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The Intuitive Empath

Have you ever been told you’re too sensitive? Or advised to toughen up and develop a thicker skin?

Maybe you’ve always felt you know what’s going to happen before it occurs, or you know how others are feeling without them having to tell you.

If so, you could be an intuitive empath.

Intuitive empaths are believed to be a unique kind of empath that combines empathy, or the ability to understand and share the feelings of others, with instinct and perception.

Some believe intuitive empathy is a powerful gift that may come with its own unique challenges.

Types of empaths

There are three types of empaths:

  • physical empaths

  • emotional empaths

  • intuitive empaths

“The physical empaths pick up a lot of stuff in their own bodies. They pick up other people’s physical symptoms and can actually take on the illness of other people,The intuitive empaths are those who experience life with extraordinary perceptions.

Intuitive empaths are extremely perceptive and may have the following traits:

  • psychic ability that can manifest as a sense of knowing

  • openness to telepathy

  • ability to receive messages in dreams

  • capacity for animal and plant communication

  • ability to receive gut feelings and the signals of the body

They’re highly intuitive and sensitive, and they can use this to guide their lives.


Intuitive empath characteristics

Some people believe that intuitive empaths fall into certain categories and have subtly different characteristics. However, there’s no scientific evidence to support these claims.

While the research is lacking, you may feel your traits and characteristics resemble one of the following types if you identify as an intuitive empath.

Highly intuitive empath

This kind of intuitive empath is believed to have very high levels of intuition. They are said to be extremely perceptive and sensitive to others’ emotions.

They may take on the suffering of others and often go the extra mile for people as a result. They may also be easily overwhelmed by noises and smells.

Claircognizant intuitive empath

While there is no evidence supporting clairvoyance, some people believe claircognizant intuitive empaths have psychic and telepathic abilities.

It’s suggested that they have a strong sense of knowing, whether it’s telling when someone is lying or perceiving the best course of action to take in any situation.

Emotional intuitive empath

Some people believe that emotional intuitive empaths tend to absorb others’ emotions and can become easily drained and exhausted as a result. It’s believed they are hugely impacted by external energy and need to be very careful about who they choose to spend time with.

One studyTrusted Source noted that people with high trait empathy may be able to tap into other people’s emotions. However, there is no evidence that this is the case for intuitive empaths specifically.

Animal and plant intuitive empath

Animal and plant intuitive empaths are believed by some to feel a deep connection to flora and fauna and have the ability to communicate with them. They are considered to be very nurturing, loving, and compassionate.


Downsides to intuitive empathy:


Have I been labelled as overly sensitive or too shy throughout my life?

“Often, intuitive empaths are labelled as too sensitive all their lives,” Orloff says. “They are often told to develop a thicker skin, which can make [them] feel like there’s something wrong with [them].”

Do I often feel like I don’t fit in?

Orloff calls this the “square peg round hole syndrome. It often comes with a strong sense of not belonging.

“Intuitive empaths often feel like they don’t fit in with the rest of society,” she says.

Do crowds drain me? Do I need a lot of alone time to revive myself?

Big crowds can feel overwhelming and draining for intuitive empaths, as there are so many competing energies. They tend to prefer one-on-one company.

Do noises, smells, or excessive talking overwhelm me?

Likewise, intuitive empaths can experience sensory overload and feel drained or overwhelmed by too many stimuli.

Do I prefer taking my own car places, so I have the option to leave?

“Intuitive empaths want to have the option to leave. They don’t like to be trapped in social situations,” Orloff says. “It’s too overwhelming for them. They need to give themselves permission to leave.”

Do I tend to socially isolate?

When you absorb the energies of others, it’s only natural that you might like to spend time alone. For this reason, intuitive empaths often isolate themselves and shy away from social situations.


Do I pick up intuitions about people and know things without them telling me?

Perhaps you know straight away when someone is lying, or you get a strong feeling about something right before it happens. These are characteristics of intuitive empaths.

Have other people been frightened by my intuitions?

“Ask yourself: Can I predict the future? Do I know things without people having to tell me?” Orloff suggests.

Intuitive empaths often have an innate knowledge about people, places, and events that can seem spooky or disconcerting to others.

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