Super Empath Vs Narcissist & What We Can Learn From Both (2024)

The dance between the narcissist and the empath is motivated by the desire to seek love and to heal the wounded narcissist, the empath becomes the perfect host to the narcissist.

Super Empath Vs Narcissist
Photo created by cookie_studio by freepik

While an empath may feel powerless in the relationship, it is important to keep in mind that a narcissist cannot exist within the relationship without the engagement of the well-intentioned empath.

Keep reading to see what we can learn from both.

What Is A Super Empath?

The term empath comes from empathy, which is the ability to understand the experiences and feelings of others outside of your own perspective. The super empath also has a deep intuition about what the people around them want.

A super empath has a strong sense of self that will help you fend off people who take you for granted. 

You know who you are and what you will and won’t accept, the narcissists among us will have a very hard time convincing you you’re anything other than worthy of a healthy relationship and a good person.

Being in tune with others’ emotions is a gift, and can be seen as something that makes you an amazing giving person. Trust your gut.

Take time to sit alone and consult your feelings and intuition. Know the red flags!!!  And if you do find yourself stuck in the toxic tango of an empath/narcissist pairing, have the courage to leave. It’s not your job to fix people.

Related: Empathetic Mindset – Important Traits

Super Empath Traits

Super empaths often recognize when anyone around them is hurting, no matter how strong a facade is being shown to the outside world. While it can be a benefit, sometimes it’s hard to know when you need to stop — for your own sake.

Here are some traits of a super empath:

1. A Lot Of Empathy

Say your friend just lost their dog of 15 years. Empathy is what allows you to understand the level of pain she’s going through, even if you’ve never lost a beloved pet.

In other words, someone else’s pain and happiness become your pain and happiness.

As a super empath however, you naturally take things further and you have the self awareness to know they aren’t your emotions.

2. Closeness And Intimacy Can Feel Overwhelming

The empath often finds frequent close contact difficult, which can make romantic relationships challenging.

You want to connect and develop a lasting partnership, however spending too much time with someone can lead to stress, overwhelm, or worries about losing yourself in the relationship.

3. Highly Sensitive

You might also notice sensory overload or a “frayed nerves” feeling from too much talking or touching. Yet when you try to express your need for time alone, you absorb your partner’s hurt feelings and feel even more distressed.

Super empaths know how to build healthy, clear boundaries to help reduce distress.

Related: Levels Of Listening – Complete Guide

4. Good Intuition

Maybe you pick up on dishonesty easily or just know when something seems like a good (or bad) idea. This could be your super empath traits at work.

An empath tends to be able to pick up on subtle cues that provide insight on the thoughts of others.

5. Comfort In Nature ​

Anyone can benefit from spending time in natural settings, however these sensitives may feel more drawn to nature and remote areas, since they provide a calming space to rest from overwhelming sensations, sounds, and emotions.

You might feel completely at peace hiking alone in a sunlit forest or watching waves crash against the shore. Even a quiet walk through a garden or an hour sitting under trees may lift your spirits, soothe overstimulation, and help you relax.

6. You’re Not Comfortable In Crowded Places

An empath can absorb positive and negative energy just by being in someone’s presence. In crowded or busy places, this sensitivity may seem magnified to the point of being almost unbearable.

When picking up on negative emotions from toxic people, energy, or even physical distress from people around you, you might become overwhelmed or physically unwell. Unless as a super empath you have learned how to distinguish them from your own. 

Related: Reasons The Gift Of Empathy Is A Blessing And Not A Curse

7. You Have A Hard Time Not Caring

An empath doesn’t just feel for someone — they feel with someone. It can even be to the point of distress.

Taking in others’ emotions so deeply can make you want to do something to help them. A person mature in their sensitive nature will know it isn’t always possible.

It can feel difficult to watch someone struggle and act on your natural inclination to help ease their distress.

8. Difficulty Setting Boundaries

There may be a struggle to set boundaries because you might believe boundaries suggest you don’t care about your loved ones when the exact opposite is true.

The experiences of others have such an intense impact on empaths, boundaries become even more essential. They help you set limits around words or actions that may affect you negatively, allowing you to get your own needs met.

9. You See The World In Unique Ways

Deeper emotional understanding can drive your intuition, and you likely pick up on things other people miss or make connections that aren’t clear to anyone else.

Environments that don’t provide space for emotional expression can dampen your creativity and sensitivity, leaving you disinterested, disengaged, and struggling to thrive.

Related: 71+ Empath Quotes To Empower Your Sensitive Side

10. Always Putting On An Act

You may recognize the feeling of putting on an act in order to please others.

You may find yourself changing your personality between friendship groups. With one, you’re the clown, with another, you’re the organizer.

You don’t necessarily change who you are, but you do play up the parts you think will get the best reaction, the biggest laughs, depending on what people around you want.

It’s exhausting — and it may leave you with the unsettling feeling of not actually knowing yourself. The super empath has overcome this.

11. You Only See The Good In People

The empath views everyone as a good guy. You find it all too easy to understand someone’s point of view.

If you notice you can’t genuinely say someone’s a bad person, or point out negative qualities in a toxic friend, take a moment to practice super empathy for yourself. 

12. You Guess Things You Wouldn’t Normally Know

If all you are is observant of the emotions of others, it might be time to take a step back and figure out if you’re overstepping the line.

Even though situations and emotions are obvious to you, for others it’s their deepest, most intimate part of themselves that they’re not aware of sharing.

Reflect on your assumptions before you discuss them aloud, and ensure you’re not bringing something to light that someone prefers to keep to their personal life.

Related: 21 Reasons Why Intuitive Empaths Have A Gift

Are Narcissists And Empaths The Same?

They both have the unique advantage of understanding people’s motivations, emotional needs and inner desires. This intuitive attainment gives them the power to know where a person’s vulnerabilities and insecurities lie.

What differentiates empaths from narcissists is that while empaths use this information to try to help other people, narcissists use this knowledge for their personal gains.

These sensitives toxically attract narcissists because they mirror each other’s shadow sides. They unconsciously project their deepest fears onto the other.

The narcissist puts on an air of false strength at the outset, the confidence, the apparent satisfaction with self, appearing comfortable in their own skin, at ease with others. They’re capable of lighting up a room and so forth can be a huge attraction.

The super empath actually sees something of themselves in the narcissist. That is not to say they’re also a narcissist. Far from it.

The true super empath is just as engaging as the narcissist and thus there is a mutual attraction. 

The narcissist finds such people a challenge and therefore they’re usually the recipient of some lesser narcissists and most often the greater narcissist.

Related: How To Spot An Empath

Empathic Traits

  • Put others needs before their own, and are motivated by an intrinsic need to help and heal humanity
  • Sometimes take on other people’s problems to find solutions
  • Struggle with fears of rejection, abandonment and loss
  • They love deeply 

Narcissistic Traits

  • Put their own needs first, and are motivated by their own self-interest and ego-driven desires
  • Manipulate and emotionally abuse people to further their own interests
  • Struggle with fears of commitment, emotional engulfment, and vulnerability
  • Have a hidden sense of insecurity requiring compliments and favors from other people so their wounded ego can get inflated

Related: How Narcissists Destroy Empaths: 19 Things You Need To Know

An immature empath enters into these relationships, because they do not yet understand how to fully use their gift of super empathy. They believe loving others is the solution, without cultivating self-love first.

Such a person lacks boundaries, and unconsciously looks upon the narcissist to set these boundaries for them.

They will benefit by learning to become emotionally independent by objectively detaching themselves from their emotions, before they can have healthy relationships.

Similarly, narcissists are actually unaware empaths. They live out the intensity of their deep feelings through the empathic person, as they don’t know how to handle them.

Narcissists are not born, they’re made out of difficult circumstances. They’ve lost touch with their true nature, condemning their own sensitivity as a disgusting weakness and inconvenience, which must be controlled.

When they learn to become emotionally responsible by allowing themselves to feel their emotions, they can have healthy relationships.

Usually, instead of owning their feelings as part of being human, they project their insecurities on other people. They realize most people withdraw their love and care from them due to their narcissistic abuse.

However, they know how to emotionally manipulate and get back the inauthentic love.

Related: 25 Empaths Protection Tools – How To Deal With Being An Empath

How Do You Know If You’re A Super Empath?

According to Dr. Judith Orloff, “The trademark of an empath is feeling and absorbing other people’s emotions and/or physical symptoms because of their high sensitivities.”

There are different types of empaths, and each relates to life experiences in a unique way. Depending on the type of empath you are, you may be extra sensitive to certain types of people and situations.

1. Emotional Empath

You’re able to read and feel the emotions of others.

While this is a standard empath trait, in general, this type is especially sensitive to feeling and reading others’ emotions without others having to explain what they are going through or why they are feeling a certain way.

2. Physical Empath

You have the capacity to feel another person’s pain and symptoms within their own body. This type is considered to be a medical empath.

Related: Do Narcissists Feel Guilt? 4 Key Insights

3. Precognitive Empath

You hold the capability to feel a situation or event occur prior to it actually happening. This can be seen through dreams of extreme emotional and physical upheaval.

It’s worth mentioning you may experience a sudden sense of anxiety or nervousness and their intuition becomes intensified or heightened. This type of empath usually has heightened sensitivity.

4. Heyoka Or Super Empath

This empathic supernova is the most powerful type to come across. Known in Native American culture as the “Sacred Clown,” a heyoka tends to be unconventional in their thoughts and actions, and acts as emotional mirrors for those around them.

These people embody all that is good and genuinely want to mend people. Often, the greater narcissist personality mistakes this human for a regular empath and begins the love-bombing stage. They’ll go along with the game until they recognize the first red flag of the devaluation phase.

It’s their gift to make people question themselves and promote emotional healing in those around them.

It’s extremely rare to be a super empath. Research estimates that just 1-2 percent of the population possesses empathic traits.

Related: Clear Signs You Are A Heyoka Empath – Powerful & Rare

Super Empath Destroy Narcissist

Covert narcissists know how to break an empath. But a super empath can fight back after recognizing this passive-aggressive behavior. 

Super Empath
Photo by Michelle Cassar on Unsplash

Upon realizing this, an empath can dominate a narcissist and call upon a confrontation. They have a unique ability to turn the tables around and clearly state who is in charge. Because of this, a narcissist’s ego that gives them a delusional power comes under threat. 

Someone with super empathy can become incredibly dangerous to them, their worst nightmare, when we ‘get it’ and stop reacting to start responding. The greater narcissist will then fear us, because there is no telling what we’ll do.

At this point we actually do nothing, we just watch, we use patience, we block, we give nothing away, we record everything, we keep the police updated, and we simply just do not respond to any of their pokes or anything.

A narcissist’s goal is to drain other people’s energy, this is fought back by an empath who can turn cold and destroy their ego.

Such an experience is highly transformational for an empath who can react to a narcissist’s inappropriate behavior by powerful silence and good comebacks. 

The greater narcissist can easily play the victim and emotionally manipulate empaths. However, one who is self aware can take the lead and destroy the narcissist by using their people skills and setting boundaries. 

Related: Best Ways To Emotionally Detach From A Narcissist

Steps To Deal With Narcissistic Traits

  • When a narcissist makes fun of you, with the same casual and light tone, make a comeback. This will unsettle them and they would eventually stop making such attacks.
  • When a narcissist does things passive-aggressively, point it out and ask them the reason behind it. This puts them on the spot and they would have difficulty defending themselves.
  • When a narcissist points out a flaw in you, point to the same flaw in them. 
  • Empathic sensitivity is a superpower. Use it by going in the opposite direction of their conditioning. 

For example, instead of understanding other people’s pain and helping them, try to reflect and give yourself space. Try to understand your own pain and take care of yourself instead of others.

  • Learn to catch the red flags of a narcissist and acknowledge they exist. Receive help from a therapist and reflect on the narcissist’s and your own patterns of responding and learn how to to change them. 

Related: Expert Tips – How To Talk To A Narcissist

When A Super Empath Leaves A Narcissist

Once the narcissistic abuse is exposed by logic and fact they have no choice but to move on to a new victim.

Hit the narcissist where it hurts the most, that is to expose the false persona and mind games. Super empaths in fight mode are the absolute best opponents to narc traits.

Here’s what can happen when a super empath leaves a narcissist.

Related: Reactions To Expect When A Narcissist Knows You Have Figured Him Out

1. You Leave Them Hanging

You are the narcissist’s oxygen supply and if they lose you they’ll experience a black out. However, you are fine without anyone, so you aren’t afraid to leave the narcissist.

Therefore, you can walk away and stop being a victim and tolerating their abuse.

2. Reflective Character

You’ll graciously and perfectly imitate the narcissist’s ugly personality by reflecting their own faults – the anxiety, stress and tension at them. This will irritate them so much it will melt them in their own fire.

3. Empathizing With Them

When you don’t fall in line with their predictions they are puzzled. This leads to embarrassment and they shut down as their ugly truths rise to the surface.

Instead of fighting back you’ll hit them with, “I know how you feel” or “I’m sorry you feel that way”. This will confuse the narcissist.  

4. Reveal Their Insecurities First

They’re expecting you to have low self esteem after playing their mind games. However, no one wants to see you angry because the sweet, charming you is replaced by the ruthless you. Your honesty is not endearing to the narcissist.

You always know what the narcissist is up to. By letting them say and do whatever they want, they’ll be speechless not knowing what to do without an outlet for their insecurities.

Related: What Makes A Narcissist Panic? – 15 Proven Strategies

5. Self Worth

Being told they’re losers, pathetic or delusional turns their ego to ashes. This is why they’re envious of your emotional independence. Your self esteem is entirely accepting of who you are.

Narcissists are strangers to awareness and acceptance. They struggle to meet their self esteem requirements.

6. Feeling Their Emptiness

They’ll lie about prestige, wealth and achievements and belittle others. You know these are false layers to cover up the emptiness inside. You’ll expose this by asking things like, “What do you gain from that?” 

They’ll then feel pathetic about themselves without saying a word.

7. Showing Indifference

Letting them know you’re not impressed by showing indifference will irritate the narcissist. They can’t understand how this can be.

Related: 12 Types Of Empaths And How To Identify Yours

Do Narcissists Love Super Empaths

The empath is hoping to be truly seen and loved by the narcissist, in fact, their sense of worth may be tied to this outcome.

In other words, if they can make the narcissist who’s incapable of real love, love them, then they are truly worthy of love. This is an unhealthy relationship not held together with love.

They try to heal the wounded narcissist, hoping that once healed, they in turn will provide the empath with the love and validation they so desperately desire.

Accordingly, the narcissist must put the extra miles in, in terms of seduction to ensnare the super empath. Once that trust has been earned the benefits are huge for the narcissist. 

The empath is easier to “break” than the super empath. They’re made of sterner material and will resist the negative machinations of the narcissist.

The narcissist may dis-engage if he doesn’t feel able to make an impact on the super empath and seek the primary source of validation elsewhere.

The greater narcissist however, knows who they’ve ensnared and is aware they must unlock the fuel source, this time negative, of the super empath and once it’s done the tidal wave of fuel is to be enjoyed.

Related: 21 Real Problems Empaths Have In Romantic Relationships

Super Empath Awakening

When the empath fights their abilities it works against your well being and spiritual development. By learning how to master these sensitive skills as a superpower, it’ll actually work for you.

Following are three broad stages of a super empath awakening.

1. The Unaware Empath

Whether we sharpen our empathic skills or not, we all are fundamentally connected. It’s a collective consciousness, which means we can all feel each other’s emotions to some degree. 

The problem arises when empaths take on too much without knowing what’s happening and they experience a lot of mood swings and inner tug of war every time they try to help someone else.

You tend to soak it all in – the good and the bad from a conversation, without realizing what’s yours to deal with and what wasn’t even yours to begin with.

The Root Cause Of Narcissism: 7 Important Influence Factors

2. The Retracted Empath

You begin to retract when you see how harmful something is for you.

So at this point, as a retracted empath, its common to think of thoughts like:

  • “I care too much”; “I’m too nice”
  • “Why am I the only one that has to understand everybody”
  • “Why can’t people get me like I get them”
  • “I love helping people but I hate being around them”

This is the ego-mind waking up roaring as a means to protect you. Nothing wrong with

that, but if you keep buying into these thoughts, you will find yourself distancing from the 

people you used to love being around.

Related: Things Narcissistic Mothers Say

Tips How To Deal With A Narcissistic Elderly Mother

3. The Super Empath

If you’re the rare type of person who understands struggle and has mastered how to transmute it, you’re able to step into the true power of being an empath. You are a superhero.

These people make a beautiful coach, healer or therapist because they’re able to hold space for all healing – their own and of others. They were willing to do the inner work and now they’re able to help people around them dispel the darkness.

They’re no longer afraid of being ‘hit’ by the wave of emotion. They know it’s there for a reason, and they have all the right tools and mindset to deal with it.

The key to healing and having a healthy relationship is to move into a place of self-awareness and self-management, rather than laying blame on each other.

Mindfulness and acceptance of one’s own dark side, is what can transmute these negative emotions from your worst nightmare into positive ones and transformation of both the empath and the narcissist into ‘aware empaths’.

They can then productively use their high emotional intelligence to realize their potential and contribute positively to society.

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About The Author

Bijan Kholghi is a certified life coach with the Milton Erickson Institute Heidelberg (Germany). He helps clients and couples reach breakthroughs in their lives by changing subconscious patterns. His solution-oriented approach is based on Systemic- and Hypnotherapy.