3 Common Habits of Energy Vampires
How to know if you're being held hostage by an energy sucker
There is nothing more empowering than doing the work for yourself. Maybe you've been going to therapy, reading books, practicing self-care, or just trying to be a more positive person. Perhaps you are naturally a more optimistic person or just don't like being involved with any drama. Whatever your life situation is, there will always be vampires lurking. I want to call these energy vampires. Have you ever been around that one person who, no matter what, just sucks the energy out of you? By the time you are done talking to them, you are exhausted emotionally and physically. If so, you may be dealing with an energy vampire.
Energy vampires are chronic complainers, usually involved in drama, and lack boundaries. Energy vampires tend to take others hostage, as they always make the conversations about themselves and things going wrong. They usually like to vent and unload their problems onto others but will not follow any advice. There will always be an excuse for every suggestion that you give them. Energy vampires often feel victims of something and blame other people for their problems. They accept no responsibility. Energy vampires are also very pessimistic most of the time. They will think of the worst-case scenario even if it makes no sense. They will focus on the bad parts of things. The energy vampires can be very argumentative and overly critical of people, places, or even things.
This is often referred to as negativity bias, a completely natural human response. According to Psycom.net, because of a "multitude of reasons including biology and chemistry, we're more likely to register an insult or negative event than we are to take in a compliment or recall details of a happy event. The negativity bias can even cause you to dwell on something negative even if something positive is equally or more present." As a result, we are more likely to remember a negative experience than a positive one.
The people that energy vampires usually "attack" are sensitive, caring, and typically like to help others. They may dismiss your problems and feel that their problems are worse. When we deal with energy vampires, we are exhausted, tired, and our energy is low/negative. It can become very stressful for the receiving end because it feels like you're walking on eggshells with the vampire. You're left wondering what the next thing will be that they complain about. It can be very stressful to manage, especially if the energy vampire is a close friend, loved one, or partner. We feel a sense of responsibility toward fixing their problems. We feel like we have to listen but are often left feeling hopeless and in our own negativity.
So how do we deal with energy vampires? In my experience, telling others to be positive does not work. Sometimes it feels frustrating to be dealing with someone so negative, and we can feel like we just want to tell them to be positive, but that doesn't work. Energy vampires are usually very set in their ways. Often, this type of outlook in life is passed down from their parents. I've dealt with energy vampires before, and if you try to challenge their beliefs, you will end up becoming very frustrated because they will try to find every justification for their thoughts. I think it's important to set boundaries for our own sake and energy. This can be done by limiting the number of interactions with the energy vampire. It's ok to be honest and say no to the conversation or "I'm tired today." We can avoid giving advice when they vent to us. Set boundaries with your time and physical presence. You can decline invitations to places. Lastly, if need be, maybe the best option is to cut them out of your life. Cut down the communication with this individual or reduce contact.
What has your experience been with an energy vampire? Are you or have you been an energy vampire? Let me know...