In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Are animals drawn to Empaths? We will explain the connection between empaths and animals, and describe 11 unique features of empaths.
Are animals drawn to Empaths?
Yes, animals may be drawn to empaths. Empaths are highly sensitive, they understand emotions and those around them on a different level. It is no wonder that animals are drawn to empaths. Animals can differentiate between kind people and those who represent a danger for themselves or their owners.
There is some evidence that animals may be drawn to empaths. An experiment has shown that animals can sense who is good to their owners and who is not and act accordingly.
A study published in Science Direct reveals that animals can tell a good person from a not so good one. They can even get to really feel when someone is not nice and even when that person is more unpleasant, even if it is not to them specifically. Although many associated this behavior with cats more than dogs, this research has shown that it is not.
The study was based on an experiment with dog owners. These received a container that they had to open. Not being able to do it alone, they asked a person for help, in this case, one of the researchers, and they responded in three different ways: they helped the dog owner, they remained standing passively or they said no to help. And always with the dogs in front. In the next step, the researchers asked for help interacting with the dogs by offering them a deal.
And animals were much more receptive to people who had helped their owners or at least behaved passively, than to those who turned their backs on them and did not help them. This means that animals do not always act out of their own interest since, in this case, people who did not help their owners did not behave either well or badly with the dogs. It also means that animals are more drawn to people who are willing to help (empaths).
The study shows that the dogs simply felt that they were not being good to their owners and, therefore, they did not want to have anything to do with them either.
Do empaths have a stronger connection to the animal kingdom?
Empathy is an art, an exceptional ability genetically programmed in our brain with which to tune into the feelings and intentions of others. However, and here comes the problem, not everyone manages to “turn on” this flashlight that illuminates the process of building the most solid and enriching relationships.
There is no doubt that many people are skilled at emotionally and cognitively empathizing with others (they feel and understand what is happening), however, instead of mediating channeling and proper management of that discomfort, they intensify it.
The person skilled in empathy, therefore, is the one capable of putting themselves in the shoes of others, knowing at all times how to accompany this process without damaging and without acting as a mirror where the pain is amplified.
People that empathize with animals feel deeply connected to them; they know what they need and can feel their thoughts and emotions. Usually, these people end up owning more animals or even working as veterinarians. Many will feel the need to volunteer at shelters or animal welfare organizations.
People who are empathetic to plants are very attentive to plants – they feel, know, and understand what they need. I can hear the thoughts of plants and they will be meticulous and intuitive in nature.
They are also deeply familiar with the spirit of each plant and can easily build a relationship with it.
11 signs that you are an Empath
Empaths cultivate their curiosity for strangers – Empathic people are curious about the unknown. Anytime and anywhere is good for making new connections, just out of curiosity. They are endowed with an insatiable curiosity for strangers.
Curiosity broadens our empathy when we speak to people outside of our usual social circle. Curiosity is good for us, too – happiness guru Martin Seligman identifies it as a strength of character that can enhance life satisfaction.
Cultivating curiosity requires more than just having a short talk about the weather. Crucially, an empathic individual tries to understand the world inside the other person’s head. Every day we are faced with strangers, such as the heavily tattooed woman who delivers her mail or the new employee who always eats lunch alone. How about setting the challenge of talking to a stranger every week? The only attitude required is courage.
Empaths get out of your usual environment – Take trips, especially to new places and cultures. This gives you a better appreciation for others. Go on challenging experiences that take you out of your comfort zone. Learn a new skill, for example, as a musical instrument, hobby, or foreign language.
Develop a new professional competence. Doing things like this will increase your resilience and humility. The latter is a key element of empathy.
Empaths request feedback – Ask for feedback on your relationship skills (for example, listening) with family friends and colleagues, and then check in regularly with them to see how you are evolving.
Explore the heart, not just the head – Read books that explore personal relationships and emotions. This has been shown to improve the empathy of young doctors, for example.
Walk in the shoes of others – Talk to others about your problems, concerns, dilemmas, challenges, and try to understand how they perceive the experiences you have shared.
Examine your prejudices – We all hide (and sometimes not so hidden) some prejudices that interfere with our ability to listen and sympathize. These often focus on visible factors like age, race, and gender. Don’t think you have any prejudice? Think again!
Cultivate your sense of curiosity – What can you learn from a very young “inexperienced” colleague? What can you learn from a customer that you see as “correct”? Curious people ask a lot of questions, leading them to develop a better understanding of the people around them.
To be an empathetic person ask better questions – Always try to ask three or four open-ended, even provocative questions for every conversation you have with clients or colleagues.
Experience someone else’s life- So, do you think climbing or hang gliding are extreme sports? Therefore, you must try experiential empathy, the most challenging and potentially rewarding of all. Some people expand their empathy by gaining direct experience in other people’s lives.
Listen carefully and be open – The only way to be present for what is really going on within your feelings is to master the art of radical listening. Whether you are a troublesome friend or a family member suffering from some kind of behavior, highly empathetic people will always be attentive to what others are saying, doing their best to understand their needs and emotional state.
Still, listening is never enough. Sometimes becoming vulnerable becomes indispensable. Dropping the masks and revealing feelings for someone who is injured can become a strong bond of empathy. Empathy is a two-way street that, at best, relies on mutual understanding, sharing beliefs and important experiences.
Inspire Mass Action and Social Change – Normally, we assume that empathy occurs at the level of individuals, but empathic people understand that empathy can also be a mass phenomenon that produces fundamental social change. Empathy will likely flourish on a collective scale if seeds are planted in our children.
A big challenge is figuring out how social media can harness the power of empathy to create massive political action, spreading not just information but an empathic connection.
Are Empaths real?
Yes, empaths are real. Empathy is the ability to understand and feel a person’s emotions and thoughts as if we were living them.
First of all, an empathetic person can easily identify the emotions of others and here I am obviously referring to latent emotions, which are not expressed. Anyone can get an idea of how a crying man feels, but few manage to identify the fact that a person suffers when that person does his best not to show it, hiding behind a mask. Empathetic people see beyond masks, easily.
But they do more than automatically identify how the people around them feel; they also have the ability to imagine exactly how that person should feel even if they have never been through exactly the same situation.
Empathy also helps people to read body language more easily or to see those sparkles in people’s eyes. Because of this understanding of human nature that they are capable of, empathetic people are usually sympathetic to those around them and show compassion.
Can anyone be an Empath?
The answer is… NO! To “see and feel” like other people we need a very strong reason to be able to imagine their past, experiences, and values.
In order to “appreciate others as human beings” (without negative judgment) we need self-control, not to jump to conclusions, to understand that their motivations are different from ours.
In order to “understand their feelings,” we need to have experienced at least something similar. It is very difficult or even impossible to understand how a depressed person feels – an extreme and unique feeling.
In order to “communicate understanding”, that we are with them and that we understand and feel what we are going through, we need both the rational and the emotional side.
A person who only feels emotions but cannot see through the person’s past cannot be a good empath. Likewise, a person who is too rational, who understands the person’s past and can provide feedback, but only “like a book”, standard, without bending on the person’s feelings, cannot be considered an effective empathy.
To be empathetic, we need both the emotional and the rational side.
The bottom line
Empaths are people who take time out of the hustle and bustle of the day, who dedicate their lives to their loved ones. Because they make this difficult and special, they deserve it and will have a special life.
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FAQ on Are animals drawn to Empaths?
Is an empath a real thing?
Yes, an empath is a real thing, it does exist. An empathetic person can easily identify the emotions of others and here I am obviously referring to latent emotions, which are not expressed. Anyone can get an idea of how a crying man feels, but few manage to identify the fact that a person suffers when that person does his best not to show it, hiding behind a mask.
Can Empaths be toxic?
Empaths are not toxic to other people, but being an empath can have its drawbacks. Most people do not realize, but Empaths are consumed faster than ordinary people and often function as a sponge: they absorb from the emotions of others what helps them to understand and put themselves in the place of those people but when the interaction is over.
What is an extreme empath?
An extreme empath is someone who can feel other people’s emotions in their own body. As they were their own.
What percentage of the population are Empaths?
Only 2 percent of the population are empaths. Empathy means looking through the person’s universe, appreciating it without judging it, feeling its feelings, and communicating understanding. It is as difficult as it is satisfying, it is the basis of all successful relationships.