My whole life I've naturally been an analyzer. Due to the whole empath thing, I can read people's energies. The older I get, the easier it becomes and the more noticeable. I can tell when something irritates you or makes you angry, or if something makes you happy or sad. Naturally, that means I can tell how you respond to certain things I say or how certain words, thoughts, or phrases trigger you.
For example, if I come up to you and begin discussing how I'm an empath and you think I'm crazy, I can tell you think I'm crazy. I don't need to be looking at your face to know it hit you a weird way. I can just feel it.
This also means I naturally absorb energies and feel them as if they were my own. If I'm talking to you about something and I can tell you're disinterested or distracted, I become distracted and have to overcompensate for the both of us and find a way to force myself to focus, sometimes making me come across as overly forward or talkative. If you're tired, I become tired and tend to avoid eye contact. With a lifetime of practice, it's become easy to switch back and forth, but it's exhausting.
Imagine not only constantly dealing with your own emotions and energy but attempting to balance your own while being able to feel the energy of everyone around you. Due to this, I'm very particular about the type of people I can surround myself with because if their energies don't match my own or I feel as if we're on "different wavelengths," friendships can become more exhausting than fun.
Often, this means I keep my distance from people, which in all honesty, kind of stinks sometimes, but if I'm around people too often, I'm emotionally and physically drained, and struggle to focus on my own life because I'm constantly analyzing everyone else's.
Empath or not, why does this matter? Even if you can't feel the energies of the people you surround yourself with or notice their emotions, pay attention to who you choose to spend your time with. Whether or not you can tell those energies exist, they do exist, and sometimes you could be hanging out with someone who is more of a detriment to you than a benefit.
If you walk away from a night out with friends, exhausted, not because of the activity or because of a lack of sleep, but because you just feel emotionally drained from being out with them, take a step back and ask yourself why.
Relationships do require work, but they shouldn't be a chore. Surround yourself with people who leave you feeling, as Meredith Grey once said, bright and shiny. Or find yourself your Christina Yang if you want someone to match your dark and twisty. Whoever it is, just make sure they're your energy equals, otherwise, your friendships could leave you feeling friendless.