As a visibility strategist who works with Facebook as a platform for connecting, I spend most of my day stuck in a chair and creating content or communicating with other users.
Being visible requires a lot of effort and consistency, and, for an empath like me, this is not always the easiest thing to do.
Social media is not much different from the real world, although most users do not understand how close to real-life interaction with other people it really is. In fact, it is even a little bit more exaggerated, as for some users it is easier to express their negativity or frustration publicly in a much more intense manner than they would ever do it face-to-face.
Most of the time, I do not feel affected by it. I have trained myself not to react, or to simply avoid people who are aggressive or negative, or even just a little too publicly vulnerable. We have full control over our newsfeeds, with readily available features like unfollowing, snoozing, or even blocking those users pretty much within a couple of clicks on every post.
Yet, there are days when I unexpectedly get exposed to a raw emotion that I feel deeply on a physical level, mainly since I help people overcome the fear of visibility, and that often comes with some severe blocks and resistances.
For example, I regularly run an 11-day challenge where people get comfortable with live streaming. For some, it is just a way to practice consistency. For others, it is an attempt at finding their voice. Occasionally, for some members, it is when they face their innermost fears, feelings of not being good enough, not being worthy, impostor syndrome, and, to me, it feels just as terrifying and physically painful to watch them trying to push through their limitations as if I was doing it myself.
These are the hardest moments for me. I know the truth, I understand what they are going through, and I know this is so much simpler than they think. There is something inside that is lovingly “protecting” them from what they perceive as danger—being seen, being in the spotlight, sometimes being a leader. I am talking about our comfort zone.
Unfortunately, the “protector” in me is seriously overdoing it, like a mother who never lets her child out of sight. Those children usually grow up the most disempowered, scared, and suppressing who they are, which can be the root of their sufferings. Years ago, I lost my best friend who was brought up that way, suffocated by his mother’s protective love.
Yes, your comfort zone is there to protect you, but instead, it takes away your power and makes you feel insignificant and unimportant. Yet, by ignoring that voice, no matter how loud it is, and taking tiny daily steps toward the calling you hear inside, you can change your life forever.
And I know it, as I had that voice inside for a while too.
And it is only because I grew through this fear and experienced that persistent voice telling me to stop, and then chose not to listen, that I know that it is not real.
It is now my mission to help others understand this too.
So, as an empath working with people on social media and empowering them to be more visible and push through their fears, no matter how occasionally painful and overwhelming it feels, I found the best way to deal with it is to protect my energy.
I take a break, take a walk in nature somewhere, go to the movies, or share a beautiful meal with people I love. And sometimes I write about it, because creating is so healing and powerful.
So tomorrow, I will have new energy to hold the hands of those who need me. I will have new energy to live stream, chat with people in messenger, engage on their posts, support my students, support my friends, and give them the light that is re-given to me daily!
Bottom line, if you are an empath who must deal with being visible on social media, do not let it stop you. Just allow yourself time to recharge and try not to get too overwhelmed. It may feel hard for a second, but you are probably doing something amazing for others, something that inspires them to make a decision, to take a step forward, to become a better version of themselves.
To me, it is all worth a little discomfort.