Let me introduce you to a little term called “Energy Vamps”. That’s short for energy vampire. Heard of it? These are people who don’t respect personal boundaries and literally suck your energy dry.
In fact, you may know an energy vamp quite well. This person may be wonderful, and you may actually like them in theory, but their energy makes you want to run. They enter your office for a quick chat, and the minute they leave you feel as though you’ve just been put through the ringer and energetically slimed by their mere presence. Ugh. In fact, the minute you sense this person coming toward you, you get an overwhelming feeling of “Oh God, I need to get the hell out of here!” Let’s make matters worse. This person might be your boss, one of your employees or a project team member you work with every day.
Here’s the deal: Businesses of every size have energy vamps. I know you don’t want to hear this, but you yourself are at times the vampire. Yes, there are times you haven’t respected boundaries and have sucked other people’s energy dry. Don’t worry, you’re most likely not doing this consciously. That being said, energy vampires are everywhere. The vampire syndrome is on the rise. We’re in a human energy crisis, and people are desperate for healthy energy regardless of how they get it. And until everyone in your business understands the concept of energy vampires, and is able to create healthy boundaries and reclaim their personal power, these vamps will continue to clog your business culture with energetic disease. Here are a few examples of how energy vampires show up in business.
The Victim constantly shows up to share with you every detail about how he has been “wronged.” The Victim of course is never responsible for any problems he has experienced. And, in a very clever way, the Victim is somehow able to squeeze in his statements of victimhood during every conversation you have, no matter how short. In the meantime, he just happens to suck your energy for an added boost to his energy. He always feels so much better after talking to you, and you always feel completely drained.
The Cynic is not the colleague who’s great at playing the devil’s advocate, though this can be a grey area if you’re not careful. The Cynic shows up to shower everyone with negativity as a means to share with the rest of the world how dark her part of the world feels. Oftentimes, the Cynic is going through troublesome times personally. A dark cloud seems to be following her throughout the day, and she chooses, consciously or not, to rain on the parade of anyone with different ideas and perspectives as a means to shed her feelings of internal bewilderment. At the end of the conversation, the Cynic feels better because she added “value” to the team, while the rest of the team feels exhausted.
The Power Monger
You’re in a good mood and the Power Monger sucks your energy just because he can. And you let him. Sometimes this person has perceived power over you, such as a title, and sometimes this person is a part-time Joe who just shows up in your office. This may be the person who always seems pleasant. In fact, after every conversation you have with him, you can’t figure out why you’re so exhausted. What has happened is he has energetically hooked into your energy and taken it. Little too “New Age” for you? Ask yourself why you’re so drained the next time “Mary Poppins” swings by.
Regardless of how energy vampires show up at your business, the remedy is awareness and setting boundaries. Consciously make the choice to not take other people’s good energy for your own personal use—it’s disrespectful. A great first step in reviving the energy in your business is to share this information with everyone. I guarantee you’ll feel a positive difference. Test it. Once people understand what an energy vampire is, no one will want to be one.
Gina Soleil, is a speaker and acclaimed author of Fuel Your Business: How to energize people, ignite action and drive profit. She blogs and speaks about how to create a business where people are energized, feel good and are happy.Visit Gina Soleil and follow her on Twitter.