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The Secret World of a Soul Empath

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Have you ever had a friend who brings all their issues to you, and you plow through them handing out insights and healing like a Pez dispenser?

And, then one day, it turns.

They ghost you.

Yet, there wasn’t even a fight. No harsh words. In fact, you’ve racked your brain trying to remember what you did or said that cause the break. But, there’s nothing. You were being the same you you’ve always been, yet they’ve now decided they don’t like you.

Meanwhile, you’re left wondering what is wrong with you. It’s over, you have no reason why, and you are heartbroken. 

Nothing is wrong with you, but you might be a soul empath.

What is a Soul Empath?

Welcome to the secret world of the soul empath. I say secret because when I googled this type of empath, I found no info.


I know. I usually complain that I find inaccurate and victimizing info about empaths, but for soul empath I found nothing. That’s astounding given the commonality of this type of empath. Soul empaths are everywhere. To better understand the world of a soul empath, it’s important to first define what a soul is. Without getting in the weeds about religion or spirituality, I think of my soul as the part of me that here’s to deal with my earthly existence. The ups and downs of being human. We came here with a plan, a list of thing that we are here to learn or clear or work through. My soul keeps track of that and attempts to steer me in the right direction. 

At its core, a soul empath is someone who is here to connect on a soul level. And, that would be the earthy part. However, this is different from an emotional, physical, mental or even a spiritual connection. 

A Soul Empath’s soul level connection acts like a mirror to those who engage with their energetic field.  Their auric field will reflect back the soul work that needs to be addressed in this earthly existence. In fact, they often stir up unresolved issues in others without any intention of doing so.

Unlike traditional (if there is such a thing) empaths, who may be able to pick up on general feelings, thoughts, or emotions, soul empaths have a stronger, even more profound connection, especially when there’s suffering. 

Hence, that’s the reason my daughter and I will dive for the remote any time that commercial about the dogs with the Sarah McLachlan song airs.

To be clear, I’m telling you this not to paint you as a victim, Empath. Instead, I’m validating the challenges of being a soul empath and stating emphatically that you didn’t imagine this, and you’re not crazy,  defective, or not-friend worthy.

The Characteristics of a Soul Empath

If we look back at our empathic anatomy, being a soul empath is a speciality. It’s not a filter, and it’s not a clair. Not all empaths have access to this ability. This is a special kind of empath.

Soul Empath are uniquely designed, but usually have these three traits in common.

  • Stubborn AF – A big stubborn streak runs right through the middle of this empath. They need to do things for themselves. You can tell a soul empath not to do something, but unless you give them a compelling reason why, they’ll do it anyway. They’ll have to see for themselves. 
  • Rebelious with a Capital R – They are  I-see-your-rule-and-I’ll-consider-following-it-if-it-makes-sense-for-me kind of people. They are not fall in line people. They will question everything.
  • Cause Warrior – There is always at least one pet cause that they hold so dear that they will throw down and fight you over. Often, there are many.

The Struggles of a Soul Empath

I don’t know all the soul empaths on Earth, but the ones I do know all have this particular struggle. Soul empaths are typically handled in one of 2 ways:

The Wise Sage:

Soul empaths are embraced for their insight and ability to understand suffering and to see what has lead you to this point in your life . Because they are valued as a teacher or guide or counselor, big problems are brought to them knowing with great confidence that they will provide clear insight.

As the Wise Sage, you sort all the drama and solve all the problems. You give great advice and process emotions and feelings. However, this can trap the empath because being the person who feels into all the issues and  gives all the insights is seductive and can be addictive to the point where it exhausts an empath.


Hater’s City:

This empath experiences rejection. Everything they do or say will be scrutinized and criticized with the ultimate desire of watching them fail. Preferably repeatedly. Lending to the hater’s mantra that you didn’t know what you were talking about, doing, or saying. All the haters can then relax in a place of complacency, so they don’t have to work on all the inner crap you stirred up in them.

Even if you aren’t an empath who cares what others think, sometimes it’s a close friend that takes up residence in Hater’s City.  When that is the last destination of a close relationship, when you find yourself without that person you thought was your friend, that can be soul crushing. Plus, now your former friend’s the mayor of Hater’s City.

Either way there’s an issue. Either your energy is drained from the responsibility of solving everyone’s problems as the wise sage or you have to deal with all the hater energy and that potential heartbreak. This will be the saga of the unskilled soul empath.

Blindspots of the Soul Empath

A soul empath will want to save everyone. Their charitable donation list will be long. They will volunteer for and cry over so much suffering.

Also, a soul empath can have an exaggerated and dramatic connection to a soul group. Lots of different kinds of soul group exist, but in this context I mean a soul group connected through a shared earthly experience carrying the same vibration and frequency of similar life themes and lessons.

The soul empath can connect with an entire soul group and feel what they are feeling which can be overwhelmingly painful when a soul group suffers, like war refugees, detained migrant children separated from their parents, or the afore mentioned dogs in the Sarah McLachlin song commercial.

2 Big Things That Make This Extra Tough to Deal With

  1. Believing this great suffering is your own suffering because it seems like a part of you.
  1. Thinking that every soul group’s fight is your fight, and it’s your job to take up the gauntlet and fight for everyone.

Neither of these is your purpose, Soul Empath.

Support for a Soul Empath

What can best support a soul empath?

Isolation and Downtime

You need your space. Of course, that’s good for any empath, but particularly for a soul empath. Because, while you’re alone, you’re not stirring up anyone’s issues and you can focus on yourself.


Also good for all types of empaths. You’re going to need a daily practice that grounds and clears your energies. Be sure to download “The Care & Feeding of an Empath” freebee from this site for ideas.

A Pet

Soul empaths have a unique relationship with animals, especially pets. They give this empath the space of unconditional love. And, they don’t care if you stir up their energies. A pet brings in grounding if you let them. Also, they often have a warrior energy to help you process the overwhelm.

They will take away that which is keeping you off balance as long as you are wiling to let it go.

My dog will fly across the room if I start to tear up or something on TV scares me. In the second that I get upset, his big face is in mine wanting to know –

What’s up?
Are you ok?
How can I help?
Let me lick you on the face to see if that helps.

Pets are a magnificent gift to the soul empath.


You need connection to people who don’t pull on your energy. Sometimes, I go to a meeting at the library with people I don’t know. It will be a small group, because I’m still a hard-core introvert. The point being, I don’t know these people and they don’t know I’m empathic. 

It doesn’t really matter what the meeting is about. Sometimes, it’s making a craft or a meeting of the spice club. I just go to be in the energy of other people and to connect. 

You may have this connection with friends or neighbors or workmates. If so, great. Whomever you connect to, just make sure they don’t drain your energy.

Managing Your Gift as a Soul Empath

As I stated before, a soul empath connects on a soul level to stir and to reflect the unfinished soul work that someone has yet to resolve. 

A lot of that stirring and reflecting is very unconscious. You won’t even realize that you are doing it.  But, you can work to make it very conscious. By doing so, it can enhance everything you do, because it is very, very powerful. So, I always tell anyone who is a strong soul empath two things: 

  • Manage your intake of information
    • how much news you watch
    • how much drama you witness
    • how much conflict you process 
  • Avoid deep involvement any cause that really affects you deeply, because it can crack open your empathy and make you cry all day.

Nothing is Wrong With You

Knowing what’s happening is helpful. There’s nothing wrong with you. You’re a soul empath. If you see the inner crap being stirred, you now have the opportunity to speak to it. You don’t have to tell everyone you’re a soul empath, but you can say things like, “Sometimes I feel like I have so many things left to do and it’s overwhelming. Do you ever feel like that? I hope you know you can always talk to me without judgment. Thanks for being my friend.”

It might work. It might not. If it doesn’t, let it go. Like the friend I mentioned when I started, she had so many brutal things happen to her once she cut ties with me. And, I wasn’t there to help her understand or transmute them. I know that’s hard. You want to help and heal, but I’ve learned that the Universe often severs the cord with people whose ordeal I won’t be able to weather.

The Value of a Soul Empath

To sum up, the soul empath is a beautiful gift to the world. In other words, they contribute to the elevation of everyone around them. It can be tempting for a soul empath to hate their life. It’s not an easy path to walk. But, even through this hatred, there’s always a deeper need to fix the world. Change it. Because soul empaths actually deeply love and feel responsible for  this planet and its inhabitants. 

But, there’s nothing that you actually have to do externally to save the world. No need to join the peace corp or start a non profit unless that makes you happy. The more that you focus on breaking down and unfurling your own self awareness and getting a clear picture of who you are and what you are capable of doing, the stronger, clearer and brighter light your energy emits. 

Because you are a reflection for others, it’s important you see a clear reflection of yourself. Your soul empath light will be reflected wherever you go. It will be a reflection for everyone you interact with. This is the way you could change your world. It’s the alchemy meant for you.

Remember, the world is your petri dish. Experiment. Everyone has their own unique path. You have great power when your empathic skills are known and honed. Explore them. Let me know what you find. You can reach me at lori@empathery.com. 

woman in a purple shirt with pink glasses
Lori Morrow Kelley

Lori is an empath supporter, podcaster, and blogger living in Texas. She is a gifted over analyzer and dog lover and spends most of her time doing both.

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