This list and many like it are available online, but I felt one should be here as well, since empathy is of such direct relevance to myself and many WwW readers! Does this list (or much of it) resonate with you? ..or maybe someone you love? If you’re attracted to this information enough to check into it, you are likely a fellow empath. I reposted this particular list from the kindred blog, Just Be. oxo, Whitehawk
At A Glance: 30 Traits of an Empath
1. Knowing: Empaths just know stuff, without being told. It’s a knowing that goes way beyond intuition or gut feelings, even though that is how many would describe the knowing. The more attuned they are the stronger this gift becomes.
2. Being in public places can be overwhelming: Places like shopping malls, supermarkets or stadiums, where there are lots of people around, can fill the Empath with turbulently vexed emotions that are coming from others.
3. Feeling others emotions and taking them on as your own: This is a huge one for Empaths. To some, they will feel emotions off those near by and with others they will feel emotions from those a vast distance away, or both. The more adept Empath will know if someone is having bad thoughts about them, even from a great distance.
4. Watching violence, cruelty or tragedy on the TV is unbearable: The more attuned an Empath becomes the worse it is and may make it so they eventually have to stop watching TV and reading newspapers altogether.
5. You know when someone is not being honest: If a friend or a loved one is telling you lies you know it (although many Empaths try not to focus on this because knowing a loved one is lying can be painful). Or if someone is saying one thing but feeling/thinking another, you know.
6. Picking up physical symptoms off another: An Empath will almost always develop the ailments off another (colds, eye infections, body aches and pains), especially those who they’re closest to, somewhat like sympathy pains.
7. Digestive disorders and lower back problems: The solar plexus chakra is based in the centre of the abdomen and it’s known as the seat of emotions. This is where Empaths feel the incoming emotion of another, which can weaken the area and eventually lead to anything from stomach ulcers to IBS (too many other conditions to list here). Lower back problems can develop from being ungrounded (amongst other things) and one, who has no knowledge of them being an Empath, will almost always be ungrounded.
8. Always looking out for the underdog: Anyone whose suffering, in emotional pain or being bullied draws an Empath’s attention and compassion.
9. Others will want to offload their problems on you, even strangers: An Empath can become a dumping ground for everyone else’s issues and problems, which, if they’re not careful can end up as their own.
10. Constant fatigue: Empaths often get drained of energy, either from energy vampires or just taking on too much from others, which even sleep will not cure. Many get diagnosed with ME.
11. Addictive personality: Alcohol, drugs, sex, are to name but a few addictions Empaths turn to, to block out the emotions of others. It can be a form of self protection in order to hide from someone or something (external emotions).
12. Drawn to healing, holistic therapies and all things metaphysical: Although many Empaths would love to heal others, they can end up turning away from healing (even though they have a natural ability for it), after they’ve studied and qualified, because they take on too much from the one they are trying to heal. Especially if they are unaware of their empathy. Anything of a supernatural nature is of interest to Empaths and they don’t surprise or get shocked easily. Even at the revelation of what many others would consider unthinkable, for example, Empaths would have known the world was round when others believed it was flat.
13. Creative: From singing, dancing, acting, drawing or writing an Empath will have a strong creative streak and a vivid imagination.
14. Love of nature and animals: Being outdoors in nature is a must for Empaths and pets are an essential part of their life.
15. Need for solitude: An Empath will go stir-crazy if they don’t get quiet time. This is even obvious in empathic children.
16. Gets bored or distracted easily if not stimulated: Work, school and home life has to be kept interesting for an Empath or they switch off from it and end up daydreaming or doodling.
17. Finds it impossible to do things they don’t enjoy: As above. Feels like they are living a lie by doing so. To force an Empath to do something they dislike through guilt or labelling them as idle will only serve in making them unhappy. It’s for this reason many Empaths get labelled as being lazy.
18. Strives for the truth: This becomes more prevalent when an Empath discovers his/her gifts and birthright. Anything untruthful feels plain wrong.
19. Always looking for the answers and knowledge: To have unanswered questions can be frustrating for an Empath and they will endeavour to find an explanation. If they have a knowing about something they will look for confirmation. The downside to this is an information overload.
20. Likes adventure, freedom and travel: Empaths are free spirits.
21. Abhors clutter: It makes an Empath feel weighed down and blocks the flow of energy.
22. Loves to daydream: An Empath can stare into space for hours, in a world of their own and blissfully happy.
23. Finds routine, rules or control, imprisoning: Anything that takes away their freedom is debilitating to an Empath even poisoning.
24. Prone to carry weight without necessarily overeating: The excess weight is a form of protection to stop the negative incoming energies having as much impact.
25. Excellent listener: An Empath won’t talk about themselves much unless it’s to someone they really trust. They love to learn and know about others and genuinely care.
26. Intolerance to narcissism: Although kind and often very tolerant of others, Empaths do not like to be around overly egotistical people, who put themselves first and refuse to consider another’s feelings or points of view other than their own.
27. The ability to feel the days of the week: An Empath will get the ‘Friday Feeling’ if they work Fridays or not. They pick up on how the collective are feeling. The first couple of days of a long, bank holiday weekend (Easter for example) can feel, to them, like the world is smiling, calm and relaxed. Sunday evenings, Mondays and Tuesdays, of a working week, have a very heavy feeling.
28. Will not choose to buy antiques, vintage or second-hand: Anything that’s been pre-owned carries the energy of the previous owner. An Empath will even prefer to have a brand new car or house (if they are in the financial situation to do so) with no residual energy.
29. Sense the energy of food: Many Empaths don’t like to eat meat or poultry because they can feel the vibrations of the animal (especially if the animal suffered), even if they like the taste.
30. Can appear moody, shy, aloof, disconnected: Depending on how an Empath is feeling will depend on what face they show to the world. They can be prone to mood swings and if they’ve taken on too much negative will appear quiet and unsociable, even miserable. An empath detests having to pretend to be happy when they’re sad, this only adds to their load (makes working in the service industry, when it’s service with a smile, very challenging) and can make them feel like scuttling under a stone.
If you can say yes to at least 10 of these traits (especially 1 to 10), you could very well be an Empath.
Empaths may carry many of the same traits but they/we are still individuals. We can override or block certain traits and some traits will come and go over the years (strengthen or weaken) as life circumstances change. Once one has become aware of one’s birthright of being an Empath (this will normally happen when any, or all, of the above traits start screaming at you for attention), it is then we can find remedies to ease symptoms and perhaps discover what our true role in life is.
If you are new to discovering you are an Empath check out Grounding Techniques for Empaths and Sensitives or Ayurveda for an Empath.