New York Times best-selling author Anita Moorjani guides you to finding, owning and nurturing your empathetic self.
If you’re highly intuitive, feel others’ emotions and understand their perspectives, you’re probably an empath, says New York Times best-selling author Anita Moorjani. Empaths are fundamentally different from most of the population, she explains, and their gifts are in dire need today, as society experiences multiple crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic, mass violence and political upheaval. Moorjani urges you to discover whether you might be an empath, and to align yourself with the higher purpose of healing humanity.
Moorjani’s best-selling Dying to Be Me chronicled her near-death experience while in a coma, during which she faced a clear choice: She could embrace death or return to life. The book sold a million copies and was translated into 45 languages. The author’s perception of non-rational realms and her profound experiences in them grant her a singular emotional, spiritual and intellectual credibility.
Empaths are people who possess high levels of intuition, feel others’ emotions and understand their perspectives. Empaths value traits that many in today’s hyper-competitive world view as weaknesses: kindness, compassion, empathy and sensitivity. Psychologist Elaine Aron characterizes people who feel the world strongly as “highly sensitive persons” (HSPs). HSPs tend to be intuitive, and they actually absorb people’s emotions.
This book is about expansion, liberation and connection with your own divinity. It’s about speaking out, honoring yourself and loving yourself.Anita Moorjani
You may be an empath if you fear disappointing people; if people easily manipulate you; if you are creative and dislike routine; if you feel at home in nature and alienated in society; if you recharge your energy alone; and if the world often overwhelms you.
Empathy as a Strength
Sometimes, empaths develop coping mechanisms called “layers”: tough facades to mask their vulnerabilites. These layers can lead to unhealthy, escapist behaviors, such as overeating, consuming drugs or alcohol, or presenting yourself as detached and aloof.
Our downfall, or our curse, is our inability to distinguish other people’s needs and emotions from our own, and our need to make everyone else feel good before we can feel good ourselves.Anita Moorjani
Don’t try to escape the world; open yourself up to it. Tell yourself: “I see my sensitivity as my strength and superpower.”
Moorjani advises that, to better embrace your sensitive nature and harness your strengths, you should spend 24 hours each week disconnected from electronic devices. Practice trusting in and relying upon your intuition. Embrace deep breathing and meditations, chakra visualizations, or time in nature to ground yourself and manage your energy levels and mood. Learn to not react – gentleness serves you best.
The author takes a counterintuitive position regarding ego, asserting that empaths need to strengthen their egos to avoid prioritizing others’ needs above their own. Modern definitions of the ego describe it as the source of your self-esteem. Use your ego to expand your empathy and awareness. A healthy ego helps you love yourself, take care of your needs and believe yourself worthy of living a successful, authentic life.
For empaths, especially, the ego is not – as we’re so often taught – the nemesis to the true self. It’s the key.Anita Moorjani
Empaths with weak egos turn into doormats when showing unconditional love, because they allow people to take advantage of them. Set boundaries to protect yourself.
Your thoughts effect how your brain controls your physiology. Absorbing fear-based, stress-inducing thoughts can generate poor health.
Optimize what Eastern spiritual healing traditions refer to as your “shakti” or “prana” – your “life force energy” – by engaging in activities and practices that energize you. Connect with your body through meditation, and ask, “What or who depletes my energy?” and “What uplifts me?” Taking care of yourself is an obligation to yourself and your community.
Empaths tend to serve others without proper compensation.If you avoid managing your finances, the presence or lack of money will rule your life. Recognize the value of your work and overcome guilt about gaining wealth and abundance.
You must meet your own needs, so your light doesn’t dim, so you can share it with others.Anita Moorjani
To identify a career niche that aligns with your life purpose, choose activities you engage in regularly without experiencing burnout. Overcome self-limiting beliefs; tell yourself there is no limit to what you’re capable of earning. Shift your mind-set to embrace abundance and focus on living a purposeful, joyful life.
Empathic women often hold back from expressing themselves authentically due to fears of experiencing social disapproval for failing to meet unfair gendered expectations.
I realized that the roles we play, the roles we stick to – the gender roles that have been taught to us – are simply cultural roles.Anita Moorjani
When you feel spiritually connected to universal consciousness, gender emerges as a cultural construction tethered to biology. For example, many people expect women to engage in self-sacrificing behaviors, which can impede their self-love or ability to claim their power. Learn to love your own form of gender expression; break free of negative beliefs you internalized that may stand in the way of your empowerment. Moorjani counsels you to fearlessly embrace your transformative journey toward becoming your most authentic self.
The author insists you must learn to love yourself in your entirety, which means observing both your negative and positive thoughts without judging them or allowing them to trigger fears.
Living fearlessly means being who you are fearlessly, and opening yourself up to possibilities you never imagined without self-imposed limits to contain you.Anita Moorjani
Cultivate joy in your life and in the lives of others. Living an authentic, connected life as an empath means joining a collective force of people working toward societal healing.
Moorjani writes with all the compassion and empathy she encourages you to develop. Her overarching theme – and directive – is the necessity of everyone getting in touch with, honoring and defending their sensitivity. Moorjani’s titular focus on empaths serves as a gateway to her more broad-based, actionable advice to all readers regarding the need to develop, heed and protect their sensing aspects. She writes ably about emotion and proves articulate and heartfelt, without positioning herself as more-sensitive-than-thou. As with Brené Brown, Moorjani is a rare, valuable author, one who addresses profound emotion from an aware, intellectual perspective, with no loss of humanity.
Anita Moorjani also wrote the New York Times best-sellers What If This Is Heaven? and Dying to Be Me. She co-authored Love: A Story About Who You Truly Are with Angie DeMuro.