I am a giver, like most people in my industry we give, give and give. There are, unfortunately, takers who take, take and take. This is how the world works, it’s all duality. Yin and Yang. Night and day. Good and evil. One cannot exist without the other. Dr Christine Northrup calls these people energy vampires.
In a nutshell these are types of beings who sense the goodness in others and exploit it. As a result, you are drained of your energy and joy just by being in their company. The psychology behind their characteristics is fascinating and I highly recommend you read the book if you feel you might have one or several in your life.
Dr Christine Northrup gives a great explanation in her book, going into depth around recognising them and healing from them but here is a great explanation of how the dynamics work between empaths and energy vampires.
“Before we empaths realise what is happening, we find ourselves freely sharing our wisdom, time and resources with those who call us whenever is convenient for them. We give freely because that is our nature. We fan the flames of their potential, feeling like we’ve been useful and needed. However, over time we find that they are not there for us, they don’t follow our advice and nothing changes. All they want is a hit of our energy, a voice on the other end of the line or for us to do something for them.”
The term ‘energy vampire’ may sound very dramatic but it helps to understand the scale. At the low end are takers who are probably unaware they take and at the high end are the energy vampires part narcissists part sociopaths, draining the life force out of you in a deliberate and malicious way.
Low self esteem attracts energy vampires
Now the problem isn’t with the giving itself, the problem is to do with needing to over give because you think you’re not enough.
All of us have wounds and one of the deepest and most prevalent is lack of self worth. Not feeling worthy of success, love, happiness or whatever it may be. It’s a running theme through all of us and is so deeply rooted you likley won’t recognise it in yourself.
Self esteem is the world’s number one health problem and it’s my number one health problem too. It’s all linked to your immune system so if you aren’t feeling loveable, worthy or content with who you are you often suffer through your health.
So, if you’re a giver and you have a wound around self esteem and lack of self worth you are a magnet to those who recognise this and exploit it. Like flies to blood. They know they can take and you won’t put up any resistance.
Giving too much stems from a self esteem wound
If you tie your self worth to anything external you will suffer. I tied it to feeling ‘useful’ and ‘good’ and my way to express this is through over-giving. Therefore, I had a real fear around “what if people think about me negatively?” as I linked their opinions to my self worth. Hence always needing to give, give, give and not upset anyone as I went along.
My wounds have created a powerful desire to be accepted and an overwhelming belief that I shouldn’t hurt other people’s feelings.
I’m so accommodating, so apologetic, so flexible to their demands. I bend over backwards to please them, to be a ‘good friend’, to be a ‘good practitioner’, to be a ‘good employee’. I don’t like people to feel uncomfortable from my actions. I like to keep the peace to avoid negative repercussions. This means trying to please, comfort, change and help anyone who knocks on my door, at great personal cost.
For a long time, I’ve given too much of myself away because, fundamentally, who I am never felt good enough.
Empaths have a right to feel negative emotions
My way of living life is through soul. This means compassion, love and trust. If you’d like to read about the difference between living through soul and ego you can read my musing here. I am spiritual-minded; I live my life through certain values such as compassion and non-judgement. I am also an empath, all those who work in the field of healing are empaths, it’s in our nature to help, give and care.
However, being inclined in this way does not mean repressing emotions. Empaths have a right to feel.
Nowadays if you’re spiritually-minded you’re assumed to be beyond negative emotions like fear and anger. Oh no. I feel these but the difference is that I’m hyper aware of them and continually work on the root issue that’s feeding them.
We need to recognise these negative emotions and understand them, not bypass them or squash them down because we’re ‘too spiritual’ to feel and express negativity.
Emotions are our internal guidance system, showing as when we are not living in alignment, that something isn’t working. To ignore means driving these unexpressed emotions into the body causing stress and illness. This is the whole basis of Kinesiology.
Christine Northrup speaks deeply on righteous anger. We all have the right to feel angry. Empaths are not loving machines who have to love everyone, serve everyone and please everyone. I have a right to feel anger.
© 2021 Antonia Beamish