Empaths R Us – Dr. Judith Orloff




Welcome again to the “Empaths R Us” interview series of empaths.

Today and I am honoured to be posting an interview with well-known psychiatrist Dr. Judith Orloff. (I’m even more honoured as I know she was in the middle of a book tour and had very little time, but she managed to complete this interview).

Dr. Judith Orloff, MD is an assistant clinical professor of Psychiatry at UCLA and author of the New York Times and international bestseller “Emotional Freedom”. As a board-certified psychiatrist, Dr. Orloff blends her traditional medical skills with intuition to enhance patient care.

She synthesizes the pearls of traditional medicine with cutting edge knowledge of intuition, energy, and spirituality to achieve physical and emotional healing. She passionately asserts that we have the power to transform negative emotions and achieve inner peace. Dr. Orloff’s site can be accessed here.

Many thanks to Dr. Orloff for sharing her personal experiences as an empath.  I invite you to visit her site here and read her book, “Emotional Freedom”, to explore her techniques for best using your empathy.


Empath means “becoming one”. Empaths have the ability to become one with something (humans, animals, crystals, environment,  etc.) How would you describe the kind of empath you are?

In Emotional Freedom, I talk about an emotional type called an Emotional Empath. This is someone who is sensitive, loving, intuitive but they are an emotional sponge.  They can absorb the stress and negative energy of the world into their own bodies and get exhausted. That’s why I’ve had to practice the strategies in the book in my own life to set clear limits and boundaries with people.

How would you describe your most dominant empath skill?

Sensing what people are feeling emotionally in my own body.

At what age did you consciously become aware that you were more sensitive than others?

As a young child, 7 or 8. I couldn’t go in crowded shopping malls without feeling exhausted or picking up aches or pains I didn’t have before.

How did this empathic ability affect your childhood?

I had no idea what my empathy meant so I was confused and blamed myself for being overly sensitive. My doctor-mother told me “get a thicker skin” which made me feel like I had done something wrong and had to change.

How did your parents or family reaction to your hypersensitivity?

They wanted me to toughen up.

Did you view of your empathy change as you became an adult?

Now I see it as a great gift but I’ve learned how to protect my energy and empathy with the techniques I share in Emotional Freedom. It lets me be passionate, go deep, have compassion with people, experience the nuance of life to the fullest. It also helps me as a psychiatrist have more empathy and compassion with my patients.

At what age did you fully realize what being an empath meant?

In my thirties.

What did you feel like when you realized that there were other empaths in the world?

I felt I was okay and wasn’t so alone or considering myself weird. Now Emotional Freedom gives that sense of being understood to other empaths out there. Empaths need to unite and support one another

How would you say this empathic ability shaped your life overall?

It has made me more sensitive as a psychiatrist, more intuitive, more loving, and able to set clear health limits and boundaries. As an author of Emotional Freedom it has allowed me to help empaths all over the world come into their own power!

Do you consciously use your empathic skills in how you make a living?

Yes, I use it as a psychiatrist with patients every moment and also as a speaker I use it to tune in and empathize with groups.

What are the best techniques that you have found to keep your emotional boundaries intact with others?

Learn that “no is a complete sentence”.

What is your favourite thing about being an empath?

Connecting with the ecsatatic forces of nature.

What is your least favourite thing about being an empath?

Being around chronic talkers.  In Emotional Freedom I have a chapter on Emotional Vampires, people who suck your energy dry. All empaths should read that chapter so they know how to handle these people and not be drained.

What is your best piece of advice for other empaths?

You are beautiful!

Develop your sensitivities but practice the strategies in Emotional Freedom to protect your empathy and energy.

Dr. Orloff invites you learn more about helping yourself as an empath, by reading the information in her book “Emotional Freedom”.


Need a quick 20-minute intuitive tune-up? Purchase on the “Book A Reading” page, I can help you out.  You can also always email me at conduitofjoy@hotmail.com.




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6 Responses to Empaths R Us – Dr. Judith Orloff

  1. Kara & Judith,
    I really this interview.
    I read Judith’s first book when it came out in 1996. It was as if a huge light had gone off after reading it. I realized that I could relate entirely (except for becoming a doctor!).

  2. I definitely need to do the reading on emotional vampires. Sometimes I have to leave the room or hang up the phone right away, because I am immediately exhausted, as if all the life got sucked right out of me. Other times I can see where it’s going and deal with it – and I haven’t yet figured out what the difference is caused by. I like that no is a complete sentence – it sure is! Thanks for the article, ladies!

  3. conduitofjoy says:


    Good to figure out that you need to be aware of emotional vampires! Perhaps you can figure out visualizations for shields when you are answering the phone…

    I also liked the advice regarding the word “no”…still working on that.


  4. Clare says:

    This confirmation and realisation has come at a very, very good time for me. I am 47 and have struggled all my life with this – even as a very small child – I have berrated myself and been abused emotionally and physically because I didnt know how to explain my reactions to people – how I feel in regard to environments, smells and how I am constantly reading other peoples emotions. I cant explain but I ‘know’ how people feel when I am around them, I sense changes in the atmosphere during conversation, I unwittingly absorb individual emotions when in a group of people. It is exhausting. My present partner is off the scale energetically, verbally and constantly challenges me. I love him dearly but am permanently exhausted, anxious and drained. I have questioned myself continuosly – what is wrong with me? Why do I feel the need to retreat into myself and escape from him. I even thought of going on anti-depressants in a bid to switch off the signals and become numb! Thank you Judith for bringing this to light, I can now start working on how I am going to manage it. Its never too late!

  5. conduitofjoy says:

    Hi Clare,

    Welcome to my blog! I can identify with the relief you felt when you read Dr. Orloff’s materials on dealing with being an empath. It really is exhausting if you are unaware of it, and aren’t using a few simple tools to help yourself out. I also spent alot of my life, from a small child into my 40′s, not knowing what was “wrong” with me, or how to help myself. It was such a relief to find out that there were others like me, and not only was I not some kind of a freak, that my abilities actually made me pretty darn special!

    To keep myself from getting over-loaded, I need plenty of alone time, and nature to replenish. I also need to use salt water every day to help me neutralize my energy field, to help me release others emotions and “things” I have accidentally picked up throughout my days. This type of ritual is as simple as washing my hands in the sink, and saying “I release all others emotions, and all that does not serve me”. I try to do it a couple of times throughout the day, and definitely at the end of the day.

    Please feel free to read all of the other interviews with the other empaths as well (all of the posts with “Empaths R Us” in the title). I got helpful information from each one of the interviews.

    We are special people, and deserve to feel that way about ourselves and our amazing abilities. Yay empaths!

    Lots of love to you,

  6. BrenC says:

    Hi, I am new to this concept about empaths and to this site. Dr. Orloff’s name keep appearing on my online search and she seems to be very knowledgeable on Empaths subjects. I have heard about the word “empaths”, but paid no attention to it until one day, through experience, I realized that I maybe one, but not so convinced yet.

    My experience was I felt my friend’s fever or heat 6 ft away from her bed. I am not sure everyone can feel that, but my friend was surprised on how sensitive I am and that includes me. My friend felt fine the next day, but I told her she is still sick. She didn’t believe me at first, but 2 hours later she told me I was right. All I did was raise my hand towards her without touching her and I felt the fever or heat, although not as strong as the other day. Could this be an empath’s quality?

    A lot of the information I have read from Dr. Orloff’s site seem to relate to me, but not so convince yet that I am an empath because sensing other people’s emotions is a matter of interpretation in my opinion. Some maybe good at it, but in my case, I am not sure yet because of a lot of reasons which includes my depression and anxiety, past experiences and so forth which makes it complicated. But most of the time I seem to be feeling things that I can’t explain which makes me isolate myself from people or crowds. The only blessing is I am aware of my body actions, especially my hands and what comes out of my mouth and thoughts.

    Hopefully, what I have experienced during the time I visited my sick friend will confirm it so I will know what steps to take. I spoke to counsellor and persons in the medical field about it. They don’t seem to contradict me, but I am not sure if they really believe in Empaths.

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