Empathy, like any other personality trait, is different in every person. Some people are very empathic, which means that they can tell what others are feeling and can even identify with the other person. People, who do not have any empathy for them are the opposite – they fail to put themselves in other person’s shoes, and they only see their point of view.
Being an empath is a gift and being around an empathic person is an even bigger fortune. Empaths make great friends because of their ability to read people and understand where they are coming from. That also means empathy have an extreme compassion for others and it might even be hard from time to time to live all the emotions through that others will give to you.
But how do some people have more empathic powers than others? In the book “The Empath’s Survival Guide,” the author Judith Orloff discuss the scientific explanations of empathic people. Here are the 5 points she reveals about empaths:
1. THE MIRROR NEURON SYSTEM
There is a specialized group of brain cells that are responsible for compassion and feeling sorry for others. These cells make it possible to experience and understand what the other person is going through – their joy, pain and all the other emotions. Empaths have hyper-responsive mirror neutrons, and because of that, they can resonate well with people’s feelings.
In contrast to empathic people, psychopaths, sociopaths, and narcissists do not have these kinds of brain cells, and because of that they only think about themselves and cannot understand what the other person is going through. These people are not capable of unconditional love, and they will always put their needs and comfort first.
2. ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS
The second finding is based on electromagnetic fields, which are generated by the brain and the heart. These areas transmit information about people’s thoughts and emotions. Empaths are extra sensitive to these fields and might even get overwhelmed by others’ emotions. Empathic people are also affected by the universe’s magnetic fields and their changes. They are more connected to the Earth than non-empathic people.
3. EMOTIONAL CONTAGION
Emotional contagion means that people can spread energy and emotions. If someone is stressed out, it might affect compassionate people around him/her as well. Or when someone is crying, it makes empaths around him/her sad as well. It was stated in a New York Times article, that it is essential that couples have synchronized moods. Otherwise, it will hurt the relationship. So what is the lesson here? The happier and confident people are around you, the happier you will be. So choose the people you interact with carefully.
4. INCREASED DOPAMINE SENSITIVITY
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that enhances the amount of pleasure we feel. A study showed that introverted empaths tend to have higher sensitivity towards dopamine than extroverts, which means they need less of it to feel happy. This explains why shy empaths enjoy spending time alone, meditation and reading. They need less external stimulation like parties and social gatherings to feel comfortable. In opposite, extraverts need to communicate and socialize to get that dopamine rush.
Synesthesia is a neurological condition, in which two different kinds of senses are paired in the brain. For example, you hear music when you see colors, or you can smell words. There is also a “mirror-touch synesthesia,” which means that one can feel the emotions and the energy from others’ like their own
Empathy is one of the most important traits. It is important to understand and consider others. Only this way can all humans live on the Earth peacefully. One should always think how his/her are going to affect others. Also, it is important not to judge, but try to understand what others are feeling and going through. When you have an empath in your life, you should hold on to him/her, because it is hard to find people, who will understand you completely.