All my life as long as I can remember, I have felt other people’s emotions. As a child I learned to survive in my dysfunctional home by feeling what others were feeling and doing what I could to fix things. This tendency became a habit I have taken into adulthood.
What I have discovered is when I am around friends and family, my heart is open. I also notice as I look into people’s eyes and listen to them with my ears and my heart, I am empathically reading their needs, assessing their comfort and evaluating what I can do to help them feel more ease or happiness. In reading peoples’ needs, I’m picking up their emotions and giving my personal power away. Hence, I often walk away from a group of people feeling emotions that don’t make sense with my experience. Then the headache and body aches set in and I am feeling physical symptoms from emotions that aren’t mine.
I have always catered to those around me to take care of them, solve discomforts, find solutions and generally sweep the room to manage other’s needs in order to help my comfort and level of safety. I’m 66 years old and my caretaking skills are perfected!
As I gain a deeper understanding of myself, I have become more aware of this behavior. It has become clearer and clearer this caretaking behavior is not serving me.
I have made it a lifelong practice when I discover something about myself that I want to change, I figure out a remedy. The above discovery is no exception. Through tears of distress I ask over and over again for understanding of this dynamic. I’m sure if I understand it then I can remedy it. Before sleeping I pray for clarity, understanding and help. I feel the emotion of my prayer because I desperately want to change this behavior. I can feel my fierceness in my request. I am so done picking up on other emotions and carrying them with me throughout the day.
This morning I awoke with understanding and a direction for my remedy. My first step is gratitude as I thank the wisdom of my higher self. I am so grateful for the support I feel from my wisdom within.
My plan of action: With fierceness I hold true to my desire to not give myself away. I ask for strength in holding my boundaries. My heart is open, and while I choose to hold a healthy boundary, I simply state, “If there’s anything you need, let me know.” There, I have done my part. I don’t need to read into people’s behaviors to figure out what they need. They will tell me if they choose to.
It’s imperative for me to have strong personal boundaries, to not caretake others and instead, take care of myself. I am a healer and a teacher. People in this world are suffering. I am guided to help others, and the helping has to be on my terms. Otherwise, I am powerless.