Day 110 of 365: as empaths, it’s not our responsibility to feel other people’s shit.

Right. So. I’m in the process of a mini awakening. FUCKIN’ ABOUT TIME. I’VE BEEN IN THE THICK OF IT FOR MONTHS.

The times of suicidality and deep despair suck. (That’s putting it lightly.) And I will say that I appreciate the folks who have reached out and been like: “JEN. YOU CLEARLY NEED HELP. GO TO A DOCTOR.” or “I’VE HEARD THIS HORSE TRANQUILIZER HELPS WITH DEPRESSION” or “TRY THIS ESSENTIAL OIL” or “HAVE YOU TRIED COLONICS?” Because I know your heart is in the right place.

But here’s the thing.

Pain is the ultimate teacher. I signed up to learn a LOT of lessons in this lifetime and, due to my stubbornness and occasional attempt at ignoring my life path, pain pays me a lot of visits. When I’m in the flow and taking care of myself and staying grounded in my own truth, I rarely experience internal pain. (Or if I do, it’s short-lived.) When I get off my path or stop caring for my energetic/emotional boundaries or ignore my inner truth, I inevitably end up in a big pit of despair.

But I do not want a “quick fix.” And I certainly don’t want to numb myself.

Because what happens with quick fixes or drugs? It helps in the present moment (which is, at times, necessary. If it’s a life or death thing, I hope I will choose life+quick fix over death.)… But the underlying issue isn’t dealt with. As such, it will continue bubbling up until it gets my attention. And, once it does get my attention, the issue will be even BIGGER than it was before.

I’m not saying anything negative about medication. I’ve found a specific anti-depressant that took me from months of barely being able to sit up, to going for jogs after taking it for a couple weeks, to now having a steady job and steady friendships and beyond. So. As much as I want to give Big Pharm the middle finger, I’ll keep it lowered for now. I will admit, from personal experience, that medication can help.

But it’s not the be-all-end-all. In my early twenties, I had a dear friend who was on four different medications. Two different anti-depressants, an anti-anxiety, and something for ADHD. She was still miserable, and her doctor was about to prescribe her an anti-psychotic.

I look back now and am like: “AAHHHH NOOOOOO!!”

Because, yea. Starting a new med can help us feel better for a little bit. (Or maybe you are a person whose issue is purely chemical and a daily tiny pill is what helps you live a happy, healthy life. If so, good for you.) But it is my belief that the underlying issues will always resurface.

When I chose to get back on an anti-depressant a year ago, I had a long talk with my therapist about the choice, and about what it meant. She called it a life vest. She said it would help me navigate the rough seas without staying under for too long. I wouldn’t be able to reach the same depths, but I also would feel less like I was about to drown.

At first, I felt like a failure. Here I was, an all-natural hippie who just wrote a book about getting off of all drugs/numbing substances, now choosing to take a pharmaceutical to change my brain chemistry.


But, when all judgment is removed, the bottom line is that I feel better than I did before, and I didn’t kill myself. So. I’d venture to call that a WIN.

Anyway. PAIN IS AN EXCELLENT TEACHER. If we listen to what it’s trying to teach us. Otherwise it just sucks. 🙂 Oftentimes I get so stuck in the pain and in the empath martyrdom mindset of LET ME FEEL THIS FOR ALL THE PEOPLE WHO CANNOT. I AM HELPING THE WORLD.

I had the privilege of speaking with a fellow reiki master today, the woman who years ago taught me the basic foundation of this spiritual world after I had my spontaneous awakening. She opened my eyes to the fact that me feeling other people’s shit is another expression of codependency. Who am I to say what people can and cannot handle? I am doing a disservice to others if I process their shit. (If pain is a teacher, then I’m preventing others from learning.)

This felt a little counter-intuitive at first, because I had recently channeled about how my feeling pain and staying on earth rather than exiting stage left helped to retrain the collective consciousness to do the same.

But then I realized…

THIS IS IN REGARDS TO MY OWN EMOTIONS. My OWN pain. By walking my own individual path, healthily processing my own shit, and living a mindful+aware+authentic life, I am helping the collective consciousness FAR more than if I sob under my covers and sleep for 20 hours a day while “helping to process the painful emotions of recent world events.”

And so, in accordance with her recommendations, after I got off the phone I said aloud: “EVERYTHING THAT IS NOT MINE, I SEND YOU BACK TO YOUR RIGHTFUL OWNERS, AND I SEND YOU WITH LOVE… AND WITH A LEAVE-ME-THE-FUCK-ALONE-SO-I-CAN-LIVE-MY-OWN-LIFE-PLEASE.” It’s been an hour and I feel much lighter already, simply by setting that intention aloud.

Lately my internal whiny voice has been like, “I AM DOING ALL THE RIGHT THINGS; WHY AM I STILL IN SO MUCH PAIN AND WHY AM I FEELING OTHER PEOPLE’S SHIT?!” I meditate daily and write daily and pray daily and eat a healthy diet and go to support groups and one-on-one therapy and and and and.

It normally works.

BUT… When a physical illness or injury pops up… Or if it’s “cold/flu/allergy season”… And we have to up our self care to be sure to stay physically healthy.

The same goes for emotions and energy. When emotional or energetic dis-ease pops up, it’s important to continue the normal self care (and not, say, QUIT EVERYTHING BECAUSE CLEARLY IT ISN’T WORKING ANYWAY) … (AHEM.) and up our game.

What does that look like for me?

Well, I’m going to clean my living space. I’m going to declutter it, throw away what I don’t need, set a donation pile aside for what will better fit with others. I’m going to clean the spiderwebs and dust. Then, I’m going to sage while listening to holy music. I’ll have candles lit, incense burning, and do all the SMELLS & BELLS to amplify my intention to increase the strength of my energetic and emotional boundaries.

And then, I’ll probably pray. Not really sure to whom/what. Probably to Love. Or to Peace. Or to Safety.

And that’s it. I’m going to clear my house and my energy and put up a protective + loving field… Just as I’d do if I was taking care of someone else in my current position.



Posted by

Some days, I paint. Other days, I write. And rap. And tell stories. And do comedy. And doodle. And [attempt to] bake. And, one week out of every month, I merge with my sofa and sob about mortality and things like the existence of air and how we can't live without it and how utterly claustrophobic that is to consider. I'm relatively particular. And this is a place for me to share ALL the quirks.

One thought on “Day 110 of 365: as empaths, it’s not our responsibility to feel other people’s shit.

  1. thank you, I needed this. It’s funny because I’m literally in the middle of a blog and I thought ‘hm, I haven’t read Jen’s last blog on her year endeavor’ and this gave me odd hope.

Leave a Reply