Self Esteem Quiz

Self Esteem Quiz
By Thelma Mariano

1. I allow myself to make mistakes, realizing that we all learn from failure.

a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


2. My value as a person depends greatly on what others think of me.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


3. Whether I’m celebrating a success or getting through a rough period, I “reward” myself in self-defeating ways, e.g. overeating, drinking too much, or going on a spending spree when I am already in debt.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


4. I have trouble asking others for favours and tend to apologize a lot.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


5. I’d rather keep an unsatisfactory item than return it to the store. In a restaurant I’ll eat a meal, even if it isn’t what I ordered, rather
than return it to the waiter.

a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


6. I berate myself for saying or doing the wrong thing, calling myself “stupid.”
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


7. I would do something against my better judgment rather than risk another person’s disapproval.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


8. When I look at myself in the mirror, I see only my flaws.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d)very often


9. I think of how my life would improve if only I were smarter or better looking.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often

10. I graciously accept compliments and praise instead of tossing them aside.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


11. I do things which nurture, strengthen and relax my body.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


12. I am able to accept my vulnerable feelings like sadness, fear or anxiety.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


13. When I need comfort, I am able to turn to friends or family and let them know how I feel.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


14. I am comfortable expressing my angry feelings.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


15. I am able to assert my needs and wants with family members, colleagues or my partner.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d)very often


16. I recognize and value my need for solitude or “quiet time.”
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


17. I actively pursue and maintain friendships with people I truly like.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often


18. I balance my life with pleasure and fun, recognizing that I work harder when I am well rested.
a) never or hardly at all b) sometimes c) frequently d) very often

SCORING
Now add up all your points as shown below.

question 1: a-1, b-2, c-3, d-4
questions 2 through 9: a-4, b-3, c-2, d-1
questions 10 through 18: a-1, b-2, c-3, d-4


RESULTS



1-18 POOR
You rely heavily on other people’s opinions and find it
hard to assert yourself in your professional or personal
life. You are so anxious to please others that you
often ignore your own needs and wants. You are also
prone to rewarding yourself in self-destructive ways
(e.g. overeating). It is important for you to do things that
will nurture you – such as reading a book, swimming, walking
in nature or just listening to music.



19-36 FAIR
Although you make sure that you honour your commitments to
others, you are often self-critical and overly
demanding of yourself. You are quick to blame yourself
when things go wrong. Learn to be more tolerant of
your own mistakes and pay less attention to what others
may think. You do manage to find time for what’s important
in your life, which gives you a feeling of satisfaction.



37-54 GOOD
You know who you are and what you need to be happy and
usually are willing to take the time to do something
that will fulfill you. You are always trying to
improve yourself and surround yourself with supportive
friends or family. You see your strengths but may
need to learn to work with your weaknesses. For example, you may
have a short attention span and work best in spurts. By
recognizing this and giving yourself frequent breaks,
you will be more productive.



55-72 EXCELLENT
Congratulations! You have a deeply developed sense of self
and are self-nurturing. You respect your own feelings
as well as those of others and have no qualms about
turning to friends or family when you are in need of
comfort. You are patient with yourself. If you feel a
resistance to doing something, you get to the root of your
feelings instead of forcing yourself to go ahead. You lead a
healthy, well-balanced life.



Now that we've seen some symptoms of low self esteem and have been exposed to some quizzes about the level of our self esteem, lets look at some resources about how to improve it.

Resources For Healthy Self Esteem Building:

The Confidence Manual
How To Build Self Confidence: 6 Essential & Timeless Tips
Building Self Confidence
Building Self Esteem & Confidence
Life With Confidence: A Positive Way Of Thinking
25 Killer Actions To Boost Your Self Confidence
Building Self Esteem & Self Confidence
Building Self Esteem: A Self Help Guide
Building Self Confidence (another website)
How To Build Self Confidence

Thursday, May 27, 2010

10 Tips for Inner Confidence

10 Tips for Inner Confidence
By Christine Arylo

1. Stop Worrying About What Others Think

You can’t be responsible for how everyone around you feels about how you live your life. So stop worrying about how your family, partner, and friends will react to your choices, and start getting real about how you feel about your life. Ask yourself, “When I make decisions, do I think first of myself or do I worry about what others will think or feel?” Give yourself permission to put yourself first.


2. Do Things Because You Want To


Throw away the big O, Obligation. Give up the G word, Guilt. And make a commitment that everything you do, you do because you want to. Even for things you don't necessarily love doing, ask, “What is it about this action that does matter to me?” and act from that place. It’s all about your attitude. You can choose to be a martyr and a victim, or you can choose to be authentic.

3. Give Up the Image

We all construct images of who we think we are and who we want the world to see, and then attempt to live up to them. When the image you portray on the outside comes from who you truly are on the inside, you are being your authentic self. When the persona you show the world is based on fitting into expectations, ideals, and images set by society, your friends and family, or your work colleagues, you are living inauthentically. Choose to give up the false image and instead live from the inside out.


4. Know What Makes You Unique


Every person is born with unique gifts, talents, and inclinations that they are naturally good at. When you find them and use them, these gifts lead you to real happiness and success. Think about Tiger Woods. Born to golf. No matter how much you practiced, you’d never be as great as him; he has a gift. You have gifts too. Start noticing the compliments you often get from people. There is sure to be a gift there.


5. Be Clear About What Makes You Happy


Stop trying to fit into the expectations that outside forces—society, family, work, friends—have said you must achieve in order to be successful, happy, and accepted, and start asking yourself, “What really makes me happy?” Think about the times that you’ve been happiest. What were you doing? What did you have? Do the same for your most unhappy times. Compare the two to your life today and notice the gaps.


6. Know Your Emotional Triggers

We all have things that set us off or that evoke an overly strong reaction. It is time to stop letting them run the show! Pay attention to situations that make you spin, get your mad factor going, or send you into the pool of suffering. Be the boss of your emotions by having and taking responsibility for them, and don’t let them drive your life. To be your authentic self, you have to know what is under the surface motivating you.


7. Act on What You Know Is Right


Being your most real self isn’t always easy. It often requires going against what everyone else is doing or thinking. Being authentic means being true to what feels right for you, even if it doesn't fit the needs and sensibilities of other people -- parents, partners, and friends included. We always know what the best action is to take for ourselves, it’s just not always easy. Be committed to being you, even when it’s scary, and even when other people don’t like it.


8. Have an Opinion and Express It

Know what you believe and don’t be afraid to express it. People who live their authentic selves have convictions that come from inside their souls, minds, and hearts. They know their Truth and are willing to stand in it, even when what they have to say makes others uncomfortable. Know your Truth in all situations and share it with pride and conviction, knowing that your unique voice deserves to be heard just because you’re you.


9. Let Others See You


Be vulnerable. Share your most real self with the people around you—family, friends, and colleagues—and let them see all of you. The strong, the weak, the self-assured, the self-doubter, the funny, and the serious. Have and show your emotions fully—from sadness and happiness to anger and joy. When you keep the full range of your true self hidden, no one can know who you really are. While it may feel scary to be vulnerable, you’ll find that the more you show the real you, the more others will be willing to share their authentic selves too.


10. Never Apologize for Being You


Unfortunately, the world is full of people, including our inner critic, who want to keep us small, to play along, and to be good girls and boys. When we listen to them by apologizing for who we are, or discounting our contributions, thoughts, and feelings, we squash our authentic selves. Know that you deserve to be all of you, all the time. Be brilliant. Be you. And never apologize for it.