Empaths and energy leaks are like oil and water; they don't mix. But what is an energy leak exactly and why are they an empath's worst enemy?
In today's post I'll illustrate some classic examples of energy leaks that empaths tend to unconsciously create in relationships and why it's important to rectify them.
Why energy leaks are especially detrimental to empaths
Energy is an empath's most vital resource. Because empaths feel everything, draining relationships are especially debilitating to your health, creativity and productivity
Permitting energy leaks means you're not walking the talk of self-love. You're acting as if you don't value yourself or your energy
Energy leaks weaken your aura and lower your frequency, keeping you from manifesting satisfying, nurturing, high-vibe relationships and leaving you more susceptible to psychic interference.
Ignoring energy leaks send a signal out to the universe telling it that you want more of the same.
Energy leaks perpetuate the rescuer/ martyr program, which many empaths came here to consciously override for the benefit of future generations
Let's move on to some classic examples of energy leaks.
Energy Leaks with Yourself
When you continue to do a job, activity or engage in a behaviour you know you shouldn't. You know that you hate it or that it's bad for you. You know that it makes you feel contemptuous towards yourself when you do it. You know that you are not being true to yourself when you engage in that activity or behaviour. That's a very basic energy leak that needs to be culled.
Lying is another form of energy leak because each time you say or do something that isn't in alignment with your core values, you are adding energy to your false persona for the purpose of pleasing others. That's cowardly and it's not spiritual.
Being spiritual takes bravery to truly be who you are and the discipline to still be kind to others.
Energy Leaks in Friendship
Imagine this scenario:
An old friend you care about deeply has got herself into a pickle…yet again. She texts you to say she’s popping over for a tea and a quick chat, despite your protests that you’ve got laundry to do and 50 Etsy orders to complete. For the second time this week your friend unpacks her many problems unto you without taking a single breath and letting her tea go cold.
As always, you listen attentively, patiently. When she’s exhausted herself, she finally asks you what you think. Here’s your chance to be the good friend you like being with her. You offer a few tidbits of sage, carefully worded advice based on your outside perspective and empathic intuition. Each bit of advice is met with a "yes, but..." and a tenuous excuse for why your suggestions just won’t work for her.
She squeezes your arm and says something about how she envies your simple life and how wonderful it must be to have things always just work out for you. After she leaves, energized, eyes sparkling, telling you how much she counts on you for being a friend who’ll always listen to her, you sigh with relief. You’re exhausted just from following her disjointed thoughts and emotional stories.
Energy Leaks with Clients
Maybe you know this one:
A new client contacts you for energy healing, having seen your card at a coffee shop. She shows up early for her appointment and bristles when you ask her to kindly wait because you're just in the middle of something.
After the intake form she explains that she’s on disability and she can’t pay your regular fee. Would you work with her pro-bono? Just for a few weeks? Because she heard you’re an amazing healer and she really needs your help. If she could just get a handle on her Fibromayalgia, she could go back to work and be able to put food on the table for her two kids.
As an empath, you feel her suffering. You see her beat-up car outside with the child seat, knowing how hard it must be to be a single mum. You naturally want to relieve her suffering. If you could just help her get a leg up, it could make all the difference. Who are you to not help someone in need if you can? So you agree to see her once a week, pro-bono until her symptoms improve.
But over the weeks you notice she’s missing appointments and she’s not doing her part to continue the healing inbetween sessions. When she does show up, smelling of cigarette smoke, sometimes she's stoned. You start to resent her for taking advantage of your kindness. Doesn’t she see that you are doing her a favour? How can she afford to be smoking and not even offer you some compensation for your time? Is she even serious about getting better?
Yet when you have these thoughts about her, you feel guilty. You feel like a bad person for thinking of yourself first. You tell yourself it must be so hard to be her and not to judge. So you quickly bury those thoughts because that's not very spiritual of you, is it?
Over-Givers and Over-Takers
Both of these dynamics clearly point out imbalances in the exchange of energy between the players. This is why it's called an Energy Leak.
Player 1 over-gives and Player 2 over-takes.
If there isn’t an equal exchange of energy back and forth (through listening to your friend without getting a word in edgewise or giving pro-bono sessions for zero in return, not even appreciation), the energy won't flow back and forth.
This creates no momentum, which is what loving healing energy naturally wants to do.
The healing energy goes one way and doesn't come back, essentially creating a sucking black hole. This creates the same dynamic as energy vampirism and it's why you feel bad afterwards.
The positive energy you put out doesn’t ‘ping back’. It doesn’t affect the receiver in a positive way because they are not open to what you’re offering. They can’t receive it, appreciate it, or return the energy in an appropriate token of exchange.
No good feelings are produced because there’s no moment when you can say to yourself: My friend/ client values what I have to offer and just look at her now, simplifying and changing her life for the better! I am making a difference!"
When your friend squeezes your arm to tell you how much she envies your simple life and how everything just comes so easy for you, in one sentence you now have confirmation that every time you opened up to her about your troubles, she was never really listening. How invalidating is that? How could she think your life just magically flows with no effort?
What's worse, you can see how she's trying to manipulate you with guilt (over your amazing, easy-peasy life) into giving over more good energy to her.
You know she’ll be back on your doorstep next week with another drama, which she will say she needs to "keep things exciting". In the next breath she'll tell you if you can't handle it (when it's not a question of competence but willingness) then you're not her "real friend".
She'll take your boundary as a sign of rejection and punish you for it.
The emotional drain you feel from listening to her unpack all her emotions? The resulting feeling of being manipulated through your sensitivity and empathy? That’s the energy leak.
The same with the client who wants your services for free but isn’t willing to do the work or even show up for her appointments. You’re giving out and the exchange is zero. She’s not giving anything back- no effort, no appreciation, there's no healing momentum to and fro. She’s only taking. That’s an energy leak.
So, what's an empath to do?
Our job as empaths is to recognize these kinds of black holes and put an end to them. Yep, I know it sounds unfair that we should have to do the heavy lifting, but let me explain.
Firstly, let me tell you a hard truth. The best way to unplug from an energy leak is to end the relationship or at least end the exchange of energy as much as possible.
This is the best way to set a boundary for an emapth who has not yet figured out how to manage their psychic energy through energy work.
If that just made you cringe, here's a video by Dandapani on why you shouldn't feel guilty about unplugging from energy vampires.
I cannot tell you just to do energy work. That's not how it works. You have to learn how to consciously unplug and strengthen your energetic boundaries and the only way to do this is by learning to recognize them. Then you can apply energy techniques with more efficacy.
But the cool thing is, once you have done enough inner work and raised your frequency as a result, you'll automatically lower your tolerance for energy leaks and you'll naturally stop attracting those kinds of relationships as your conscious intent develops.
But if you're not ready to stop giving over your energy to these kinds of leaks for whatever reason, you must concede that you will always be losing some energy to that person or activity you refuse to give up.
Why are energy leaks so harmful for empaths especially?
Not managed properly, our empathic gifts can turn into a curse.
For an empath, energy leaks are really detrimental. They're not just draining, they're destructive to our very nature. These kind of prolonged energy leaks can jade us or even lead us to disconnect from our own needs and feelings.
And an empath who is numb is not an empath at all.
What’s worse, the more we continue in this behaviour, the more our Higher Self will orchestrate more obvious encounters with ‘over-takers’: narcissists, abusers and manipulators, until we get the lesson.
That lesson is to put ourselves first and strengthen our boundaries. We must learn to not 'over-give'. Over-giving implies an imbalance. It's good to give, but not OVER-give. We need to give in proportion to what we take, also.
Enforcing healthy boundaries means we are acting as if we value ourselves, our time and especially our energy.
Your Higher Self will always try to help you remember that you're here to live out YOUR life, in its highest expression, usually in service to others. But to be of good use in service, we must learn how to stay vital by replenishing and cherishing OUR energy first.
This is really hard for empaths to learn because we identify so strongly with our roles as healers and helpers. Some of us really have trouble receiving and putting our own needs first, thinking that we aren’t being loving or spiritual otherwise.
One of the culprits is this program that's been running in the Human Collective Consciousness for a long time: That in order to be spiritual, you have to be a martyr.
The Rescuer Archetype & Martyr Program
Contrary to the ancient collective programming, obsessively rescuing and intefering or tyring to fix everything for others only deprives them of opportunities to become self-sufficient. It stunts emotional maturation and creates a deadly kind of co-dependency.
For the empathic healer it opens the door for resentment. You're doing all the heavy lifting and you perceive your client, lover or friend as riding the gravy train. Resentment poisions relationships because it kills compassion.
You start to feel victimized by the person to whom you are leaking too much power. This can leave you feeling impotent and unable to act, which breeds more resentment. There's no reason, apart from programming, to think that other people have more power than you.
Seeing others through this Victim/ victimizer lens is a problem in perception. Why can't you see the power in yourself? Why must you project it outside yourself?
This attitude alone leads to energy leaks more than any other reason. Perhaps it's thinking you don't have the power to keep yourself from absorbing others' negativity. That's a recipe for turning yourself into a dumping station.
In reality, you're not powerless. You just need to learn some energy techniques for shielding and de-cording. Then you'll be in a much better position.
The gift of being an empath is your profound capacity to feel compassion for others.
If your heart chakra starts to close, if you build walls around your heart through resentment and bitterness, you will shut down your gift of empathy.
Then you can wave goodbye to your destiny as a gifted Healer.
Until we really learn the lesson and integrate it, that being a martyr is a conditioned program the Empath came here to overwrite, we will perpetuate the cycle. That’s not helping future generations of empaths.
In a "selfie" world of increasing narcissism, the world needs more empaths. Especially ones with good boundaries!
We need to change our signal to the universe, through our actions, through saying no, by not picking up the phone or bending over backwayrds. As long as we are over-givers, we will continue to unconsciously attract our perfect karmic partners: over-takers, abusers, manipulators, sociopaths and narcissists.
What's your experience with energy leaks as an empath? Are you diligent about culling energy leaks? Let me know in the comments :)