If You Have These 30 Traits, You Can Consider Yourself An Empath

If you absorb the feeling of other people, it could just one of many signs you are an empath.

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Being an empath may seem like a burden. Your emotions can run high and cause anxiety and moodiness — but all of those feelings can be used to provide you with greater insights into life.

What is an empath?

An empath is someone who experiences the emotions of others deeply. The experience including both pain and joy. Empaths also feel more strongly for others and can recognize emotions from subtle facial expressions.


Empaths emotionally connected to others in a profound way. They are able to read the significance of complex emotions and are expert listeners. Being an empath also means you see the world differently than others in a way that’s quite special.

According to Dr. Judith Orloff, author of “The Empath’s Survival Guide,” not only are there different types of empaths, but certain characteristics as well. The types of empaths include emotional empaths, intuitive empaths, physical empaths, medium empaths, earth empaths, and more.

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Traits and charactertistics of an empath include feeling the emotions of others, being introverted, having a strong sense of intuition, feeling emotionally drained by negative emotions and energy, and needing alone time to recharge after they absorb emotions. Intimate relationships may be hard to form as well.

You or someone you know may be an empath. If you are, you're probably the person people run to for advice, consoling, and just a friendly presence. That’s an amazing power to have.

30 Traits of an Empath

1. You have a deep sense of "knowing."

Empaths have a deep sense of understanding emotional significance that’s unwavering and unquestionable. Their emotional knowledge comes with pinpoint accuracy in reading a person or situation. They are capable of reading others without obvious cues and can describe what’s really going on beneath the surface.

They know if someone is being dishonest or not speaking their truths. The more attuned they are to their empathy, the stronger and more frequent the knowing and reading abilities will be.


2. You're an effective listener and communicator.

Highly empathic people have a natural ability to listen with all their senses acutely attuned, which allows the person who is talking to feel as though they are being heard and understood. Empaths can intuitively guide a conversation with sincere compassion and enable even the most reserved person to respond and express their deepest and most painful thoughts and feelings comfortably.

The unspoken confidence and trust of the empath will often weigh up the need of the other person so they can act in the best interest of that person, even if it means risking ongoing relationships.

3. You get overwhelmed in public places.

Shopping malls, supermarkets, or stadiums, anywhere masses of people gather can be overwhelming and even lead to panic attacks or anxiety due to the myriad of emotions being sensed. Until this is contained and manageable, the empath tends to steer clear of being around large groups of people.

4. You feel other people's emotions, pains, illnesses, and stresses.

Due to heightened sensitivities to emotional and physical energy, it’s a very common occurrence for empaths to take on the emotions of others and not even realize it and to directly mirroring those emotions as though they was the empaths own.


This can cause difficulty to distinguish what emotions belong to oneself or another. Life can become overwhelming. Self-awareness can bring a greater degree of control, and the ability to determine whose emotions are whose will help the empath not get caught up in the outside emotions.

5. You experience mood swings and may be unpredictable and needy.

Empaths can experience extreme highs and lows, which makes them unpredictable in behavior at the best of times. One minute they can be happy, and the next minute feel sad and withdrawn, which is not always the result of how they actually feel, but what they have picked up on in others. This can be confusing, let alone depressing.

They can also be very demanding of attention, be it for good reasons or not. If they feel they are not being heard, they will act out and come across as needy, even narcissistic, although they would seriously question and oppose the latter.

Just because one may have strong empathy at some point in time does not mean they are not akin to being so overwhelmed with it they fall heavily towards narcissism.


6. You're sensitive to chaos in TV shows, radio programs, movies, and real-life.

Violence, cruelty, shocking scenes of physical or emotional pain, or depictions of abuse can bring an empath to tears. They may even feel physically ill, bewildered, and struggle to comprehend such acts as being justified. One sure way of dealing with this is to turn off the TV or radio or disassociate yourself from the chaos.

7. You're prone to illness and physical pain.

Because of the onslaught of emotional energy, empaths are highly sensitive and, in most cases, they don’t know how to deal with this. It can become problematic and manifest into varying forms of physical illnesses or diseases.

It’s vital to learn about emotional energy, distinguish its origin, and apply the tools that will allow the empath to move forward with balanced wellness. Existing illnesses and diseases can potentially be laid to rest once and for all in doing so.

8. Others are drawn to trust you like a magnet.

Others, including strangers, are drawn to an empath like a magnet, and find it easy to express themselves and resonate with them on a deep, meaningful level. They will often feel like they have known each other for many years even though they may have just met.


People have this innate sense of trust and feel comfortable and relaxed in their presence, yet are conscious they would not normally feel this way.

9. You feel constant fatigue.

They are drawn to helping others, and in doing so take on more than their fair share to personally cope mentally, spiritually, emotionally and physically, and will experience constant fatigue. They may need to take daily catnaps or retreats to replenish their energy and feel revitalized.

10. You have a tendency toward addictive behavior.

This can be caused by wanting to escape from what they are bombarded with or a desperate need to feel connected. Their heightened sensitivities more than often don’t come with an awareness of how to deal with it (the energies they pick up on like sponges), let alone what’s happening.

They will adopt addictive tendencies to drown out, numb, and distract them, such as drinking, smoking, taking drugs, binge-eating, or gambling. Unfortunately for some, doing so (i.e., taking drugs) can heighten their sensitivities even more and create greater issues.


11. You are involved in healing, holistic health, and wellness.

Whether it’s a career as a nurse, doctor, physiotherapist, neurosurgeon, psychologist or massage therapist, homeopath, naturopath, Chinese medicine practitioner, and social workers, or a veterinarian, those who have strong empathy from a young age are often drawn to these fields due to a pull to helping heal people and/or animals.

Strict and long-term education and work protocols, however, are known to stifle one’s innate empathy and remarkably deter them from what drew them to the field in the first place. Once in the field, there’s a great need to be aware of one's empathy and not become overwhelmed in taking on others’ energy, as it can become a catalyst in burning out and walking away altogether.

12. You have a rabid curiosity in seeking the truth.

Driven by curiosity to understand the intricacies of life, and an intense desire to seek the truth and question much of everything until they feel a resonance to any given answer, if it doesn’t sit well with them, their curiosity will grow. They will continue to seek answers even if it takes a lifetime.

13. You are interested in spirituality and metaphysical arts.

They can be drawn to the unexplainable, paranormal, metaphysics, and have a deep sense of spirituality (not necessarily religion, even though they may lean towards such in order to find a sense of belonging). They will dabble in many areas until they find their niche, and they will actively pursue it throughout their lifetime.


14. You feel drawn to ancient and indigenous cultures.

Empaths are drawn to ancient cultures that adhere to long-held traditions cloaked in universal laws as they embody innate logic, common sense, and practical uncomplicated ways in which to do all manner of things. They will often shake their head in disbelief when others do and act in a way that opposes universal laws.

15. You have ancestral lineage to empaths.

From a young age, they are the child that listens to the stories of old that are passed down throughout the generations. They have a genuine interest in wanting to know where they came from, who their ancestors were, and what they did in their lifetime.

They will grow up to be keepers of the family tree and possess a collection of photo albums and heirlooms. Feeling a sense of connectedness holds great importance and, as they learn this, they will be the ones to pass this knowledge on to their children.

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16. You are a quiet achiever and strong leader.

Although they are quiet achievers who prefer to do the hard work behind the scenes, they will often be found in positions of leadership due to their ability to be focused, organized, and supportive, quick thinking, and capable of inspiring, and motivating others with magnificent poise.

They are more comfortable in giving sincere praise to others rather than accepting it and are often found meditating to maintain a balance of harmony.

17. You possess creative talents.

A great love for expressing their creativity as artists, musicians, singers, dancers, performing artists, acting, poets, and designers, empaths love to tell a story and can captivate an audience through a vivid imagination.

There's an ease in which they can take you directly into the picture, as though you were actually experiencing it firsthand.


18. You have a love of nature and animals.

They are inclined to have a pet as they love to give and receive the unconditional love that comes from dogs, cats, rabbits, and living creatures. They are often advocates or supporters in the prevention of cruelty to animals.

They enjoy being outdoors, amongst the forest or high in the mountains and are content being connected to the land. They will often escape from the busy world to rejuvenate their senses.

19. You find water to have powerful cleansing properties.

Be it swimming in the sea, floating in the pool, walking in the rain, a long soak in the tub, or a hot shower to cleanse and wash away the troubles of the day, they sense the healing properties of water. It’s a reconnection to the womb for the safety and comfort it held and can be recaptured at that moment.

20. You have a need for solitude.

Although they can be very sociable, they also like to escape from the hustle and bustle, and are content with their own company, enjoying the tranquillity that comes with being in a quiet space.


That means reading a book, watching a movie, drawing a picture, or pursuing a hobby — they love to just relax. They will display this tendency from childhood and throughout life.

21. You often experience boredom, are easily distracted and spend a lot of time daydreaming.

They have a need to be stimulated and focused on one project or another and will give all their energy to any given task, whether it’s at school, work, or home life. If the task fails to stimulate their senses, they become bored, distracted, and will either begin to fidget or doodle or be off in their minds daydreaming.

22. You are an adventure seeker who loves travel and spontaneity.

They enjoy spontaneity in their life by exploring all that life has to offer and will seek out adventures, travel to far-off places, or find enjoyable activities nearby. They enjoy being free-spirited, leaving the constraints of the world behind them, and if they don’t get to do this as often as they would like, they will become quite restless and agitated.

23. You feel weighted down by clutter and are conscious of energy and flow.

An awareness of energy comes naturally, and they will feel weighed down by clutter and chaos. Although they may collect things, everything has a place and order, and they will constantly do clutter-clearing to allow the balance of energy (flow) in their environment. They have the ability to place furniture or even plant gardens in a way that energy flows in and around everything.


24. You're a rule breaker.

Routine, repetition, and rules can become mundane for the creative empath who continuously seek ways in which to express their loves, the things they enjoy in life. If they are told they cannot do something within reason, they will find a way that they can; the willingness to challenge themselves goes hand in hand with being spontaneous.

25. You have great enthusiasm and appreciation for life.

Bursting with energy and an appreciation towards life, and living it as fully as they can, empaths are filled with enthusiasm. However, the downside is they can exert so much energy that they will burn out and need to take time to recuperate. When they do, they will bounce back and give themselves fully.

They don’t do anything in halves; it’s all or nothing, and they tend to feel disappointed if others around them don’t share the same zest for life as they do.


26. You are a humanitarian, peacemaker, and/or mediator.

Conflict is extremely unsettling, regardless if it’s with family, friends, colleagues, or even complete strangers, or if it’s direct or indirect, locally or internationally. They will voice their feelings towards such, and endeavor to find a peaceful resolution even if it means being a mediator.

They have a love and respect for all people and cultures, and vehemently oppose wars, political unrest, cruelty, racism, hatred, and separatism, as they believe deeply that we can all live together in harmony. They will advocate this in one way or another, if not by being pivotal to the establishment of humanitarian organizations or in support of.

27. You are sensitive to antique, vintage or second-hand items.

Holding objects such as rings, jewelry, clothing, ornaments, or touching door handles to old buildings, or entering historical homes, can bring through very vivid and accurate accounts of the owner(s) history and life experiences.

This can be extremely daunting and off-putting to those sensitive to picking up energies, whereas those who are more aware and in control of their empathy will feel at ease, and be drawn to such.


28. You are a lucid dreamer.

The dream realm is not just a meaningless place where one goes when they are asleep. An empath often has vivid dreams from a very young age and will have lucid dreams where they are awake in their dreams and have an ability to control certain aspects by willful thought alone.

They are capable of describing in graphic detail the dream content. They also have a strong desire to interpret the dream, knowing that it has direct relevance to their physically awake life. In doing so, they can find answers to guide them well.

It’s not unusual for an empath to at some point in time in their lives to have experienced an out-of-body experience or astral travel, be it voluntarily or not.

29. You're a lover, not a fighter.

Empaths love to love others and be loved in return and will seek meaningful relationships throughout their entire lives, though they are not always adept at self-love as they are inclined to give of themselves freely to others. They can grow up thinking (by what they learn from society) that it’s selfish to love yourself, and that it’s narcissistic in behavior.


They do not like to be caught up in fights, be it verbal or physical, as communication comes easily to them; however, they will not be passive, but they will aim for a peaceful resolution as quickly as possible. They will get extremely frustrated if the other person is not willing to resolve the conflict fully, as they don’t see the logic in dragging things on.

30. You could be considered a visionary, entrepreneur and/or problem-solver.

Intense visionaries blended with their adventurous love of life streak and enthusiasm, empaths will dabble in many ventures and business opportunities, and find ways in which to expand their potential, feed their creative minds, and do the things they love to do.

They have this instinct, knowing they are capable of achieving greater things, and will constantly think outside the box and push through any and all boundaries (often against the odds), with focused energy. Where there is a problem, there immediately lies an answer, and they won’t stop until they find it — even if that means inventing it themselves.

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Christel Broederlow is a researcher, writer, author, and teacher of innate empathy.