A few weeks ago, something happened to remind me how important energetic boundaries are. I was staying in an AirBnB in Croatia for a month. The woman who ran it, who was in her late 50s, came to the door to kindly bring our laundry upstairs. We stood at the door having a conversation and I asked her how long she had lived there for. Before I knew it, she was telling me about the tragedies in her life and the issues she had with her husband, who also lived downstairs with her. She also told me about her problematic neighbors. It was a very one-way conversation, and when she left, I felt completely drained yet very stressed at the same time. I started worrying about their relationship, our safety, and the local area.
What’s worse is that once she’d dumped her energy into me, she tried to seal it by saying ‘don’t tell anyone’, effectively meaning that energy would now just live inside me permanently.
What had happened? I’d basically absorbed her energy while giving her mine. Looking back, I saw how I had fallen into some old patterns. By listening intently with my whole body, and by not laying down the necessary boundaries with her from the offset, I now had to spend some considerable time clearing her energy from my system. I could see how I had subtly opened up my field and given cues to encourage her to continue.
Now, here’s where this gets difficult. People suffer, and as a (retiring) empath, I can’t stand seeing that. I always believed that it was in my nature to help heal everyone I came across, and that just because I could absorb their energy, I should do it.
After years of doing this, I can safely say it did nothing but drain me of my inherent energetic resources and actually prevent me from truly helping people in an effective way. It also prevented them from learning and evolving on their own path.
Here’s how it started for me and how it may start for many of us. I was a highly sensitive, energetically open 10-year-old whose mother had just died and whose dad had placed me in a new stepfamily. Because I was so open and innocent, certain family members started unconsciously pouring their unwanted energies into me, and I had no protection. I’m talking shame, guilt and anger—a lot of the shadow energies they didn’t want to process. I took them all. I was the youngest in the family and I didn’t want to be abandoned. A survival instinct kicked in where I must have ‘agreed’ to take their projected energies in for fear of what would happen if I didn’t. So I became the scapegoat.
I developed a firm belief that I had to be other people’s energetic dumping ground to survive. And I also believed that others weren’t capable of processing their own stuff, but I was, so I would ‘take one for the team’.
This recent incident reminded me that those old patterns still reside in me, despite the deep inner work I do. Especially when someone has done something kind for me, like cooking or helping with the laundry, part of me feels like I ‘owe’ that person my energy. In reality, I don’t owe them anything, as they have kindly chosen to help me. And if I did owe them, I’d rather pay them back with household chores than absorb their sticky energies.
Thankfully, because I’d spent a few years working on energetic boundaries, I was able to clearly see what had happened and rectify it that day. Learning these skills has been life-changing, and practicing them several times a day has helped me to keep my aura and energetic field as clean as possible.
For anyone reading this and thinking ‘yes, that’s me!’ I highly recommend you find some energy clearing and boundary strengthening techniques which work for you. You will probably notice a growing strength and clarity growing inside of you as your authentic energy emerges and starts to shine brighter in the world.