Empath Toolkit: The 5 Gifts from Challenging People

Sensitive people want to avoid difficult people because of their negative energy.  I understand it feels uncomfortable and at times overwhelming when you absorb lower energies.  Although, shutting down and avoiding others is not the answer to living a passionate, creative life.  What if there were ways to interact, receive actual blessings and not take on other people’s stuff?  It can be done and here are some ways to recognize the hidden gifts offered to you.




  • Gift #1: They strengthen you.  The first order of business is changing the negative fearful language into one of strength and power.  Rather than calling others difficult people, view them as challenging.  Challenges are how you grow, learn and heal.  Yes, you will grow stronger from your encounters with challenging people.  Imagine how good you will feel when you walk away from an encounter maintaining your personal power?  If you haven’t experienced it, let me reassure you that it is one of the best feelings in the world!  Yes, you will not only will you survive to tell the tale, you will thrive.


  • Gift #2: They help you grow.  Challenging people are not that different from you.  I feel your resistance.  Before you click the X in the corner and leave the screen, take a few breaths and read on.  When you really think about it, you have to admit that we are all challenging to someone. Come on, you know you are.  Heck, I know I have been.  For the empath, challenging people usually lack compassion, consideration, and social skills.  This energy pushes your buttons when it touches upon an old wound that needs healing.  These encounters are opportunities that direct you to your old traumas, insecurities and weaknesses.  Even though it seems backwards, mentally, thank the challenging person and get to work on your inner healing.


  • Gift #3: They help you become a clear communicator.  Often challenging people communicate indirectly through manipulations or guilt because they lack social skills.  Unfortunately their methods have produced a result that positively reinforces them to keep doing what they are doing.  They may not know how to get their needs met in healthy ways.  Once you change your communication through assertiveness training and clear boundary setting it changes the communication as a whole.


  • Gift #4: They strengthen your connection to the Divine.  I don’t know about you, when I encounter challenging people I turn to prayer.  I have worn out the Serenity prayer many times over, working to grasp the concept that I cannot control other’s behaviors only my own.  Prior to encounters with challenging folks, I pray to God for wisdom, call upon the Angels for protection and strength and have used Reiki healing symbols.  When you are feeling helpless, remember you have the power when you are connected to Spirit.


  • Gift #5: They help you practice the art of detachment.  Challenging people have special ninja skills for blaming and deflecting.  Everything is everyone else’s fault.  As an empath, it is important to sharpen your skills and knowledge.  Remember that it is not your fault when others act unhappy or are abusive.  There is nothing you could have did or said that causes another person’s behavior ever.  A person’s actions reflect on who they are and behaviors do not lie.  Watch what a person does, not what a person says.  Meditation will help you learn detachment.  If a person says you are selfish.  Question, is that true? Or is this a reflection of their own inner self?  These questions are easily said within your own mind.  I do not recommend psychoanalyzing a challenging person, unless you are a professional.


I could write a book about challenging people and how to cope.  My first step is teaching local classes on the subject and offering phone and in person psycho-spiritual therapy sessions to help you cope, learn assertiveness skills, problem solve and protect your energies.  My intention for this blog was to shed a light on your future communications and to empower you.  Feel free to contact Lisa for more information or to schedule a session.  Lisa Hutchison has over 13 years of mental health experience.  She is a licensed therapist, certified angel card reader, Reiki master, published author and spiritual teacher who works to connect empathic helpers & artist to their spirit and that of the Divine.

If you liked this blog, sign up and receive, 10 Ways to Connect to Spirits FREE plus monthly tips, inspirational articles and more at www.lisahutchison.net

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16 thoughts on “Empath Toolkit: The 5 Gifts from Challenging People

  1. Boy, I didn’t like to learn this while I was learning it, but now am glad I can look at these types of things as gifts instead of feeling bad.
    As they say, when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your list and this blog post. Yes, changing your perspective is such a powerful thing to do. I LOVE that you wrote this down and shared. Everything you said is true! Thank you for reminding me today!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, Lisa! This blog post is singing my song! I am dealing with a very difficult person/situation right now, and I try to remember to just love. It’s hard because of the negative energy. Thank you for the tips on how to shine a positive light on this situation. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. hi Lisa,

    Before I knew what it was, I used to tell people I “absorb” the feelings of others. I wouldn’t describe myself as sensitive but more empathic. Until I learned how to create psychic boundaries and ground myself, dealing with challenging people was always a challenge because I’d absorb their negative energy. More than anything, it was exhausting 🙂 Now, bring ’em on. I know how to keep their energy at bay!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Way to go Peggy, whoo hoo! I also used that term of “absorbing energy” before I heard of the word empath or sensitive person. Boundaries whether they are psychic, physical or emotional are key! Thanks for sharing your experience:) xx


  5. Your post triggered an ear worm: Kelly Clarkson singing, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger
    Stand a little taller….”

    A few days ago I was early for a class I’m enrolled in and one of the “listening-challenged” participants spent a long time telling me about how he still struggles with “being heard.”

    The universe is full of mirrors. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lisa, as a sensitive empathy, this is a great take on using challenges to expand and grow. I remember the days when I didn’t know how sensitive and empathic I am and looked to others to change for me to feel better. The empowering information is life changing!! And boy, am I better acquainted with my Shadow now! :)) Finding the place of Love, from within my grounded, centered, protected sovereign space allows me such freedom…and others theirs.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Outstanding insights on how to see and handle challenging people. The other thing I got out of it is to make sure that you are not being a challenging person first. We often see in others what we need to look at in ourselves. Thanks for posting this! Love me some empath tips! xo

    Liked by 1 person

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