3 Keys to Thriving as an Empath

As an empath you need boundaries, boundaries and more boundaries to thrive. Yet boundaries are probably the thing you are least inclined to develop because you just want to connect, you love being in the flow, you don’t want to upset anyone and you don’t want to exclude anyone who feels lonely, sad or abandoned. So when you think about thriving as an empath you probably think about how to connect more, how to be in the flow more and how to be all-inclusive.

Yet, if you’re overwhelmed much of the time you really NEED boundaries.

Just note, boundaries are not brick walls. Sometimes people think they’re great at setting boundaries because they’ll take it, take it, take it and then boot someone out. There, a boundary!

But actually, that’s not a boundary at all, it’s desperation! It’s like trying to hang from a cliff: holding on, holding on, holding on, aaaaah can’t keep holding on any longer byyyyyyyyeeeeeeeeeeee.

How about saying – instead – after 3 seconds. Gosh, this is exhausting. I’m getting back on top of the cliff and doing something else. Racketball perhaps.

Now, that’s a boundary!

Let’s get to it, here are the three kinds of boundaries, the three keys as you will, that you need to thrive an empath.



1. Physical Boundaries  – for thriving as an empath


This includes:

  • physical space: like not letting someone hang over you so you’ve got your nose in their armpit.


  • sleep time: like not popping your eyes open with two matchsticks, in bed, at midnight, because someone might be disappointed if you don’t finish this now.


  • meals: like not throwing your half-eaten avocado wrap in the trash because you spent half your lunchbreak listening to Tina whine about how her eyeshadow is the wrong colour because she had to do her make-up in the car. (The whining made you lose your appetite, and the wrap sauce makes everything soggy when left too long, so no point keeping the wrap for later. But you didn’t want to say or do anything that might slightly upset Tina – because she is a doll most of the time, so now you’re guaranteed to have low blood-sugar at 4 pm)

Physical space, regular meals and plenty of sleep are the keys to sanity. Without regular sanity measures in place, all other plans will fail.





2. Emotional and Mental Boundaries – for thriving as an empath


This includes:

Not stuffing your brain with information you can’t process. You know you do it. We all do it from time to time and it’s SO easy to do. Especially when you’re researching something that is just SO interesting (or you just get stuck in a rabbit hole of clickety-clack)

Much of the internet is really like a free McDonalds for the mind. Endless drive-throughs leading to other, endless drive-throughs. But not necessarily great for your mental health. McFacts, McTidBits and McFeed are only really good for you in contained dosages.


drawing of person's brain fed with knowledge fastfood


Especially-especially when you feel upset and end up researching something… that is the brain’s sneaky way of tricking you into thinking that there is a rational, logical answer to what is actually an emotional, experiential problem (as in: you need to feel it more to get to the bottom of it, not think about it more)

So you pile on more and more information until you feel a little dizzy. You’re doing your utmost to figure something out after all, so you’re doing “good work” – no matter what your aching body says.

The more you get up in your head, the less you notice how your body is doing. Until you have a semi-panic attack and have no idea why.

When a smart person finally forces you to sit down and have a cup of tea, you realise you’ve read 40 bad news stories about violence, betrayal and murder in the last 72 hours (rabbithole + McFeed, check). You accidentally watched a documentary about how the planet is going to hell (you thought it would feature soothing bird sounds, but NO). You let 30+ friends, acquaintances and colleagues use you as a friendly ear with no needs or limits… (because nobody wanted to listen to them, so somebody should. Somebody => you. And you again. And again.)

At the end of all that, your accumulated vision of the world is some kind of hell in a basket nobody bothered/had time to decorate.

No wonder you feel terrible.

Meanwhile, you’ve been trying to resolve your emotional angst by gathering more information, which doesn’t really help. All it does is overload your brain and queue up your emotions for dealing with “later” (whenever that is, or rather isn’t).

As an empath, you may have somewhat given up on trying to deal with your emotions because if much of it might not be yours, what’s the point right?

True dat, but overstuffing your brain won’t help. You’d be better off doing something truly soothing and relaxing. For example, spending time in a quiet spot in nature. (Without a presenter’s voice telling you how everything you see is doomed.)





3. Psychic Boundaries – for thriving as an empath


When people think of psychic boundaries the first thing is usually: bubble! Shield! Affirmations! And for some people those work, but for many they don’t, because they don’t really get to the root of the problem.

I believe effective psychic boundaries:

  • give you better insight into how things work, instead of randomly trying to “block” people
  • are less and less work over time (instead of an endless parade of daily cleanses and visualisations)
  • empower you, instead of making you feel like you’re living in a scary world that’s out to get you





I love it when a plan comes together





Sometimes people are afraid of being assertive and then try to “secretly” fix everything with meditations. “I’ll just go to my room and invoke the violet flame!”

I met a girl in a workshop once who did exactly that. The workshop was on doing soothing meditations and energy readings. She brought a problem to the group that she wanted our input on. Specifically, what kind of meditation was suited to address this:

There was a boy at school who was hitting on her and wouldn’t leave her alone. She didn’t really like him.

So I asked if she’d told him that she wasn’t interested.

She hadn’t. In fact, she usually kept the conversations going – politely.

I encouraged her to just tell him to leave her alone, instead of trying swirly funkelsnurry “may he go away” meditations or anything like that.

The next week she reported back that she had told him she wasn’t interested. He left her alone from then on.

Problem solved.

Being an empath doesn’t mean that everything happens in subtle, psychic, energy dimensions. Thriving as an empath doesn’t mean you only focus on energy work! There are still plenty of things you can – and need to – resolve in very pragmatic ways.

“Drake, can you back off please so I don’t accidentally lick your armpit hair, thanks. Here, I’ll wheel myself out of the way in my desk chair so you can have the computer screen all to yourself. You’re welcome.”

“Tina, that sounds like a bummer. I’ll catch you later, I just need to dig into this delicious wrap first so I don’t faint from hunger at 4pm. Runny make-up is a bitch, but so am I when I’m hangry.”


clarity call after post transp

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