Saturday, February 12, 2011

Compassionate Empathist

I learned something about myself last week. I am a compassionate empath. I heard a speaker talk about three types of empathy. You can be a cognitive empath like counselors who can hear people's stresses all day and know their problems. However, when they go home, all of the complaints they have been hearing is put out of their minds. An emotional empath feels people's problems. A compassionate empath actually acts as if the problem is their own. That's how I am!

This explains so much. I am an extravert yet I need some time alone. I get drained when I pray hard for others. The biggest lightbulb that went off was how much I was not suited to be a social worker. The day one of my clients did not show up because she was hospitalized after trying to commit suicide the night before was the day I decided to seek another career. Luckily, Brock and I were about to get married and begin our new ministry together.

The speaker said that compassionate empaths are great at helping others, but they need to choose who and when to help. Otherwise, they feel obligated and end up resenting the ones they are helping because they give so much of themselves. I am processing what this means for me. I am trying to learn more about this and myself.


Haley said...

That's interesting. I would love to read/hear more about that.

Amanda said...
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Mom in Shepherd said...

I am the compassionate empath also. I know this drives your dad crazy because I we have two different responses to these type situations. He helps me have a better perspective when I get bogged down though. And I like to think I help him to be more compassionate.

Caroline said...

Choosing who and when to help...I really recognize that! Shutting off my sense of caring is not an option, that doesn't work even when I try really hard not to care sometimes! So I put thought and care into considering who I can help and who I must refer a.s.a.p., and also, who I need to kick out of my life!