Have you heard of an ‘energy vampire’?
It’s a term that is used to describe those items around the house that when left plugged in quietly suck up a lot of energy. You recognise energy vampires because they feel warm when you touch them.
Energy vampires also exist among humans. They’re kind of the opposite in that they don’t really make you feel warm when you touch them.
Energy Vampires Drain All of Us
They are people who drain others (introverts AND extroverts alike) of energy at a faster rate than normal. You might recognise them through their speed to vocalise yet another problem they have to complain about, the guilt and blame they cast out on others, the perpetual negativity, and sureness and stubborness of their opinion being 100% factual.
You recognise them by the feeling you experience after having been around them. You become drained.
Before you know it you may also quickly become their crutch. The person they feel able to lean on and unload whenever they need to. And it can be completely exhausting.
Energy Vampires are people who will happily and graciously provide a problem for every solution.
Generally speaking energy vampires can zap everyone of their energy and the impact of their presence in a community can be destructive.
They can bring you to your knees and it’s important to look out for them to cope and deal with them accordingly.
What do we do when we encounter an energy vampire who always leaves us feeling drained? How do we cope and guard against the affect of their energy-taking mentalities.
You can’t change their mind
Energy Vampires are often deeply entrenched in their negative and cynical approach to life. Their problems are the fault of other people and the world. If you were to suggest otherwise or offer any productive advice it gets dismissed as unrealistic and pointless. They don’t see their own responsibility or how they maybe contribute to their problems.
Don’t get caught up in the drama and cynicism. This is one of the bridges that drains you of energy while actually creating and sustaining their energy.
As an introvert and highly sensitive person I get my energy from being creative, making things, thinking about ideas, spending time alone. The energy vampires leech our energy by extinguishing positive sparks and constantly expressing their problems, expecting everyone to show up at their regular pity parties.
All relationships are a trade of energy. Whether introverted or extroverted, people can lift or drain us of energy. Some people leave you feeling uplifted while others may make you feel negative, fearful, guilty, bored, and downtrodden.
Don’t give them permission to leech your energy. Remind yourself why your relationship matters (if indeed it does), identify cues for negativity – what sets them off?
Steer conversation away from these things or even just tell them that you don’t want to discuss certain subjects.
It’s important to identify those situations in which you’ve had your energy sucked away. Reflect and de-brief with yourself afterwards so you can put it into perspective and do something that brings your energy back.
If you are left harbouring bitterness or resentment about something that has been said, let go of it and remind yourself who it was that said it.
Find Collective Solutions
Find out if you’re the only one who struggles with a particular person in your community. It’s likely not to be the case but if there are others who are better at coping with them then it’s worth seeing if they can step in for a bit if it’s a relationship that can’t easily be ended.
It would be easy to simply say ‘cut them out’ but it’s very rarely that easy. I know energy vampires with whom I empathise wholehearedly. They have suffered immensely through their lives and I wouldn’t dream of abandoning them.
But for these people there may need to be difficult conversations and plans put in place. This is not your responsiblity alone. Work with people around you. Share it.
Surround Yourself with People who Do Energise You.
Encourage your fountains.
Who are the people that actually energise you? What are the activities that make you feel alive?
Find more of that. Demonstrate a positive attitude and celebrate successes.
In other words model the kind of mindset that you long to see in the energy vampire. It’s important to gently destroy the wider impact of energy vampires on the culture and community around you because it can take an insidious effect on collective morale before anyone has realised.
You can choose who you give your time to and thus spend your energy in wise ways.
Knowing the trade of energy that is going to happen with different people is a good place to start. It means you can be on guard against allowing the energy vampires access to as much as they might like.
Starve the vampire in them and you never know, in time things may change. Just don’t expect too much too soon.
Over to You
Question: Have you encountered an energy vampire? What was your response? Please leave your answer in the comments below.