Mother, Boss, Empath- When Energies Collide - By Erica Cote for MotherHustle
“I never questioned how I could feel when people felt sad, or anxious, or upset, or even simply off. … I didn’t know how much I could be affected by those I came in contact with.”

My friend is a bikini bodybuilding competitor. And I went with her to her first ever competition, and it was also my first time attending a show. I didn’t know what to expect but I expected the day to pretty much feel like any other event I’d ever attended.

Until I got the damp-dishrag feeling.

Like my entire world looked and felt shaded. It was as if it was dropped on my head and I couldn’t shake it off. It wasn’t until quite a while after that day that I realized what it was. What had made me walk through a perpetual fog that day.

I am an empath.

That day, the competing energies of everyone in that building was just too much for me. Competitors. Spectators. Vendors. It all made it so that I felt stuck and couldn’t unstick myself.

Once I knew what the feeling was, I could think of a few times that I had felt similarly before. But it was never to that extent, and it’s never been that heavy since. But finally having a name to go with the feelings, along with tactics to combat it, really make the difference for me.

The strangest part is that I don’t know how I never noticed it before.

I never questioned how I could feel when people felt sad, or anxious, or upset, or even simply off. How I felt the energy they exuded, for better or for worse. I didn’t know how much I could be affected by those I came in contact with. Kind of like that feeling of walking into a room and feeling that something isn’t right….take that in the directions of just about all emotions and give it a huge range that it can fluctuate within.

Yep. That’s it.

But even with moments where I have to fight off the heavy or negative feelings of others, I wouldn’t trade this.

Being an empath means I can feel the joy of my company’s bridal clients. I can celebrate a coaching client that just had a mindset shift that warms like the sun that will change everything for them. I can feel the love oozing out of my kids as they give me the most delicious squeezes and love words. I can almost see the support and pride of those that believe in me and hold me up. And I am primed and ready to give it right back to fill their reserves as well.

I’ll take the heavy, as long as I can spread the love.


MotherHustle Panelist Erica Cote is an entrepreneur, coach, consultant, writer, and speaker who helps people connect through conversations that challenging female business leaders to be the change they want to see. By voting with their dollars, supporting other female owned or oriented businesses, and hiring from a place of support across racial and cultural lines, change happens. When she’s not coaching and supporting her clients, you can find her writing poetry or cuddled up with her two little ones. You can find her at Erica Courdae and Silver Immersion, LLC.

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