Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

A journey to healing from complex trauma.

Empath, Highly Sensitive Person, Burden Bearer – whatever it is called – I am one.


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An empath is a highly sensitive person who can literally feel other people’s emotions as their own. They feel everything and sometimes to the extreme. They are quite giving, spiritually attuned, and world-class listeners.

This might sound pretty cool, but I assure you that it can be a curse if you do not understand what is happening to you. When I found out I was an empath, it came at a time of emotional breakdown, which is not the optimal time to discover this! You can literally be walking around with a lifetime of accumulated karma, emotions, and energies of others. Until you learn about empaths and hone your skills, it can be an overwhelming experience to absorb everyone’s emotions around you.

Dr. Judith Orloff, emotional freedom expert, states that empaths can become angst-sucking sponges. She states that this can lead the empath sucking up negativity and lower frequency vibrations in an atmosphere and become exhausted. They are easy targets for emotional vampires, whose fear or anger can ravage empaths. It’s difficult for them to see the beauty around when they are full of emotional angst. They may have trouble in relationships due to being highly sensitive and needing time and space alone.

Empaths have unique variations in the central nervous system. The sensory organs have low thresholds resulting in high sensitivity to light, sound, and smell. I remember literally feeling my nervous system shaking inside. I never understood what was going on.

Are you an empath?
•Can you feel what other people are feeling?
•Do people tell you that you are “too sensitive” or “too emotional”?
•If a friend or partner is distraught, do you start feeling that as well?
•Do you get your feelings hurt easily?
•Do you avoid conflict no matter what?
•Do you get emotionally drained when around a group of people?
•Do you dislike foul smells or excessive noise? Constant chatter?
•Do you somehow just know what other people need to hear to feel better? Or what you can do to help them feel better?
•Do people find it easy to talk to you? You find yourself listening to the clerk’s problems and are cornered at family gatherings by those who “need an ear”?

Here are some empathy side effects (if you have not yet learned to control your skills)
•Feeling emotionally or physically overwhelmed in crowds
•Feeling like the weight of the world is on your shoulders
•Getting emotionally overwhelmed for no reason at all
•Trouble sleeping with someone else
•Tend to focus on others rather than themselves
•Have hearing symptoms like ringing, popping, and itching in the ear
•Feel emotionally uncomfortable during sex
•Migraines if sensory overload occurs

4 Kinds of Empaths:
1.Impaired Empath. You might get overwhelmed easily around others, loud noises make you stomach tighten and you get quite anxious, you feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders, and you struggle with fatigue, headaches, and depression.
2.Balanced Empath. You have taken some time to learn about being an empath. You are able to control the flow of emotional information around you so that it does not overwhelm you.
3.Professional Empath. You have honed your skill and can use your intuition for specific work like healing.
4.The rest. Everyone is born with the ability to be an empathy, but most people shut this down and use other cues to get emotional information. (like verbal and non-verbal indicators).

Empaths and nature

Empaths are passionate about nature and find it absolutely beautiful. They love how nature makes them feel, as this is a form of release for the empathy. Nature is a place they can recapture their senses and get a sense of peace in their lives. The more time spent in nature, the more balanced and happy they will feel. They will be able to recharge their energy levels quickly in nature.

Steps to finding balance

The first step in finding balance is to recognize that you are an empath. You are among 10% of the population, so you are not alone. Once you can accept your emotional type, you can begin to learn how to take care of your emotions instead of constantly drowning in them.

Here are some great strategies to keep yourself centered:

Schedule quiet time to emotionally decompress. Take some mini-breaks throughout your days. Get outside for a walk. Do some exercise. Practice deep breathing. Mini-breaks work wonders.

Practice meditation regularly. Meditate a few times per day. You don’t have to meditate for long, but a few minutes a few times a day can really help you get centered and release negative energy that builds up.

Honor your needs. Empaths have different needs than those with different emotional types. Learn what your needs are and honor them.

•Learn how to politely say no when you do not want to do something. People will ask you to do things all the time because they unconsciously and consciously know that you are over-giving.
•Leave gatherings when you begin to feel overloaded. It’s alright to politely state that it is time for you to leave early.
•Prepare yourself before entering crowds. Meditation works well.
•Create a private space at home. Let your family know that you need a private space to recharge your batteries regularly. Dr. Orloff discusses how some empaths in relationships have nontraditional living settings that are compatible with the empath’s comfort zone.
•Stay connected to your Higher Power
•Set clear boundaries with others

Being an empath is a gift to the world. Stop feeling badly about it or trying to be someone you are not. Embrace it. Learn how to balance and center yourself. You’re your skills. Embrace the innate healing ability within you and create harmony and balance in the world.

Author: Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

I am a survivor of complex and multiple trauma and abuse, who at the age of 40, began my healing journey. I am using my journey to recovery and healing, to help others, to help survivors feel less alone, validated, encouraged and to enable others to understand themselves more. Complex trauma, particularly from severe, prolonged childhood abuse, is profoundly life changing. Complex trauma produces complex adults. The journey to recovery is a painful, often lonely, emotional daily challenge and it is my aim to encourage others in their daily battle. ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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