Over the weekend, I learned an important lesson. It is probably more accurate to say I relearned the lesson since I forgot it so completely it took me a while to remember that I knew it.
Have you ever spent time with someone and very shortly after meeting them, you begin to feel tired? I don’t mean tired like you didn’t get enough sleep, but totally mentally drained tired.
On Saturday, I went out with some friends and while we were in the car, I began to feel tired, so tired I could barely function. The one friend is someone I see often, but the other was someone I don’t spend as much time with, or at least I do not spend time with in close quarters, like the car. We got out of the car and I felt less tired. We got back in the car, and again, I was totally sapped. We stopped to eat, and I was better, but still drained.
When my brain finally cleared, I was able to remember a similar experience in seminary. Another student in my class would sit next to me every day. He would sit down and within a very short time, I felt that same drained feeling. He sat next to me every day. There were several occasions on which I had to leave class to get a soda and some M&Ms to make it through class. I had absolutely no idea why I felt so tired.
In another class, we had a rabbi as a guest speaker. She talked about feeling drained in certain situations and talked about raising our energy shields before we entered potentially draining situations. She showed us the most awesome exercise to raise our shields and not allow someone else not to just feed off our energy.
The man in my class enjoyed siting next to me, I believe, because my energy was open and available. He fed off of it. He may not have even known he was doing it. I think the same thing happened with my friend this weekend. My energy was available and open and the other person needed a recharge.
I do not think it was the intention of either person to feed on my energy. I do not blame either of them for their actions.
As a survivor of abuse, my self-defense mechanisms were practically destroyed. I was not supposed to defend myself. I was supposed to be at my father’s mercy.
My boundaries were non-existent and my sense of self was completely depleted. I now know it is ok for me to protect myself. My energy is not a feeding source for others. I am not at their mercy.
Before I interact with my friend again, especially in a small area, I will use the exercise I learned from the rabbi. I will also remember the lesson I learned and not be the victim of an energy vampire.
How does one raise his or her energy shield? This is what I do. I place my left hand in front of my abdomen, my core, where energy is stored. Then I move my hand in a clockwise motion slowly up my torso until I reach the back of my head. Then I straighten my arm and while putting my arm back at rest, I keep my hand at arm’s length away from my body. I don’t want to lower the energy I just raised. I usually do this in a mirror and try to think about raising my energy to protect me.
Have you ever experienced something like this? I would love to hear about your experience and hear what methods you have learned to keep yourself from being drained of all energy.