Do you find that some people in your life lift you up whereas others pull you down or leave you drained? No one is positive 100% of the time, but if you consistently find that your energy is being depleted when you are around certain people, it could be a sign that you are dealing with an energy vampire.
How Do You Recognize An Energy Vampire?
An energy vampire is someone who drains your energy. Energy vampires may consistently engage in some of the following behaviours:
- Speak and behave negatively
- Engage in gossip about others
- Put others down and belittling them and their lives
- Put themselves down (and try to elicit sympathetic energy from others)
- Engaging in a victim mentality
- Not taking responsibility
- Expect others to do things that they don't want to do
- Take others for granted
- Talk too much or too little, leaving their relationships out of balance
- Overload you with their problems
- Play games and manipulate others
- Be demanding and expect things their way
- Try to make themselves feel better by putting others down
- Reveling in others misfortune
We need to remember no one is perfect; the key to recognizing an energy vampire is the consistency of their behaviours and how it makes you feel over time.
So how do we deal with an energy vampire?
How To Deal With Energy Vampires
1. Listen To Your Intuition
Listen to what your feelings are telling you. If you always feel uncomfortable around a certain person or when a certain situation with a person arises, take notice and see what that feeling is telling you. Our feelings are a good indicator as to what is going on in our relationships. If you cannot put your finger on why you feel a certain way, just observe the feeling for now and explore what is going on. You many notice that though a friend is always offloading her problems on to you. It is good to be there for our friends at times, but if the dynamic of your relationship means that you seem to always be the listener, it could be time to try and get some balance back. You could try to approach your conversations with your friend in a way that leaves you both able to share, for example.
2. Stay Grounded
Stay grounded and don't allow yourself to get pulled in by an energy vampire. Others can only take our energy if we allow them to, though it may happen subtly which is why it is good to be aware of what is happening and why you might be feeling the way you do so you can prevent it in future.
3. Protect Yourself
Practices like meditation and yoga can help to build up your strength around energy vampires and stop others from taking your energy. There are energy protection exercises available online, you can do a search and find those too.
4. Be Self Aware
Developing self awareness will help you to deal with energy vampires. It will help you to see what is going on and what is "their part" and what is yours. If you notice that most of the people in your life are energy vampires for example, you can look at your behaviour too and see what you are doing to attract and maintain these relationships. This isn't about blaming yourself but empowering yourself to make a change. For example, you may see that you are consistently engaging in people pleasing behaviours which makes it easier for energy vampires to take your energy. Being aware of what you are doing in the relationship will help you to take responsibility for your part and make more positive choices in the future.
5. Reduce Contact
At times the best thing to do with an energy vampire is to limit contact. This may help to restore the balance or realign the relationship in a healthier way. However, this doesn't always work and it may be time to let go of that friendship. Everyone is different, and you will need to listen to your intuition about the best way to approach the situation.
Are you an energy vampire?
None of us are perfect and most of us will have engaged in energy vampire behaviours at some point in our lives which is why self awareness is important. However, if you are recognising that you may be behaving as an energy vampire on a regular basis, it could be time to get things back into balance. At the heart of being an energy vampire is that you feel on some level that you need to take other peoples energy. You may feel that you don't have enough energy yourself or that you need the positive reinforcement that comes from people feeling sorry for you (for example). Start noticing if you 'need' other people to make you feel good and see if there are ways you could meet your own needs in a healthier way. How can you increase your energy and personal power so that you don't need to feed off other people's energy? Non violent communication and looking at a needs inventory is a great place to start.
Your energy and life force is precious. If you are dealing with someone who is draining your energy on a regular basis, see what you can do to make a change. Encourage the positive relationships in your life that lift you up and help you feel better about yourself. You deserve the best!
Jen Smith is a Life Coach and Writer. She has written hundreds of articles and has been featured in a variety outlets both online and in magazines. Jen has also coached hundreds of people, helping them to achieve their goals and dreams. Get your FREE "Beyond People-Pleasing" eBook and find out more about Jen at www.jenmsmith.com.