We all know what it is like to leave a social gathering feeling absolutely exhausted and like we don’t want to see another person for at least a decade! This isn’t just applicable to those of us who are more introverted either.
It is actually a key indicator that you have been spending time around emotionally draining individuals and it is time to cleanse your inner circle and fast.
However, it’s not always possible to do this as you may have to work in a close proximity to this person or they may even be a family member that you live with.
However, the key to removing yourself from an emotionally draining individual is that you must start to set strong boundaries for the sake of your own spiritual and mental wellbeing.
Whilst this may feel like it is ‘being mean’ and they may even tell you that you are ‘being cruel’, it Is imperative that you stand firm in your resolve and remember that distancing yourself from an emotionally draining person is in fact, an act of self love.
During a period of time where our health has never been so important, we cannot afford to continually put ourselves second. Whilst it is nice to be a listening ear for loved ones in their time of need, we also need to ensure that we are pouring into ourselves first and foremost.
Below, I have outlined several steps to help you to identify those people in your life who may be draining you emotionally with or without your knowledge.
Their Energy Is Intense
People who have naturally high levels of energy can be great fun at a party or a social gathering where you need someone to take the lead in certain conversations to erode the burden of awkwardness.
However, people who have high energy can also be incredibly draining as their energy automatically dominates without regard for those who may be a little more reserved in their approach to socializing.
It is also a lethal combination to be overly energized if they are coupling it with an excessively nervous energy. There is nothing wrong with confidence, but confident high energy is very different to nervous high energy.
You’ll know whether the person that you’re dealing with is overcompensating or not.
They Lack Any Form Of Self-awareness
These are the people who will just turn up at your house out of the blue without calling or alternatively, they will call your cell phone several times a day to ensure that you’re ‘ok’ or ‘still speaking to them’.
They can be incredibly overbearing and you just sense that their presence is an intrusion. They may also use blackmailing techniques to convince you to spend time with them or to get their own way in whatever capacity and their persistence will feel harassing.
Energy vampires are totally unaware of how you may be feeling and thus, this behavior will continue even if you address it with them.
They’re Incredibly Dominant And Demanding
These people will demand that you acknowledge their presence as they find it incredibly difficult to not be seen. They’re uncomfortable with being a background character and their tonality may also reflect this.
They may shout at inappropriate moments or make grand gestures, laughing way too loudly at something that is unnecessary or mocking those around you inappropriately just to gain some attention.
They’re Constantly Negative
They’re absorbed by their own negativity and will continually remind you of how awful life is for them. Whilst they may have good reason to be feeling like this and may be genuinely unhappy.
You’ll be able to tell the difference between someone who is clinically unwell and someone who is socially incapable of thinking about anything but themselves.
They’ll manage to put a negative spin on any of your good news without congratulating you and nothing that you do will be good enough to convince them that the world is an ok place.
As mentioned, energy vampires are incapable of not being seen, so as most narcissists do, they’ll need to tell self-deprecating stories or gain some kind of one-upmanship on those who surround them.
They’ll also continually make any stories that you tell about themselves and express a time when something similar has happened to them. Their experience will be described as ‘better’ or ‘worse’ respectively.
They’re Not Capable Of Being Calm
You may feel like you are walking on eggshells when spending time with an emotionally draining person as their anger is often out of control. Their naturally nervous energy is capable of sending them from 0-60 in no time at all and they are incapable of regulating those emotions that arise.
They Don’t Understand You
These people will be incredibly judgemental of your life without any understanding of your own boundaries or experiences. This is because those who are self-consumed are literally stuck within themselves and as such, they’re entirely disinterested in anything or anyone else.
They won’t take the time to genuinely understand your feelings and if they extend any advice, it will always be with a tone of cover narcissism.
You’ll be able to see that the experience of helping you is actually about showcasing themselves and they will insist on forcing their own beliefs onto you as opposed to understanding your differences.
They Make Excuses
Emotionally draining people will continually make excuses for their behavior and whilst it may be the case that they’ve experienced some horrific events, it is important to note that you can only help someone as far as they’re willing or wanting to help themselves.
You can carefully and kindly suggest that they seek medical help and counselling for their problems but if they aren’t willing to do so, then this can become draining as they’ll continually complain about the same things without taking any action to make positive changes within their life.
So how do we deal with an emotionally draining person? The first step is realizing that we all have the capacity to be emotionally burdensome. We all experience emotions and we should try to remove our judgement or own sense of one-upmanship from the situation.
Once we can establish that our own heart and mind is in the right place, then we can be self-assured enough to place the relevant boundaries in place without feeling overwhelmingly guilty.
This is often called ‘tough love’ or ‘love from afar’ as we can still care about these individuals without needing to become embroiled in their negativity.
The difference between someone who experiences intense emotions and makes proactive changes to overcome them and those who are completely unwilling to do so will be the key indicator as to whether you should distance yourself from this person.
Self care is imperative to maintaining your own physical and mental health and this should be at the forefront of all of your decision making.
We live in an era where we are continually overwhelmed by the media and images of horror and fear and thus, maintaining our own spiritual health is so important.
If you are leaving any situation where you feel completely exhausted, this will have a direct impact on your immunity and metabolism and you will be less likely to achieve your own vitality and therefore pass your own burdens onto someone else.
This is why distancing yourself from someone cannot be done from a pedestaled place.
We are all capable of acting in emotionally draining ways, however some people are hardwired to be more toxic and narcissistic than others and these people will be those who repetitively employ negative and damaging behavior without any regard for the feelings or wellbeing of those around them.
Your own emotions are your best guide, if your own anxiety levels are heightened around these individuals, you dread their company or you’re continually belittled by them, then you definitely need to cut ties entirely.
Life is far too precious to spend time with those who are not supportive of your own wellbeing, desires and dreams. Far too often, you’ll also come across those who pertain to being spiritually well (or even gurus in their chosen spiritual field) whilst being incredibly narcissistic in their intentions.
Covert narcissism is the perfect breeding ground for emotionally draining people as their insistence on ‘helping you’ is all about making themselves look a certain way.
These people are also experts in ‘love bombing’ you and then withdrawing that love and chastising you within the same hour and their gaslighting will leave you feeling drained and confused, especially if this person is well received by other people.
That is why it is crucial that you are practicing self love and have a firm grasp of your own self awareness so that you are better able to trust your instincts and make judgments from a place of truth.
You’ll instinctively know when someone is draining or belittling you, even if they seem wonderful to others, and you should cut ties accordingly. Emotional vampires aren’t always the obvious type so stay safe, build firm boundaries and foundations, and above all, stay true to yourself.