I just had an encounter with a storm cloud.
Not an actual storm cloud (it’s blue skies and sunny for Sydney today!) but the human version. This miserable, dreary, negative person came into my office and immediately changed the energy of the room. I was feeling really light and happy before but then afterwards I felt bad, sad and just generally yuck.
But HANG ON Michelle – don’t you always say We control how we feel?? Why are you blaming someone else for feeling like shit?
I do believe that we are 100% in control of our thoughts and feelings. We are also human and are bound to naturally react to changes in our environment. It is after the initial reaction (which for me was feeling crappy) that we are able to assess our emotional GPS and ask ourselves “is this really the route I want to be driving?”
So back to the storm cloud. It blew away to go rain on someone else’s parade but I was left there in a puddle of negative poop. Which made me question why someone’s mood had such an affect on me.
Do you ever get called “sensitive”? Do you pick up on the vibes of other people quite easily?
I know I certainly do. I’m a sensitive soul and have quite a strong empathetic character. I also know I’m not alone. A lot of us are “feelers” – we feel a broad range of emotions. I would say it helps us to live the spectrum of life in all it’s glory. But the downside is that the highs come with the lows. We also find that some things have a stronger impact on us that what it would other people. But let me tell you something, my dear…
Being sensitive is NOT a sign of weakness.
Just because you feel things stronger than other people, doesn’t mean your weak or that you need to “toughen up”. On the contrary, having empathy for other people allows you to provide much needed support for those who are in desperate need. You are the one people can go to when they need a shoulder to cry on or someone to listen to them. And THAT is a tough job!
An important lesson all sensitive souls need to learn is how to help others without being dragged down at the same time.
You can’t help anyone from the bottom of a well.
Translation: you aren’t able to be the beautiful sensitive person you are supposed to be if you are allowing yourself to get caught up and brought down by the energy vampires around you.
So how can you protect yourself from storm clouds? Here are my top tips for ultimate wet-weather protection:
- Remind yourself that their attitude is their issue. Not yours.
- Don’t agree with them. If they are wanting to be negative, let them – don’t join them. No problem was ever solved in a bitchfest.
- If they are looking to you to join them in a bitchfest, just say “that must suck. I’m here for you buddy”. Allow them to go through the motions. They might just need to be a storm cloud for a bit.
- Reduce the amount of time you spend with serial storm clouds. Ain’t nobody got time for toxic people!
- Look inwards and ask yourself “how do I want to feel right now?” and go there. From that space, you will be better able to help who ever needs your help.
- Recognise that not everyone wants your help or wants to feel happy. Some people aren’t ready for the message of “only you make yourself feel like crap”. Some people like playing the blame game. So let them and just move on.
- After an encounter with a storm cloud, do something fun & positive to make yourself smile & laugh!
It’s like the safety instructions they give you on a plane before take off: Attend to yourself first before helping others. Make sure you are feeling stable and OK before spending energy on others.
I’d love to hear from you. Are you a sensitive soul? How do you cope with storm clouds in your life? Reply in the comments below and join me on facebook to surround yourself with other awesome sensitive peeps!