Has anyone else on the spiritual path been finding it harder to be around crowds of people? This seems like a common symptom of spiritual awakening, but I wonder just how many people are trying to cope with this challenge right now.
I began to notice almost exactly a year ago that being around a lot of strangers drove me a tad crazy. I was dealing with ego loss at the time, so I thought I might have been projecting my own discomfort and problems onto others. Now, I’m beginning to suspect that it was more than my own crap that was causing all of the discomfort.
I would be stuck in traffic at a stoplight and feel like I was picking up on everyone’s insecurities and their anxieties. Sometimes, it felt slightly suffocating. Other times, I felt a sense of sadness thinking about how this is not the way people should be feeling on a daily basis. On one of my worst days, I was alone on the beach surrounded by lots of families and tourists who were on vacation. Instead of sensing joy or peace, it seemed like many of the people were grouchy and miserable. The energy got so intense that I felt like either pulling my hair out or grabbing all my belongings and running a mile away from those people.
I frequently isolate myself from crowded areas, mostly because I’ve never been a fan of crowds. Prior to awakening, crowds were more like a nuisance and an invasion of my personal space. I could go to a bar with a friend and not be bothered by all the people, but I craved a lot of personal space in most environments, especially when I was out in nature. It was my time to enjoy some silence and reflect.
Lately, I’ve begun to notice again that crowds can stir up strange emotions in me. Recently I walked into a busy restaurant with my boyfriend to grab some lunch, and I immediately felt uneasy and suffocated while standing in line. There was loud music and a high amount of energy in the room. I tried to tune out everything, but I felt like I was becoming emotional and needed to leave to avoid the awkwardness of ordering food with tears streaming down my face. I told my boyfriend that I needed to step out, so he followed me. My eyes were filling with tears before I could even sit down on the bench outside. I was as confused as my boyfriend was as to why I started to cry. I could not explain it, but I felt so much better once I got out of that environment. The old me might have felt annoyed by all the noise and people, but I would have tolerated it just fine.
I’m finding that my more awakened self has become overly sensitive to such a degree that I can no longer maintain my inner peace everywhere I go.
The environment I’m in makes a huge difference. Some outdoor areas that attract people don’t cause any discomfort. Others make me want to flee the minute I arrive. It is the same with indoor spaces, like retail stores. Some are fine, even if they are a little crowded. Others stir up all sorts of emotions that I can’t explain. I think it’s likely that I’m picking up on people’s emotional baggage and nasty energy when I get in one of those environments. I guess it would be difficult to prove that is what is happening, but my boyfriend isn’t fond of crowds, either, and he usually agrees with me when I comment on whether or not a particular crowd triggered uncomfortable feelings.
My best analogy that describes how I feel when I enter one of those environments that triggers uncomfortable feelings is the icky, yucky feeling you would get if you stepped into a dirty lake or swimming pool. You’re immediately ready to get the hell out because it feels so nasty. Surely there are others who can relate to what I’m describing here.
Lately, I feel so turned off by crowds that I am considering the idea of moving somewhere with fewer people. I don’t even live in a major city, but I’m no longer enjoying the energy of this place.
I have become friends with a woman who has been experiencing issues extremely similar to mine. She is very familiar with chronic fatigue and the inability to be among a crowd of people. It makes me wonder if we are being affected by empath sickness since we are both so deeply affected by the pain and suffering of the world and the city where we live. She is greatly affected by the destruction of trees and the environment, while I feel so much frustration and sadness about the deterioration of human health and our food supply, along with the control systems being exerted onto us.
Whatever issue bothers you the most, it is far from easy to carry the burden of knowing what is happening and caring so much about it while so many others prefer to stay in denial of our problems. This is from an article titled “Physical Symptoms of an Empath“:
The biggest problem is that the Earth is sick and in pain, and under a constant barrage of attack and torture. Those who harm the Earth do not feel her pain, but people with empathic ability bear the burden of being overly sensitive in an insensitive world, and therefore have a hard time living here. You cannot cut off from your feelings, nor can you armor yourself against them, because numbness is not healing and does not make things better (even if it seems blissfully tempting). The physical symptoms of an empath that you experience are a reminder that you are a healer, and that empathy is a healing gift. Receive the divine healing light from your Source above, let it nourish you, fill you and protect you, then send it out to all who need it, including the Earth. And remember to send love and gratitude to the Earth with each and every breath, because she needs it desperately.
Has anyone with sensitivities to energy and suffering found a solution? I don’t think isolation or fleeing from uncomfortable spaces should become a long-term coping strategy, and I don’t like the typical advice people offer about creating a shield around yourself to block energy. I don’t want to absorb yucky energies so that I become overwhelmed by them, but something tells me that trying to block out and numb myself to everything isn’t the best approach. The way I see it, I am sensitive for a reason. Maybe I will try the strategy mentioned in the article the next time I find myself in an uncomfortable environment. If anyone has found a useful tool or strategy to manage energy sensitivity, please share your tips in the comments section! Also, let me know how long this has been an issue for you if you can relate to my experiences.