Understanding Empathy

by Jenna Avery – 

As a sensitive soul, you are likely to have a high degree of empathy. Empathy is the ability to feel another person’s emotions as if they are your own. In many ways, being empathic is a gift, because it allows you to fully experience, understand, and support others. In other ways, it can feel intrusive, overwhelming, and frustrating to have your personal space “invaded” by other people’s emotions and energies, and sometimes, even their physical symptoms.

Recognizing Empathy

Even if you’re highly sensitive, you may not fully recognize the extent of your empathy yet. To start, try paying attention to how others affect you while staying open to the idea that not all the emotions you’re feeling may be your own. I, personally, have been able to validate my empathic nature first-hand. Although I’d always called myself empathic, it wasn’t until recently that I truly began to understand what that entailed.

I was with a friend who to all outward appearances was in good spirits. But suddenly and abruptly, I found myself lost in a quagmire of negative thinking about my life, my work, and my relationships. I thought: “Wait a minute. Just aminute ago I was feeling fine and uplifted. As soon as my friend sat down, I went into this downward spiral.” And before giving it much more thought, I said to him:“Hey, are you okay? As soon as you sat down I started feeling really depressed.”

Being the gracious, open, sensitive soul that he is, he responded with the truth. He and his girlfriend had just ended their relationship only moments before. Although I felt so sorry for him, I was also elated. Here was real and tangible evidence validating my experience! I quickly began to reframe my past experiences of sudden, inexplicable depression that came on from as if from nowhere. It was a huge relief to shift my thinking about it.

Since then, I have put a great deal of effort into understanding and working with my empathic nature. What I’ve found is that we experience emotions that we have an internal resonance with. In other words, we’ve felt the emotions before, so we recognize and feel them within ourselves. Along with other factors like getting overstimulated and having low self-esteem, I think our empathy is part of why many sensitive souls are susceptible to feeling depressed.

Latest Science

Interestingly, in a Science Now program that aired on the PBS series Nova, the recent identification of “mirror neurons” was presented. These neurons fire when we move or emote, or see someone else moving or emoting. They can’t tell the difference between us taking action and someone else taking action, which means that we have the experience of doing it ourselves even if we’re just watching. (I guess this is what makes virtual reality a real possibility!) 

Have you ever watched people dancing, skating, playing sports or being emotional and felt as if you were moving or crying yourself? These neurons mean we may be capable of feeling motion and emotions even if we haven’t had a first-hand experience of them ourselves. Further, Nova’s research indicates that we are more likely to resonate with those we’ve already experienced. I can’t help wondering if sensitive souls have more greatly developed or expanded mirror neuron systems.

Psychic Development

Some schools of thought hold that empathy is a form of psychic ability, but my training has led me to believe that empathy is actually a form of having weak boundaries. Clairsentience is the fully developed and highly functioning form of empathy and is a psychic ability. Clairsentience, when it’s working properly, allows us to experience the emotions, energies, and physical sensations of others, without being personally affected by them ourselves. This state is an advanced skill – the ultimate form of empathy. The first step toward harnessing it is learning to balance and manage our empathy.

How Do We Get There?

I teach a number of skills in Phase II of my Embrace Your Essential Self program that focus on developing stronger boundaries, as well as other essential skills for sensitive souls. 

Here’s a look at some of what I teach to get you started:
  • Try flower essences. The yarrows flower essences sold by Flower Essence Services help you be less susceptible to the emotions of others and to differentiate your emotions from others. Different yarrows are available for different states, so be sure to explore. Walnut sold by Bach Flower is great for “protection from outside influences.” I’ve created a custom blend of yarrow, walnut, and purple monkeyflower (for psychic or spiritual discomfort) for myself.
  • Use the elements as support. You may want to try using water in your home and workspace to help protect yourself. Water is the element of emotion, and strategically placed bowls of water throughout your space can become repositories for emotional energy. I created a simple tabletop fountain to keep the energy and emotion moving through my space instead of stagnating in it.
  • Practice the art of self-defense. Karate, capoeira, kendo, boxing, and tai-chi are a few of the many forms of self-defense training that will help strengthen your energy field and personal power, which are key aspects of strong boundaries. My personal experience with this is that it is very empowering.
  • Love yourself. Seems simple to say that, doesn’t it? But self-care and self-respect – along with the ability to protect yourself and the ability to say, “No thanks!” – come from a place of deep self-love. Aren’t you worth it? When you get down to it, aren’t you the most important person in your life? And you deserve to be loved by the most important person in your life!
So next time you experience a sudden emotional shift that seems to come out of the blue, in addition to checking with yourself about what’s going on, take a look and see what might be happening around you. You may be experiencing something that isn’t yours!

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Clairvoyant, Clairaudient and Empathic Troubleshooting

by Krishanti Wahla –

3 Common Psychic Development Problems and Solutions

We are all psychic and we are all intuitive. Everyone has the ability to access some degree of clairvoyance in order to gain a deeper level of understanding and meaning – it just takes a little time, effort, focus and patience with the whole process.
Clairvoyance means clear seeing and involves letting your imagination show you pictures as a way of explaining things. Clairaudience means clear hearing and involves hearing messages as guidance. Empathy or clairsentience, means clear feeling, in the form of sensations that tell you about certain people or situations.
Many who are just beginning to tap into their psychic abilities have a hard time interpreting the information that comes through, and this is where a lot of patience is required.
Psychic info can be tough to decipher, because the very notion of interpretation leads you down the path of analysis, which forces you to use the logical side of your brain to make sense of the information that the imaginative side of your brain is intuiting.
That logical side of the brain loves to label psychic information as ridiculous, un-trustworthy, and weird. But being psychic about something really means letting go of control and trusting that what comes through makes sense on some level, even if it’s not immediately apparent.
Here are 3 common problem areas when it comes to understanding the messages you’re receiving and how to work with/around them.

When tuning in to gather information on an issue or problem, clairvoyant images pop up that seem totally random and make no sense.

If the random images you see are troubling and bothersome, take action and either destroy them by blowing them up on your screen or send them off into outer space or another realm where they disappear.

If the images don’t bother you but just don’t make sense, record them in a notebook so that you can come back to them later. Often, images that seemingly make no sense end up making complete sense later on – we just need the present moment to catch up to them. From my experience, it’s the images that seem to make no sense at all that end up making the most sense of all.


Clairaudient messages (which typically come through as thoughts, not as external voices talking to you) aren’t reliable. One day you’ll be certain you’re hearing that you need to turn off the iron but when you go to check it, it’s already off. Another day, you’ll hear that your friend is going to cancel at the last minute and sure enough, she does.

When first working with clairaudience, it takes a lot of people time to sense the guided messages from the regular mental OCD-type messages. I believe the OCD-type messages are just your ego mind throwing up some resistance into the mix. Many people I’ve worked with have told me they always have a running conversation going on with themselves and have done so for as long as they can remember.

So, imagine how that self you’re always talking to feels when suddenly this running conversation isn’t good enough for you anymore and you’re only tuning into guided or higher-self messages? It takes time and effort to distinguish true guidance from self-talk but what you will notice is that the more enlightened clairaudient messages tend to be really calm, strong, quiet and clear. Non-enlightened messages from your ego mind tend to sound worried, long-winded or shallow.


You get a bad feeling or feel anxious or nervous about a person or situation for some reason but you don’t know why.


Take it from me; being empathic seems more of a curse than a gift, because it’s extremely hard to feel something in your physical body and then try and figure out if it’s from you, the person next to you or the client you’re going to be seeing in an hour. Sometimes you have to just wait for the person or situation to reveal itself to you and when it does, the feeling you had dissipates. If you don’t want to wait, however, you can first just put your hand over your solar plexus chakra and ask, “Why am I feeling like this?” and wait to see what type of guidance you receive either through instant knowing, clairvoyance, or clairaudience.

You can also just sit for a moment and think about the major areas of or people in your life and do a clairvoyant test to see which one of these it is. For instance, create a symbol for your work and then ask, “Am I feeling bad because there’s something going on at work?” and see what you get. Or, think about the people in your life and notice if you feel worse when focusing on someone in particular. Then, use your clairvoyant skills to see what/why you’re sensing this.

If you are working on developing your psychic skills and are looking for a community to practice with, I recommend checking out my teacher Debra Katz’s online group, Seventh Sight, which is comprised of a community of like-minded people working to expand and develop their intuitive skills. Also, remember – the key to getting the most out of your psychic abilities is to quiet your mind. This meditation I recorded will help – memorize it, and run through it every time you sit down to work on a problem you’d like your intuition to tackle, and you’ll notice a difference.
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Are You a Highly Sensitive Person?

by Christiane Becht –

Being Highly Sensitive can have its ups and downs. Author Christiane Becht explains and sets a quiz to help you discover if you are a highly sensitive person.

Many people suffer from being easily drained and depleted, feeling overwhelmed, being on an emotional roller coaster or running on low energy. They know that if this goes on for too long they risk burning out or becoming ill. What they don’t know is that these ‘symptoms’ are very common amongst highly sensitive people.

The majority of these people, though, haven’t considered themselves as being highly sensitive. The label ‘highly sensitive’ often has a bad reputation, being perceived as a weakness while the many gifts and talents of sensitivity are often overlooked. Or, even more common, they are taken for granted!

The type of intelligence and intuition that comes with high sensitivity is, by those who have it, often perceived as something ‘normal’, and highly sensitivity people assume thateverybody feels or thinks in the same way. And even those people who do recognize themselves as highly sensitive, don’t always know what to do with it. And there is a lot that can be done – and a lot that can be discovered!

My Story

I have only detected my level of sensitivity over recent years. I would frequently find myself feeling so exhausted or overwhelmed after so-called normal life situations that I would wonder how I would survive the next one.

I dreaded the next business meeting. They felt so harsh to me and I wondered why other people didn’t seem to feel as ‘bruised’ as I did. I started hoping I wouldn’t run into a particular, chronically negative, neighbor who would constantly complain to me because I would feel so drained after getting dumped on by her.

I started to avoid dinner parties where people would tease, gossip, complain or exchange shallow conversation because I would end up going home not feeling recharged, but depleted. It made me feel so lonely and I would ask myself “Why can I not just enjoy myself? Why am I such a weirdo??” 

When I started to pay more attention to how I felt during and after each meeting and encounter I started to become aware of my sensitivity and over time, I learned some quick and simple tools that made my life so much easier (and more effective!). 

Through this process, I discovered that there are gifts to being highly sensitive that can become such a joy and can truly enrich your life.

If my story rings a bell and has got you thinking about your own experience, why not take this short, 11-question quiz that will help you evaluate whether or not you, too, are a highly sensitive person.

Am I Highly Sensitive? The Quiz

Do the following things happen to you? (Answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’)

  1. You feel drained after a conversation, even a casual one.
  2. You walk around feeling ‘unprotected’ and wonder how you can protect yourself better from the world.
  3. You walk around ‘very guarded’ as you deliberately try to protect yourself and not show too much of yourself.
  4. You find your job, your environment, your daily life ‘gets to you’ so much that you don’t know how to recover from it at the end of the day.
  5. You feel overwhelmed with information, emotions and energies coming at you from people, conversations, emails, news or movies on TV, maybe even background noise or electrical machines.
  6. You sometimes ‘hit a brick wall’, realizing you have let other people take way too much of your space and energy.
  7. You often have a feeling of what is going on in others – even when they try to hide it. You ‘feel’ everyone around you and sometimes feel overwhelmed by it.
  8. You sense when someone is pretending or lying.
  9. You find things painful that other people find normal, for example, while they talk aggressively or tease laughingly, you feel irritated or hurt.
  10. You feel stuck when people around you are being insensitive, harsh or energy-draining, and don’t know how to get away from the situation.
  11. You would love your relationships, work place, and the entire world to be more harmonious, joyful, peaceful and cooperative and you cannot easily be content with ‘this is just how things are’.

If you said Yes to seven or more questions you are most likely a highly sensitive person.

If you answered five with a Yes then you are probably a highly sensitive person but are maybe not as alert to it and the effect it is having on you. You could try taking these questions into your daily life and see whether you detect more of these in everyday situations.

Highly sensitive people might feel a bit lost in this world, and maybe even really desperate at times, thinking “I can’t cope with my life, it feels overwhelming. But what are my options? I can’t just stop going anywhere – and I don’t want to – but how can I survive in this world?”

So if you know that you are highly sensitive – or suspect that you may be – it is really important to learn about your sensitivity and what you can do with it. There are so many tips & tricks to discover that will help you live your life more easily and effectively. And once you learn to ‘survive’ better in your environment, you can then discover how your sensitivity can help you thrive in the world, be a lot more successful and also live your life more joyfully.

If you know (or suspect) you are highly sensitive, we have a lot more information and tips coming for you in future articles! If you want to learn more but don’t want to wait  you can buy our book, Your Energy in Action! ‘Energy Balancing’ for Daily Living, which talks a lot about how highly sensitive people can work with energy to recover quicker from irritating or energy-draining situations and encounters. 

Finally, we love to hear your experiences and thoughts so please do use the comments box to share your stories, thoughts, tips and questions about being highly sensitive. If you know (or suspect) you are highly sensitive, we have a lot more information and tips coming for you in future articles!

More articles from Christiane:

  • How to Survive as a Highly Sensitive Person in Today’s World
  • How to Be a Better Communicator in Personal Relationships
  • Finding yourself when you no longer know who you are
  • About Author:CHRISTIANE BECHT is a writer, international seminar leader, coach and teacher for Essence Training and the Energy Balancing Institute. A native of Germany, she was a first league field hockey player and comes from a background in corporate marketing for Fortune 500 companies like Kraft and Proctor & Gamble.

    When she was a CEO of her own marketing research company, Christiane first started to notice how the energy of rooms affected people. This observation drove her to embark on the study of Feng Shui, energy healing practices involving chakras and auras, spirituality, mediumship and psychology.

    In 2005, she became acquainted with Essence Training and Energy Balancing. Passionate about these unique methods, Christiane went on to develop Energy Balancing workshops and courses. After seeing the rapid, positive impact this work had on her clients, she and three of her colleagues went on to co-author the book Your Energy in Action! Energy Balancing for Daily Living.

    In this work, Christiane brings her extensive practical experience in applying Energy Balancing to “real life” situations, along with her knowledge of how people quickly learn this simple and highly effective method, as a “fast track” catalyst to higher levels of living and personal transformation. 

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    10 Coping Tips for Emotional Empaths

    by Krishanti Wahla – 

    When I first started becoming aware of the world of energy and I heard about “emotional empaths,” I thought they were a rare breed of super-psychic, sensitive people who were different from everyone else. It turns out, that’s not necessarily the case. 
    Empaths, you see are highly affected by the energies around them.  

    Often referred to as “sponges” and they get thrown off by other people’s moods and emotions, sensing their joy and excitement (which can be ok to feel) but also their anger, depression, sorrow and pain (which is awful to feel – especially because a lot of empaths have a hard time discerning whether these feelings belong to themselves, or someone else). 

    Nowadays, I’m almost starting to think it’s more strange NOT to be an empath than to be one because most of the people I meet for readings and healings are emotional empaths to some degree or another. 
    If you find your emotions swinging all over the place for no apparent reason or start to feel overwhelmed, weirded out or bombarded by energies in different places or spaces, you might (like a lot people) be empathic. 
    The following techniques can help you to get grounded, centered and back to your own vibration.

    1. If a place feels off to you, leave it. Don’t hang around for any “logical” reason – just get out.  

    There’s a shop near my home that has amazing clothes but every time I go in there I get a headache and leave feeling crappy. I’m not going there again anytime soon – unless I’m really ready to risk a potentially amazing fashion find for feeling bad for an afternoon.  

    2. Do certain people make you feel “off?” If so, create distance between your body and theirs. 

    Don’t keep interacting with someone who makes you feel uncomfortable in any way. Get the heck away from them! If any of these people happen to be your boss or co-workers, it’s time to get a new job. 

    3. If you’re stuck sitting somewhere and you can’t stand it anymore, get up and start walking around. 

    Leave the building and walk around the block if you can – just start moving. 

    4. When you’re feeling down or not yourself, listen to music. 

    Trust your intuition to tell you what you need – soothing, classical music, upbeat, fun music, or mellow, chill-out tunes. The notes will shift your vibration and bring you back to center.  

    5. Feeling totally burned out? Retreat in solitude for a while. 

    Take a bath, hide out in your bedroom and watch movies or read books or magazines, or go by yourself to your favorite place in nature. If you can, get out of town for a weekend. The distance will recharge your batteries. 

    6. Create an Energetic No-Fly Zone around your aura. 

    Envision your aura as it surrounds your body. Imagine it stretching to 10 feet (or more) in every direction, up above your head, down below your feet, and all around your body. Then see a strong, unbreakable, bullet-proof shield around the edges that keeps all foreign energy out. 

    If you’re feeling super bombarded and threatened, make the shield into iron and put sharp thorns or spikes in it. The more you reinforce this imagery, the more you’ll find that people respect your space, and your vibration will in turn become less sponge-like and absorbent.   

    7. Did you just get slimed by someone? This shamanic/witchy routine may help.

    This technique should be reserved for when you really super need help with clearing. It’s called an “egg cleanse.” Take a raw white egg, hold it between your hands, and pray, pray, pray that it will absorb any negative vibes from your body. 

    Run it all over your head, down your arms, and circle it around each of your chakras, envisioning at all times that it’s absorbing any and all negative energy from your body. When you’re done, throw it into the toilet so it cracks, and then flush the egg – and the bad vibes – away forever. 

    8. Get creative with crystals, oils, and amulets.

    There’s a reason these tools have been in existence for ages. Black tourmaline is great for empaths. Hold it in your hand or over your solar plexus chakra and imagine it protecting you from unwanted stuff. 

    Lemon essential oil cleanses other people’s vibes from your body, and rosemary, lavender, and cedar help strengthen your personal vibration. Any amulet in the form of a ring, necklace, or bracelet will remind you of your own strength and help you from soaking up, and being affected by, other people’s stuff.  

    9. Go into child’s pose. 

    This yoga position always helps you regain your own energy. Take a few deep, cleansing breaths and ask your guides to help you release any energy that’s not yours so that you can stay centered, focused, and grounded.  

    10. Ask yourself what you need right now and then do it – immediately! 

    It could be as simple as petting your cat, going for a run, downing a glass of water, eating some chocolate or watching something that will make you laugh out loud. Try this experiment in tuning in to your higher self, and you will definitely receive guidance that is good for you at any given moment.

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    The Difference Between Judgment & Discernment

    by Lissa Rankin – 

    He cheated on his wife with a much younger employee.
    She abandoned her newborn baby.
    He drinks until he beats his children.
    She manipulates her feminine wiles to get what she wants from men.
    He took their hard-earned money and then squandered it for selfish motives.
    She killed him.
    He raped her.
    She sells her body for money.
    He heads up a sex trafficking ring.
    She molests children.
    He sells drugs to teenagers.

    You might judge all of these people, labeling them as “immoral” or “wrong.” But as I described in my blog about being “spiritual but not religious,” I think spirituality is largely about choosing to withhold judgment, trusting that everyone’s soul is on its own journey, learning what it’s here to learn, and everyone is entitled to their own journey. 
    I’m in no way condoning such behavior, but what if, instead of your judgment, you could perceive these individuals as suffering beings and offer them your love and compassion instead? What if Reverend John Watson was right when he said, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle?” What if we all grew our empathy muscles instead of judging? 

    To Judge or Not to Judge

    As a child, I was raised to judge people who do “bad” things. The Methodist church told me these people would go to hell. Most of my family members taught me that only “good” people go to heaven and that I’d better be good myself if I want to go to heaven too.
    But what if people who make choices like this were themselves raped, abused, or abandoned when they were young? What if they know not what they do?
    Loving and accepting those who violate others is not about condoning the behavior or even tolerating it in your own life. It also doesn’t mean that there aren’t consequences to this kind of behavior. Having compassion for those who engage in such behaviors doesn’t mean you must stay married to these people or even allow them into your social circle. It’s not only your right to set boundaries in the face of these kinds of behaviors; it’s imperative. But boundaries can exist in the absence of judgment. 
    You can set limits that protect you and your loved ones without making someone wrong. Remember, judgment only burdens the judger. The minute you judge others, you lower your own vibration and step out of the vibration of love, which is the frequency of miracles. Judgment itself is the ultimate violation of all spiritual principles. Love and judgment simply cannot coexist. But love and discernment can.

    Judge Your Neighbor

    Byron Katie teaches what she calls “The Work” as a way to enter into spiritual inquiry around your judgments of others. As you can learn by filling out her “Judge Your Neighbor” worksheets (download one here), most of our judgments of others are actually judgments of disavowed shadow parts of ourselves. 
    If you’re pointing a finger at someone else, it’s probably because it triggers something you don’t like about yourself. You’re probably not a serial killer or rapist, but perhaps you’re always killing your creativity or violating your integrity or raping your truth. Once you open yourself to self-compassion and forgiveness, compassion for the neighbor you judge follows.
    I’ll be interviewing Byron Katie about this process as part of the bonus material for my upcoming National Public Television special The Fear Cure, so watch for it in February 2015 or read her books if you’re interested in learning more.
    be love

    Judgment Versus Discernment

    So what’s the difference between judgment and discernment? Judgment says “You are bad so I don’t love you.” Discernment says “I love you and choose to set boundaries to limit my exposure to you.” Judgment closes the heart.
    Discernment allows it to stay wide open but protected with clear boundaries. Discernment is the ultimate form of self care. 

    It’s a way of promising yourself to only allow into your inner circle those who vibrate at the same frequency as you. It’s a promise to yourself to only stay close to those who respect your boundaries, treat you with kindness, choose to behave guided by integrity and know how to love you with their own open heart. 
    This doesn’t mean you can’t hang out with people who choose to behave in ways you might not like. You can absolutely love and have compassion for people who might make choices you don’t agree with. But you’ll likely wind up in more of a mentoring role with these individuals—which is perfectly fine—but if you’re choosing to mentor someone, check your motivations. (Read the blog post Martha Beck inspired me to write; “Are You A Skanky Ho,” as a way to help you assess your motivation to be helpful.)
    It’s perfectly appropriate to serve others as long as you’re clean in your motivation and it’s coming from a place of worthiness and self love. But you may find this hard to do as you first begin your spiritual journey. These individuals probably won’t serve you as members of your core inner circle tribe when you’re in the vulnerable beginning phases of walking your unique spiritual path. 
    You may find it healthier and kinder to yourself to keep a little distance at first, at least until you’ve developed enough in your own spiritual growth to be able to be in the presence of lower vibration individuals without having it lower your own vibration.

    It’s a Phase of Development

    Don’t worry. You won’t need to do this forever. As you grow in your capacity to BE LOVE, you’ll find that you may be able to be close to others who are not where you are in your spiritual growth, even those you behave in ways that may be out of alignment with your own sense of integrity, without being negatively affected by their presence. Once you’re able to maintain clear energetic boundaries around those who operate at a lower vibration, your ability to hold your own vibration steady in the presence of others increases.
    This doesn’t mean you’re required to let close those who choose to engage in harmful behaviors. It’s even okay to boundary against or discern into your outer circle those individuals who aren’t interested in moving beyond egoic consciousness. You might choose to grant yourself permission to only stay close to others who, like you, are committed to the spiritual path. It’s okay if you choose to do this! As Martha Beck once said to me, “Choose relationships that cultivate the stillness in you.” If you’re surrounded by drama, opt out.
    There’s no need to keep people close in your life just because you feel bad for distancing yourself. If you’re motivated to stay in a relationship because you feel pity for someone, that should be a red flag to you that your motivation isn’t clean. It’s okay to grant yourself the yummy factor of only choosing to be close with those who are also committed to staying in alignment with their own integrity as they try to let their souls, not their egos, take the lead.

    Discernment Increases Compassion

    In Brene Brown’s research, she found that the most compassionate people were those with the highest boundaries. Because they protect their own boundaries, they can walk around with an unguarded heart while still feeling safe. If you feel like closing your heart is the only way to keep others out, you’ll wind up practicing less compassion.
    Try seeing what it feels like to withhold judgment, open your heart and practice discernment. 

    You just might find yourself experiencing an unbearable lightness of being. If nothing else, you’ll be free of the burden of judgment and can open yourself to more connection and a sense of Oneness with those around you.

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    Tips for Highly Sensitive People

    15 Tips for Empaths and Highly Sensitive People:
    Lynn Zambrano – 

    Empathic ability allows you to read and understand people’s energy. This ability may be genetic, passing from generation to generation. You may share this ability with a relative, so look at your family tree; does anyone else seem to fit the description? Empaths have the ability to scan another’s energy for thoughts, feelings and possibly for past, present, and future life occurrences.

    Most empaths are unaware of how this really works, and have accepted that they are sensitive to other people’s energy. The ability to correctly perceive and to some extent mirror the energy of another is a challenge. This gift allows us to steer ourselves through life with added perception. You need to be selective and have coping skills in place, if not you will easily be overwhelmed.

    These are some excellent methods for coping:
    1. Schedule time with you:
    Spending time alone creates the space needed to release emotion, energy and stress.
    2. Positive Affirmations:
    Short messages that train thought patterns. An example: “Let me receive what is in my best and highest good at this time”
    3. Shielding:
    Placing a protective shield of white light that is around and encasing you in a bubble, remember to make a grounding cord so you don’t float away!
    4. Chakra Cleansing and Balancing:
    Regular cleaning of the chakras will keep your energy field free of negative or unwanted energy. Re-balance them by bringing in energy that will create alignment and balance.
    5. Centering:
    Align yourself with spirit and get out of Ego. Try to live in the moment and whatever emotion comes up express and release it.
    6. Stones:
    Some people find that crystals and gemstones aid in clearing negative energy and maintaining balance. Choose yours by trying several different stones,and by paying attention to how each feels.
    7. Aroma therapy:
    Essential oils can enhance well being. Choose what elevates or calms your mood.
    8. Forgiveness:
    Forgiving others and forgiving self is one of the most powerful tools you have. It will clear your energy and raise your vibrational rate.
    9. Grounding:
    We have a grounding cord in the root chakra that connects us to the earth. Being aware of this and using this cord to both send negative energy into the earth where it is absorbed and drawing nourishing energy up from the center of the earth will increase your energetic flow.
    10. Meditation:
    Quiets the mind so you can center, be present and listen to the voice within.
    11. Soothing Sounds:
    Relax yourself using music or nature sounds.
    12. Animals and Nature:
    Being in Nature or spending time with our pets is a great way to relax, clear energy and connect.
    13. Smudging:
    The Native Americans have been doing this with great results for years. Burning sage while stating an intention is a great method for clearing energy.
    14. Yoga:
    Yoga is effective because it combines breathing, centering and grounding. A wonderful way to raise vibrational energy.
    15. Gratitude and intention journal:
    Ending the day by writing a list of things you are grateful for and then stating an intention to work towards keeps the energetic flow steady.
    About the Author: Lynn Zambrano R.N., has worked professionally as a nurse on a psychiatric crisis unit. While working as a nurse she studied energy healing and further developed her intuitive gifts. As an intuitive life guide she helps others achieve the success they want by breaking through perceived barriers, finding inner wisdom, clarity of mind and inner strength. Twitter and Facebook or email her at Lightminded1@yahoo.com. 

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    Embracing Compassion as Fundamental:
    by Dr. Jeanine Austin –

    “Because they are human, they suffer. Those who have a better story, a ‘healthier’ childhood, a more impressive résumé, better looks, connections or education, suffer. Those who are less fortunate than ‘me’ also suffer. Those who are able or good suffer as do those who are weak or mean.”
    –Laurence Boldt, The Tao of Abundance

    Recently on ‘The Love Hour with Marchae White’, Ms. White asked me what one of the key ingredients of my coaching work is. The first thing that popped into my head was compassion. I believe that compassion for self and for others is fundamental to our happiness and self-actualization. Further, I believe compassion is one of the keys to the much needed healing of our planet. For most of us, common sense or our intuition tell us that compassion is a much kinder and gentler way to roll than judgment and harshness.

    Often, it is easier for us to have compassion for ourselves than others because we know where we are coming from in life. 

    We understand our own point of view, values and belief system. We also know all of the nuances that went into that decision we made that didn’t turn out so well. We know how painful that situation really was and how hard we worked to get beyond it. When we look at others and their situations, we may forget that they also have been at the effect of many unseen circumstances in their lives. In fact, what appears to be just pure selfishness or even stupidity to us may be the result of a myriad of factors that someone is dealing with and trying their best to negotiate.

    One way to move beyond judgment and into compassion is to remember that suffering is universal. 

    We have all known suffering. If we assume that a sister is suffering and we start our relationship or even the conversation on a note of compassion, we have cut to the chase so to speak. We have already moved beyond many barriers to intimacy.

    There was a poignant Asian parable I once read about a woman who was devastated by the death of her child. In grief, she asked her spiritual teacher/coach how she might go beyond the burden of her suffering and grief. The coach suggested that she go from house to house and find a family that has not suffered deeply. She realized through her exercise that she is not alone in her suffering. She had not been singled out by God. Suffering is universal. She was still grieving at the end of her assignment, but she was comforted deeply in knowing that she was not alone. She also was giving a coping model through her experience; others survived, and if she chose, she would also.

    I often think of human beings as having three identities: public, private and secret. 

    I remember an example from the 80s movie The Big Chill. For those of you who didn’t see it, a handful of college friends reunite for the funeral of their dear college friend. Glen Close’s character, Sarah Cooper, appears to outsiders to be someone who is strong and steadfast at the time of their reunion (public face). With her most intimate group of friends she reveals some deeper and more private feelings about the death (private face). Later, we see her crying alone in the shower, obviously devastated by the loss of her friend. This also helps the audience to gain the insight that the relationship with her deceased male friend was probably profoundly intimate (secret face).

    It doesn’t take a doctor of life coaching to help us recognize that it can be a rough world out there. Even if we never see someone’s secret face, let’s remember that they have one. To not acknowledge this might originate from callousness, naiveté or some other form of denial. In the end, we hurt only hurt ourselves if we don’t embrace compassion. After all, when we extend compassion, we are one of the beneficiaries.

    (c) Jeanine Marie Austin, Ph.D., C.Ht.

    Doctor of Life Coaching, Certified Hypnotherapist

    Life Coaching and Hypnosis Worldwide

    (480) 491-0770

    Free Consultation Available

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