Slowing Down: Advice For Empaths & Highly Sensitive People

If you’re an empath like me, you probably get overwhelmed easily. It is not uncommon to struggle with certain social situations such as large crowds or noisy environments. Sometimes performing normal tasks like ordering food or going to the grocery story can be difficult. If you’re an empath or a highly sensitive person, it probably feels like you pick up everyone’s emotions or energy. It is anxiety provoking, to say the least. 

I have been noticing my heightened sensitivity lately. I am not too sure if it is because I just transitioned to a “faster” pace of life than my laid-back lifestyle in the Green Mountain State. Or maybe it because I've been in a state of transition and utter chaos for the past few months. It feels like every time I set out to get something done, I find myself overwhelmed by the chaos of daily life. I notice people rushing to get places and worrying about making things happen at a blink of an eye. The constant need to work more and push the boundaries further. This way of life kind of makes my head spin in circles.

If you consider yourself an empath of a highly sensitive individual, how do you slow down? How do you block out the chaos as it buzzes around you?

Here are just a few techniques that have been helping me recently.

  1. Taking You Time: I’ve learned over the years that I operate at a certain speed. Sometimes I can function pretty well under chaotic or stressful situation, but I normally need to speed check myself and ask, “Is this actually working for me?” I think it is important to know how you process information and at what speed you can function. I say, it’s ok to slow down and move at your own pace. There are times when it is not possible, but if it is possible, slow down. 
  2. Smudging: Ah, thank God for sage and palo santo. When I am feeling a little overwhelmed by things, smudging myself and burning something sweet smelling just calms me right down. It helps to clear away any negative energy that you might have picked up from a person or from the day. For on the go, I always like to try and carry a bottle of essential oils mixed with water. I love lavender because of it's natural grounding and relaxing smell. Get a small spray bottle and fill it with water. I sometimes reuse small bottles that I have bought in the past, like a hand sanitizer spray bottle. After filling it with water, add about 20-30 drops of your favorite essential oil, shake, and spray!
  3. Act as a Hollow Reed: Empaths naturally pick up people’s energy or emotions. This can be pretty distressing at times because it is not something intentional, it just happens. I try to remind myself of what one of my teachers told me, “Act as a hollow reed. Allow the energy to pass through you, out the soles of your feet, and into the ground.” I try to remember that I am grounded and that I do not have to hold onto anything. Let it just pass through! You do not need to hold onto other people's energy.
  4. Knowing Your Limits and Take Space: It happens. We are out and about and an anxious energy overtakes our being and our body. Maybe you are out in a large crowded area like a mall. Or maybe you are out at the bar and the noise/discussions are just becoming too much. It’s ok to take space. Go to the bathroom. Remove yourself from the situation and recollect yourself. Sometimes getting fresh air is all we need. It makes no sense to just stay in the moment and feel crappy. Sometimes getting fresh air or walking away from a situation is all we need to get grounded. 
  5. Set Boundaries: Sometimes as empaths we probably feel pretty boundaryless. We soak up everyone else’s energy and forget that we are allowed to create boundaries. It’s ok to say “no” to things and know that you have control over your inner world. Think about what boundaries you can put into place to feel more secure in the world. It is important!

Hopefully some of these tips help in some way. Let me know if you consider yourself an empath and have any awesome tips to share!