Everyone knows vampires, those scary creatures who have sharp teeth, love blood and hate garlic. They tend to hang out in Transylvania/storybooks, and in general aren’t a real big threat to your average, everyday person.
Or are they?
Blood-sucking vampires aren’t the only vampires out there. Vampires also come in the form of “energy vampires,” which aren’t scary creatures in storybooks. No, they are actually every-day humans like you or me, but they suck the energy out of you. They’re dangerous and can leave you just as lifeless as the bloodsuckers if you aren’t careful.
Don’t have any fear! You can become your own version of Van Helsing and slay those energy vampires (figuratively).
First, you have to identify the characteristics of an energy vampire. Here are some common traits shared by those energy-suckers. Each of these points is a form of energy-sucking, and if someone has more than one of these habits they are definitely someone you should caution yourself against.
- You feel emotionally drained or tired when you’re with them or when you’ve just left their company.
- You feel “on edge” when they’re around.
- When something is going right in your life they don’t celebrate with you, but when something goes right in their life they expect you to be excited for them.
- They’re instigators and they’ll stir up drama just for the sake of winning people to “their side.”
- Energy vampires act selfishly and will use guilt and manipulation as means to get their way.
- They love sympathy and will often complain and play the victim to get some.
- They don’t take responsibility for their life or personal situation, and believe they’ve simply been dealt a bad hand. They expect improvement will come from the outside, and they wait around for change to come to them rather than make it for themselves.
- Energy vampires believe their way of living is the right way, and think of others as “less than” if they make different choices or live according to different standards. Energy vampires will let you or other people know they disapprove of your choices, even when it’s clearly none of their business.
- They’re needy and constantly need reassurance.
Does this sound like someone you know? If so, I’m terribly sorry. I’m pretty sure everyone has energy vampires in their lives, but knowing that doesn’t always make dealing with them easier. They are especially difficult when they take the form of a good friend, a partner, a parent or a boss.
The good news is that there are ways to deal with them. First and foremost, you must identify the vampires and decide not to put up with their behavior anymore. From there you can use the following techniques to protect yourself and your energy.
- Breathe and let it go. This is the quickest solution and can be applied the moment an energy vampire starts sucking up your precious energy. Realize their behavior is a reflection of them, not of you, and again- breathe.
- Imagine a protective aura around you. I imagine mine is pink, but you can imagine whatever color you’d like. The point is to imagine a physical barrier of protective energy, and when the energy-sucker’s words try to get through, imagine them evaporating or turning into a pleasant breeze or warm rays of sun. Whatever you do, imagining that barrier is like putting up a mental wall between you and the vampire.
- Speak up for yourself. Tell the sucker how their behavior makes you feel. A vampire’s reaction is unpredictable, but no matter what happens you’ll be bringing awareness to how you feel.
- When they start complaining, say “it must be hard to feel that way.” This simple phrase informs the vampire that you don’t share their point of view but from a sympathetic standpoint. From there you can move onto another topic. If the vampire wants to continue discussing their problems, simply repeat yourself, and add that you don’t share the same perspective and you’d like to discuss something else.
- If all else fails, reevaluate your relationship. There are a million reasons why someone could be an energy vampire, and not all of them are bad. The person could just be going through a rough time. However, their circumstance doesn’t warrant you giving up your energy. Put up boundaries, limit your contact and distance yourself if it becomes too much. It doesn’t have to be forever, just until the energy vampire turns back into someone you can be around- just remember it is not your responsibility to make them change. They have to do it themselves.
Do you have any more tips for dealing with this type of person? Add them below!