There are many people out there who literally feed off the energies of those around them, attaching to a person and attempting to emotionally suck them dry. Then, the cycle continues, as the “energy vampire” survives off of other people’s emotions. An energy vampire refers to a toxic person who leaves you feeling depleted and emotionally exhausted. Being around them may make you feel anxious, agitated, uneasy, and even doubtful of your own capabilities. Now you know why happy, vibrant people can sometimes attract those with self-serving motives. People who try to steal others’ energy live from such a low vibrational state that they must turn to people with high energy levels to survive. When the person supplying the energy does come into the full realization of the situation at hand, they will usually either ignore the person or let them go. Energy thieves can be very likable, talented, and even have very attractive personality traits.
Albert Bernstein sums it up this way: “You like them; you trust them; you expect more from them than you do other people. You expect more, you get less, and in the end, you get taken.”
Learning how to identify an energy vampire is an important first step in dealing with them. When someone habitually displays more than one of the following traits for an extended period of time, they are an energy thief. (But if someone only periodically does one or two, they are not.) Here are 8 signs that you may have someone tapping into your emotional energy and zapping your joy – without your permission:
1. They Make Problems Bigger Than They Really Are
People who try to steal your energy will often overreact to the smaller, less important things in life, simply to feed off of the strong emotional response that comes with their reaction. If the waitress at the restaurant made a mistake with the order, they are the type that will act as if their day is ruined.
Instead of letting them overreact, be sure to make the optimistic view apparent and remind them that this whole human experience naturally comes with imperfections and disorders, because life is simply an experiment. We all came here to learn and grow, and that involves failing, making mistakes, and adjusting to whatever happens.
2. They Believe Their Needs are Far More Important Than Yours
It’s not that the emotional thief does not care about the person from whom he is stealing, it’s just that he cares a whole lot more about himself. His wants and desires come before you, the mission of the organization, and sometimes even his own family.
3. Someone Trying to Steal your Energy Will Try to Drag You Down to Their Level
For these types of people, often called “poor me” types, you could easily change the subject or offer a few positive words about their relationship. This type of energy vampire usually doesn’t have underlying intentions, but may just need some assistance in getting back on a path toward uplifting their own energy. We all need help from time to time, so don’t automatically dismiss those who exude negative vibes. They may have just had a bad day, and need someone to talk to. As long as you can reach within and easily access your own positivity, this person’s energy should not affect you psychically.
4. They are Never Satisfied
Emotional thieves are hungry – all the time. They always want something from you. More money. More authority. Special treatment. They are always hungry and have an insatiable appetite.
5. They Seldom Show Empathy
You just worked 60 hours? Your kid is very sick? You are down a few team members? It doesn’t matter to a thief. They are not interested in your life and needs. They only want to feed off of you, not identify with you.
6. They Try to Make You Focus on the Negative
Someone who is trying to steal your energy not only wants to fuel themselves with it, but they also want to make sure that you don’t have any leftovers for yourself. They will consistently try to make you see the sour side of things, fill your head with doubt, and make you feel like you aren’t good enough to receive the positive energy you deserve.
7. They Greet You in a Great Mood, then Flip the Switch
Sometimes when coming into contact with someone who is trying to steal your energy, they’ll initially greet you with joy, as if you’re the person they’ve been waiting to see all day. Once they know they have you in their territory, they flip the switch and leave you blanketed by the overwhelming amounts of negative energy they give off. It can feel suffocating, but you can always find a way to keep them from getting away with stealing your energy.
Simply smiling at someone who is overwhelmingly negative can actually help flood them with positive energy. Think of how you feel when a stranger smiles at you on the street or in the grocery store; you instantly feel happier, right? Well, it works in the same fashion when you pass the smile on to others; ripples create waves, so make sure to keep the positive energy flowing by giving away your own happiness to others!
8. They Won’t Take “No” For An Answer
I recently watched a parent tell a child “no” to the little girls’ never-ending requests. As annoying as it is, parents expect this behavior from children. But when you see it in adults, it can be aggravating and draining. This is what emotional thieves do. They keep coming at you in order to wear you down.
As a sensitive person, you are genetically wired to be more attuned to other people’s emotions. This is a tremendous strength – making you warm and kind-hearted – but also makes you susceptible to people-pleasing and overly accommodating an energy vampire’s many needs and demands, to the detriment of your own health and productivity.
These Additional Steps Can Keep Your Energy Safe:
- Be kind, but short. Make sure you are clearly communicating. For instance, say, “I don’t feel comfortable talking about so-and-so” or “This sounds important to you, but can we focus on A, B, and C?”. Compliment your words with strong non-verbal signals too.
- Recognize that their behavior is an attempt to meet a need. It’s generally a desire to feel important and valued. The person may lack the self-awareness to meet their need more appropriately. Knowing this makes it much easier to remain emotionally detached.
- Answering every single question to get them to leave you alone will only make the problem worse. Curb the need to “fix” the situation each time they come running to you with a supposed “emergency”.
DON’T BE AN ENERGY VAMPIRE YOURSELF
Be mindful of the energy you are giving out as well. Does it reflect your values and your best self? Be part of the solution, not the problem.
Energy vampires don’t have to drain you or those around you. By taking these steps you’ll find interactions are easier, freeing up your time, and mental and emotional energy. Most importantly, with healthier boundaries, you can bring your best self to the table. Any time someone is trying to steal your energy by making you focus on the negative, immediately do something else to take your mind off of it. This shows great accountability and self-respect for your own well-being, and clearly tells the person trying to drain you that their presence is no longer welcome.
Article Credit: https://www.centerconsulting.org/blog/energy-thieves-8-warning-signs-that-people-are-stealing-your-emotional-energy https://www.powerofpositivity.com/5-signs-someone-is-trying-to-steal-your-energy/ https://melodywilding.com/3-types-of-energy-vampires-and-how-to-deal-with-them/