Perhaps vampires is a bit strong but…

I don’t want to worry you but we are surrounded by vampires.  They are sucking the very life out of you right now.  They are feeding on you and dragging you down.  If you don’t fight back you will become one of them.

I don’t mean the fictional blood sucking villains that have enjoyed such a renaissance of late.

These are real. they seem to be everywhere and often disguise their true intentions by posing as friends and colleagues who have your best interests at heart.  We all know the kind of person who, after a brief conversation, leaves you feeling emotionally drained and somehow ‘soiled’.  They are often easy to spot and so avoid.  But sometimes we have no choice but to interact with them.  And sometimes they seem like really nice people and then when you realise….it’s too late.

These emotional vampires lead fairly empty lives and so seek to feed on others’ emotions.  It works best for them if their victims are in a highly emotional state.  They seem to find it much easier to create a negative state such as a sense of unease, fear, tension than a positive state such as joy.   They come in a variety of forms but share a lot of common traits including believing that they are the most important person around, whose needs are the most important and by definition whose beliefs are correct.  They are always right, always know best and failure is never their fault.

It is easiest to avoid them but sometimes we all have to deal with them and as a wooden stake through the heart might be controversial these days there are other ways to protect yourself.

Remaining calm and measured is the equivalent of dangling a bulb of garlic round your neck.  By remaining calm and choosing our response rather than letting our animal brains hijack us into being emotional, we remove the very stuff they feed on.  Of course we all have negative emotions – even the highly trained Buddhist Monks recognise these emotions.  But we do not have to dwell on them, we can move on and choose another state.  Look for the positive in any situation and be accepting of the issues you are faced with. Feeling sadness or anger will not create a solution, but it will drain your energy and so make life harder.

Of course before we become vampire slayers we need to carefully reflect.  Are we infected ourselves ?  If so we have to work harder to create meaningful, positive goals and cultivate inner calm.  The good news is that if you recognise a tendency to be emotionally needy in yourself you can do something about it before you stop showing up in the mirror.

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