I often work with highly sensitive people and empaths who are extremely good at tuning in and adapting to their environment. Like a chameleon, they change themselves depending on where and with whom they are.
This means that they act and feel differently with different people and in different situations.
They connect so deeply with others that they almost become one with the other, and as a result lose connection with themselves.
Adapting to other people
Let’s say you walk into a room full of people. This is what might happen when you’re very sensitive:
1) You feel the atmosphere in the room, and maybe you notice who is getting along with whom (and who are not getting along).
2) When someone talks to you, you tune into this person. You may pick up on the energy they radiate, or how they feel, or even what they need. Or you start thinking about how you think they think you ‘should’ be. What you should say. How to respond.
3) You adapt your energy and way of being, doing and talking to this other person. You harmonize. You may start to feel the same emotions & energy as the other.
4) When another person comes around, you adapt your energy, your behavior and your words to this new person. And so on and so on.
Adapting is not always a bad thing
This ability to adapt is not always a bad thing, because different situations ask for different ways of being. For example, you may bring out different aspects of yourself at work than when you’re with your partner. That’s fine.
And harmonizing can be done without taking over the energy (and emotions) from others. Compare it with music: you can play your own note that is different than the note of your partner, but still in harmony. That’s what chords are in music and it applies to energy as well.
Your sense of self
But if you tune into other people so much that you lose your sense of self, then you become out of balance. Then questions may come up like:
- what do I want? (because you are so tuned in to what other people want or need, you may lose connection with what you yourself want or need)
- who am I?
- where’s my center? How do I stay balanced?
You are then like a leaf in the wind. Going along for the ride, wherever the wind (the circumstances and people in your life) may take you.
3 exercises that help
(with guided meditations)
If this feels like you, there are a few things that can help you to feel more stable, grounded and balanced:
Picture this leaf in the wind. Then picture the tree where it comes from. Imagine that you are a big, strong tree. If a wind or storm comes along, you may move a little bit, but you keep standing. You stay centered. In my free mini training The Power of Sensitivity you find a free guided grounding meditation to help you experience this.
2) A Clear Boundary
Become aware of the edge of your energy field: where you stop and the outside world begins. Learn to have a clear energetic boundary between you and the rest of the world. This allows you to observe what is going on rather than being absorbed by it.
3) Radiating Your Energy
Practice radiating your energy outward, instead of letting the outside energies (from other people) come in. This helps you feel strong and powerful, and it prevents you from taking in too much and then feeling overwhelmed by it.
All of these exercises can be found in my free mini training The Power of Sensitivity as guided meditations!
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