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Balanced Friendships

Balanced Friendships as an Empath

Do you know what balanced friendships look like?

 

As empaths we are naturally caring and giving, always wanting the best for those around us and of course we can feel when that is not the case.  We tend to leap into action doing what we can to help and support that person to feel better, because as they feel better we feel better too.

What happens in the aftermath is a clear indication of the health and balance of the friendship, once they are feeling back to their old self and the issue is solved, what actions do they then take?

In balanced friendships there will be gratitude for the support you have provided, there will be no silence or ghosting, there will be no lack of contact until the next time you are needed.  Most importantly when you are in need of support, they will be right there holding you up in your time of need.

Balanced Friendships

 

Unfortunately empaths and highly sensitive souls have a tendency to be used in relationships and friendships because they give their everything and don’t always have that favour returned.  I know I have experienced this in my life time and time again, I would be the go to person when life got messy, I would drop everything and be there to support them through.  The storm would pass and I would be dropped like a hot potato and not hear from them again until the next storm.

I would always ask myself “why does this keep happening, I am a good person, do I not deserve to have contact with them outside of their storm?”  Of course when I started to unpack it, I could see it as a pattern within me that needed healing, my walls were down there were no boundaries to be seen, it was like open season.

As a recovering people pleaser I would always do whatever I could do to please others and of course that meant doing so much more for them and being there at the drop of a hat with no consideration for my own needs.  All that did was allow them to then also have no consideration for my needs, why would they, I sure didn’t.

I’ll be honest with you until very recently I didn’t even know what a balanced friendship looked like or felt like, thankfully I do now and do you know why I now know that and feel that?  I healed the part inside of me, my inner child who had been hurt so many times by people she thought were friends, that I finally felt deserving of a balanced friendship of someone that cares for and believes in me wholeheartedly.

I will take a shot in the dark and say this is probably your experience too, you may have been hurt by people in the past and now its hard to trust, hard to believe that having people in your corner is even a possibility.

“I am here to tell you right now, you are deserving, you are worthy and your soul-friends are just waiting for you.”

Balanced Friendships

 

The path to your soul-friends is to be open, to be very open to the people you are surrounding yourself with right now.  Disclaimer: It doesn’t mean they are bad, they are not, from your unhealed place you have welcomed in behaviour that is no longer acceptable to you.

Just because you have been friends since school or maybe it’s “but they are my family” or “its just the way they are” or “its just always been this way”.  These are all beliefs that have most likely been placed on you and they are beliefs that are keeping you from being your true self, because that true self is exhausted under the weight of carrying the burdens of others.

Wouldn’t you just love to let all that go?  Start to feel free and know that balanced and soulful connections are possible for you too.

You don’t have to be a doormat, you don’t have to be a sponge.  What if the way in which you have been allowing others to treat you is in fact not only stunting your spiritual growth but theirs as well.  As empaths we are all about helping, so what if just for a moment you could entertain the idea that there is another way to help those around you.

It is not our job to carry the burdens for others but help, teach and support them to carry it for themselves.  Now I know we have a tendency to fix, it’s a natural human desire to take pain way from our loved ones, but in pain lies growth.  I see this so much in the work that I do with my private clients, pain moves them to action so much quicker than pleasure ever does.

If you do everything in your power to take away their pain, you are interfering in their growth process, in the growth of their soul.  I envision our souls sometimes acting like Homer Simpson saying “DOH” we were so close.

So let’s look at this in the concept of balanced friendships, so of course you are going to want to be there for your friends in their times of need, it is your natural state of being but the question is “is it theirs?”.

There may be a number of reasons as to why it is not theirs, seeing the pain in others isn’t easy, being able to hold space for another in their time of need isn’t easy as I am sure you know all too well.  But for empaths we do this naturally, it is our natural state of being, but it isn’t for everyone.

The question you want to ask yourself is “if my friend is unable to hold space for me when I need it, am I okay with continuing to do it for them?”

You might be and that is 100% okay, if you are not if you have had enough, then it is time for change.  Like I said earlier in the article, it doesn’t make them bad or you bad, it is just your expectations have changed and you now require more from your friendships and that is also 100% okay.

Now of course in any friendship there are going to be up and down times, back and forth, times where you need more support and times where they need more support.  Even periods where it may feel that either you or your friend is needing more and that is okay, the important focus is if the tables were turned would it look similar?

I hope this article helps you to start to assess your friendships and gain an understanding as to whether they are balanced and above all know that you are worthy and deserving of balanced friendships with others where you feel supported and held.

I would love to hear your experience within your friendships, comment below you never know who needs to hear it.


I work with empaths and highly sensitive souls providing support, guidance and healing.  To book your online or in-person session click here.


Nicole Ivens | Empath Counsellor

PTSD

PTSD – It Doesn’t Discriminate!

PTSD – It Doesn’t Discriminate!

PTSD – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or now known as PTSS – Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome has always been something associated with the armed forces, that is where you would hear about it the most. In our men and women returning from war, from all the awful things they had to endure, makes sense right?

If we look at what PTSD or PTSS stands for there is no where in there that it says anything about who does or doesn’t suffer from it, not like it is labelled PTSDM – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Military.  It is really just a societal belief that those that have gone to war are most likely going to suffer from it due to the experiences they have endured.

But PTSD Does Not Discriminate, it doesn’t care what your job is or even your experience it just comes from a time where your brain has been overwhelmed by an experience and a trauma capsule is formed to protect you.

I learned this of course in my studies and working as a Counsellor and EFT Practitioner who happens to specialise in Trauma, but most recently PTSD snuck up on me personally.

My daughter was diagnosed with Epilepsy in 2015, with her first tonic clonic seizure in December 2014, I remember bringing her home from the hospital and her lying on my lap and thinking to myself it is my responsibility to keep her safe and alive.  For three years I was on high alert never far from her and if she was at school my phone was glued to my hand, I was on call 24-7.

PTSD

 

I remember going to the gym and participating in cycle class and my phone would sit on the bike and between songs I would always stop to check it, to make sure I hadn’t missed a call from school.

During that time I also had to monitor her at night time for any seizure activity on instruction from the doctor, on our first appointment with her neurologist I remember him saying “You are aware she can die in her sleep, right?”  My husband and I were like a deer in the headlights, um no we weren’t aware of that.  So commenced nightly monitoring and no restful sleep for me.

We finally found a great combination of anti-seizure medication for her a couple of years ago and her seizures settled for the most part, still having some but nothing like they were in the beginning.  So I was able to start to stand down a little, not be on such high alert, able to breathe a little easier.

Fast forward to a couple months ago where her neurologist wanted to wean her off one of her medications, slowly we reduced her medication and this week she was completely off the medication and then whammo the seizures returned with a vengeance.

It hit me really hard, so many tears and breakdowns, I was feeling so worried and of course as a mum to a kid with epilepsy that makes sense right?  I could have easily just left it at that, she is having seizures it’s fair enough to be upset and worried.  But as I looked around both at her and my husband, they were not having the same reaction, they were still upbeat, coping reasonably well.

PTSD

So I had to look deeper at my reaction, why was I feeling this way?  Why was I responding differently?  What were these breakdowns really about?

In steps my PTSD, this experience was reminding me of a time where she was experiencing so many seizures, they were out of control.  So not only was I dealing with what was right in front of me in my present reality, I was also burdened with the past experiences.

It was time to heal what I had experienced previously so I could then deal with just what was happening in the present, without the burden of the past events.  Thankfully I knew exactly how to do that, EFT was and is my saviour, providing me with the emotional freedom I needed to continue to be able to cope with her Epilepsy.

I allowed the memories to come through showing me what parts of me, experiences and events I needed to start to heal.  The first one was as I mentioned earlier in this article, the time when we came home from hospital and she was laying on me and I made the promise to always keep her safe.

I tapped on that promise, on that heavy burden I had been carrying to keep her safe and alive.  Bit by bit, memory by memory and layer by layer I healed and released all that was burdening me and causing the decrease of my ability to cope in the present moment.

I am still a work in progress and as every memory surfaces I will heal and release, not forcing anything or having a timeline but knowing I have the perfect tool to help me to heal my PTSD.

If you can take anything away from this article and my personal experience, I want you to know that each of us can only deal with so much at any one time and if life is overwhelming you or you are finding your reactions feel unbalanced it is not because there is anything wrong with you but you have just dealt with too much for too long.


Please reach out to me if this article resonates with you, I would love to support you and help you to start to heal and release and achieve beautiful emotional freedom.

Nicole Ivens | Empath Counsellor

Independence a Trauma Response

Is Your Independence a Trauma Response?

Is Your Independence a Trauma Response?

 

Something I have witnessed over the years working with my clients is the “Strong Woman” essence.  A facade that sensitive women in particular wear and present to the world to cover up what they are truly feeling below the surface.

Independence a Trauma Response

Strong women are fiercely independent not needing anyone or anything to help them, they use statements like “I can do it myself”.  It is a bit of a joke in our family here as when my husband would ask if I needed help, I would always say “No I can do it myself”.

I would see needing help as a weakness, like there was something wrong with me that I couldn’t handle it myself.  If I showed weakness that would open me up to feeling vulnerable and then essentially heartbreak.

Thinking about children, asking for help is not something they struggle with, if you are anything like me I have said to my kids “if I hear mum one more time, I’m going to change my name”.  So clearly kids are very good at getting their needs met, so when does that change?

When do we go from getting all our needs met and being okay with it, to seeing independence as strength and receiving help and support as weakness?

Experiencing trauma can cause you to do whatever you need to, to feel safe and sometimes that includes shutting yourself off, building that wall and the only person you rely on is YOU.

Telling yourself that you prefer it this way, it’s just easier to do it yourself because then there is no risk of been let down, disappointed or hurt.

This can come from all those times in your life where you were let down, disappointed and hurt by people you trusted.  It may have been a parent saying they will pick you up and then forgot, a sibling saying they will always have your back and then don’t show up, a friend that takes more than they give.

All these experiences add up to you losing trust in people and learning that the only person you can trust is yourself and in steps independence and your strong woman essence.

Whilst your independence may feel like it is protecting you from the outside world it is wearing away at the trust you also have of yourself.

When someone lets you down and you realise you can’t trust them, what are you equating that says about you?  That maybe you can’t trust yourself to make choices about others and who you can allow into your inner circle.

Losing trust in yourself has a massive affect on every part of your being, internal and external world.  It makes it hard to make even the easiest of decisions like what to eat.

Trust in yourself is imperative to living the life you came here to live at this time, to learn the soul lessons and fulfill both your life and soul purpose.

To start to understand more about your independence and learn whether it is a trauma response, is to ask yourself “what does independence mean to me?” and “why am I so independent?”.

These journaling questions are going to help you to start to know whether there is some healing needed, so you can start to trust in yourself and in others and stop living the lonely life of independence.

“You are worthy of a life that is supported by both fellow earthly souls and of course the universe and your cosmic team”


If you are feeling ready to heal your trauma, I would love to support you as you heal and release those events, moments and words of your past.  Click here to book your session.

Nicole Ivens | Empath Counsellor

how long does healing take

How Long Does Healing Take?

How Long Does Healing Take?

 

Thank you to one of my listeners of The Nurtured Empath Podcast for sending in this question.

 
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A very popular question that I get asked a lot, so I know there are many of you that have wondered about this at one time or another.

First thing I am going to say is “how long is a piece of string”.  What I really want you to take away from this article is it is very different for each person, but also flip that around and instead of putting a time line on how long healing is going to take understand it is a lifetime process.

how long does healing take

Healing is a Life Long Process

If you can take that approach that coming to Earth at this time, or at anytime, is about growth, it’s about lessons and it’s about healing.  If you can have that perspective you are not always going to be looking and asking where is the finish line, how long till I’m fixed, how long till I’m healed?

Honestly you are not someone that needs to be fixed, there may be things in your life that you have experienced that are now causing certain patterns to be appearing but it doesn’t mean that you are broken.  It just means that you are carrying around some heavy stuff and it is weighing you down.

It is about taking that time for yourself to start to heal.  I was talking to one of my clients just the other day, because this is a question I get a lot in client sessions as well.  When am I going to be fixed, when is this going to be over?  I have to break the news to them that this is never going to be over and the look on their face is like I just took away their favourite puppy dog.

But it is the truth, healing is an ongoing process, we are always going to be healing.  Even for me I am continually healing each and every day, I am journaling each and every day, I am tapping each and every day.

how long does healing take

Obviously when we start on our healing journey it is a little bit heavier, a little bit more work to be done because we are bringing up things from the past, traumas from the past that we have been carrying around for so long and that can be some heavy and deep work that we need to be doing.

As we are moving forward we don’t want anything that is happening in the present to then be something we need to heal down the track.  So that is what I mean when I say this is a lifetime process of healing and if you can take this approach, you are never going to get to that place again where you have been carrying around all the heaviness because you would of been doing it all along.

I feel that is important to understand why I say it is a lifelong process, so no I can’t tell you an exact timeline for your healing to be done.  It is very different for different people, some clients come to me and are just ready to heal everything, they are done carrying it around and are just ready to finally let it all go.

That takes time, some have been working with me on a weekly basis for over 12 months, they have experienced heavy traumas and we are working on them one by one, layer by layer.  Some clients just stay with me because they love their weekly session, knowing they have an hour that is just for them, no other demands on their time, this is their time.

It is important for you to determine what is it you are looking for, what is it you are wanting to heal?  As I mentioned I have clients that come to me and want to heal everything and then there are some clients that are like there is just this one event that keeps popping up and I just really want to stop thinking about it, or they want to forgive someone or forgive themselves.

They come for a couple of sessions and we heal that event and then they are on their way, but what I notice with these clients as well is they tend to come back.  They heal that one event and are good for about 6 months to a year and then they will reach out to me again and say I need to book in, I have another event surfacing that I would like to heal.

So it depends on the person and what it is that is happening in their life, where they are at and what it is they really want to achieve.  As how long their healing takes and the time that they are working with me 1-1.

As I mentioned in the beginning of this article, one thing I really want you to take from this is, healing is a lifelong process.  It is not always deep heavy stuff, if you are healing on a regular basis, every day.  You are not going to come 10 years down the track and find you have this heavy load you have been carrying around and needs deep and heavy healing.

Take the approach I am going to heal each and every day, I am going to take care of myself in the ways that I know are going to help me (however that looks for you).  As I mentioned I am journaling, tapping (EFT) and meditating everyday and that helps me to heal anything in the present whilst I’m also healing things from the past as they surface from my subconscious mind.

To answer your question “how long does healing take?”  It is a lifelong process but of course we can chunk that down into little bits, healing different events at different times to really help you to start to feel lighter, to feel more relaxed, to feel calmer and to start to achieve things in your life that you truly desire and deserve.

If you have any questions you would like answered, certainly let me know, you can comment below or send me an email.


To work with me privately and start on your healing journey, you can book your online session here.

Nicole Ivens | Empath Counsellor

words affecting your energy

How Your Words Are Affecting Your Energy

How Your Words Are Affecting Your Energy


“With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility” – Spiderman

A quote that came to me when I started to think about the power of the word, clearly being married to a sci-fi geek for the past 20 years is finally rubbing off on me.


Words are so extremely powerful and with that does come a lot of responsibility, as the words you use determine your reality.

Whether it is the words you use when you are talking to yourself, the words you use to describe yourself or the words you use when you are communicating with others.

The words you use when talking to yourself are the most powerful, as you are the person that one you spend the most time with and two listen to the most.

The words you use to describe yourself also have such a big impact on you, if you think about the way in which you describe yourself you can either empower or dis-empower yourself.

This is where you can start to see the affect that your words have on your energy, when you are feeling empowered and confident your energy levels are high.  But when you are feeling dis-empowered due to the words you are using, your energy is going to be low.

I always remember been told as a young mum of two girls that I am their biggest influence as the same sex parent, the way in which I describe myself to them can have a huge affect on how they then see themselves.

For example, say I say something like “I look fat today”, they can then internalise that and think if mum thinks she is fat, maybe I am too.

This really leads into the power of the word when you are also communicating with others, you have an affect on those around you, even if you are not aware of it.  I know for me my kids don’t seem to be listening for the most part, teenage girls for you.  But there will be times where I hear my words coming out of their mouth, so clearly they are listening.

I feel this is very well demonstrated in our current issues in schools around bullying, for the most part for our kids, it is the words that are being said as opposed to physical bullying.  All you have to do is look at the rate of teen/kid suicide from being bullied at school and online, again the power of the word.

The old saying goes:

“Sticks and Stones may break my Bones but Words will never Hurt me”

Boy is that all kinds of wrong, the emotional trauma that comes from the words used against you, words used to describe you and words used to hurt you is so so damaging.

Emotional wounds take so long to heal and unfortunately are not given enough attention in today’s world, if you are emotional you are seen as weak, if you are sensitive, you are seen as weak.

We need to start to give our words more attention, to really understand their power, their influence and their affect not just on us but on those that we interact with.

A great way to start to connect in more with your words is to allow them to move through the following pathways:

words affecting your energy

Making this a habit is going to help you so much to spend more time feeling empowered and influential, using your words for good.  Knowing you have the power to decide how it is you want to feel and how it is you want to make others feel when they are in your presence.  Because not only will the use of your words make a difference, your energy level will be different and those around you will feel it.


It is my honour to hold a safe space for you as you discover, heal and release your past and move towards a place of happiness, peace and serenity.

Together we will:

Unlock the Healer Within, Heal Past Traumas, Understand your Gift and Strengths as an Empath, Heighten your Self-Worth and Self-Confidence, Uncover the Culprit behind your Patterns, Uncover and Release Limiting Beliefs, and Create space for your dreams to manifest

Click here to book your appointment

Nicole Ivens | Empath Counsellor