5 Self-Care Action Steps You Need If You're An Energy-Sensitive Person

mbg Contributor By Tanya Carroll Richardson
mbg Contributor
Tanya Carroll Richardson is an author and professional intuitive, giving readings to clients all over the world.
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The year 2020 has been intense—especially in terms of collective energy. While energy isn't something we can see with the naked eye, it's something we can feel. Energy-sensitive empaths often feel the collective energy of a room, a group, or the world, in their own system—and this year made many energy-sensitive folks realize, while they want to help take better care of the world, they also need to take better care of themselves.

Self-care is the best energy shield or protection around, and my new book Self-Care for Empaths offers 100 exercises, quizzes, and rituals specifically designed for energy-sensitive people. Here are five reasons it's so important for empaths to practice self-care—particularly this year—plus action steps to get there:

1. Collective energy can affect your own energy levels and mood.

Empaths—people who are very sensitive to the energies and emotions of others—need to have a mindful relationship with the news cycle. It's important to stay informed about what's going on so you can be a change agent, ally, and do your part to make a difference. Yet 2020 taught many empaths they need a balanced relationship with news consumption.

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Self-care action step:

If your hyper-perceptive system is frazzled, drained, or overwhelmed, balance reading about the difficult stories with exposing yourself to stories of hope and connection: Listen to an inspiring TEDTalk or watch a video about a community pulling together. Do something to make a difference—whether it's making a donation, reaching out to a friend struggling because of world events, upping your activism, or volunteering. This will make you feel more in control and grounded.

2. You can create energy instead of mirroring or absorbing it.

Since energy-sensitive people pick up so easily on the energy around them, it's important they learn to anchor into their own energy—which they can get better at choosing and monitoring. This will be easier some days than others! In a year when a simple trip to the grocery store can be anxiety-inducing, small things like focusing on the beautiful colors of produce you pick out, or the gratitude you feel for being able to still get healthy food for your family might have created a lovely little energy bubble for yourself while you shopped.

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Self-care action step:

Learn what affects your energy in a positive way. Is it listening to your favorite music? Wearing clothes you love? Concentrating on a specific mantra? When you're around people who are dealing with challenging emotions and energy, remind yourself that you can create a little energy bubble for yourself that's nourishing. While you cannot choose your emotions—and it's important to honor the challenging ones—you don't have to just absorb everyone else's.

3. Focus is everything.

Where your focus goes, your energy flows. I recently had a client who wanted to get over a past lover and was finding it difficult. "Should I try to sever our energy cord or do some other ritual?" While rituals can be powerful, sometimes the most powerful way we disconnect from someone else or a group of people is to take our thoughts elsewhere.

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Self-care action step:

When you're focusing on something and it's not productive or helpful, only draining, don't fight with your mind—gently give it something else to focus on. It could be thoughts regarding a creative project you're excited about, something kind a loved one said to you recently, or a theme from a great movie you watched.

4. Sensitive people need daily grounding rituals.

For many of my empath clients sheltering alone during COVID-19 quarantine, daily rituals were a lifeline. It might have been a morning routine of meditation, pulling an inspiring oracle card, or journaling. These mindful moments to center and ground into your own energy can happen any time of day and often make sensitive people feel calmer, more resilient, and more present.

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Self-care action step:

What daily rituals help you reground and re-center? It might be taking the dogs for a walk around the neighborhood, listening to an uplifting podcast on your lunch break, a gentle Zoom yoga class, a beauty or skin care routine, or reading quietly before bed. These nourishing routines will give you greater energetic stamina to handle whatever's going on in your life or the world.

5. When your energy is scattered, come home to yourself.

Learning to identify signs that your energy is scattered is important for empaths—your thoughts might race, you could have trouble concentrating, you may feel more anxious, or you might be short or curt with people. These are indications that your hyper-perceptive system is overstimulated and needs a break. 

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Self-care action step:

Energy-sensitive folks need what I call "retreat-and-recover time" on a regular basis. Because empaths' default wiring is to tune in to what's around them, they can pick up on a lot. Retreating and recovering involves doing restorative, low-stimulation activities either alone or with others. It might look like having a chill, lazy Saturday hanging around the house with your partner, doing a 1,000-piece puzzle with your child, or getting lost in a solo creative hobby. Plan for retreat-and-recover time daily and weekly.

It's Self-Care Awareness Month and an ideal time to pause, reflect on your self-care practices, and get more support for yourself.

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