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Empaths, Intuitives, Psychics, and Mediums Oh My! Guide To Choosing The Right One For You!

Thursday, March 02, 2023

Primary Blog/Coaching/Empaths, Intuitives, Psychics, and Mediums Oh My! Guide To Choosing The Right One For You!

If you’ve found yourself asking questions like “What is or what does an empath do?” or “Isn’t an intuitive and a psychic the same?” this post is for you!

In our present-day where all things are moving at the speed of light with sophisticated technological advancement, it’s important to know that even that which is supernatural, metaphysical, spiritual, and at the core of each of us is in many ways growing and advancing too! Once upon a time, you may have known someone (or even been that someone!) that visited a psychic, and in the early 90’s it was quite clear what one may expect. Oh, how times have changed! Now you may know a healer, astrologer, psychic, psychic medium, intuitive, empath, medium, guru, yogi, the list can go on when we are talking about those who use their innate and developed gifts to assist and guide others to their truths, and they can all be the same individual!

Today I would like to share clarity around some of the many terms used in reference to the Healing and Intuitive Arts such as Empath, Intuitive, Psychic, and Medium, so that when you are sailing the seas of the psyche, emotion, connection to departed loved ones and soul guidance you know which captain can guide the ship in your desired direction.

My Quick Notes

  • ​HSP (Highly Sensitive Person)
  • ​Empath
  • ​Intuitive
  • ​Medium
  • ​Psychic

Imagine holding one of those old wooden nesting dolls, and we open the top half of each one until we get to the very inner part, a tiny little solid doll.

At its core is the HSP (Highly Sensitive Person). This is a person who has their internal dials turned up to full and is commonly known for feeling overwhelmed and often enough not know why. They are your introverted friends who stay in on Friday nights because crowds and parties are like sensory overload for them. If something feels heavy or too intense they may want to leave and later need space, solitude, and silence to recharge. The innermost nesting doll has higher sensitivity of energy in and close to them.

The next layer is the empath, they can like the HSP feel overwhelmed, with higher sensory inputs coming in, and yet their field of sensory is larger, now they can feel other’s senses too, to include situations, places, and more! If lacking boundaries absorb the energies as their own. They make wonderful listeners and people often feel comfortable spilling their guts to these empathic strangers in line at stores etc.

The intuitive is the 3rd layer, they have learned basic psychic hygiene, have protocols and practices for observing not absorbing, and can begin to transmute energies, alchemizing and harnessing frequencies for better outcomes. Their natural curiosity, lie detecting abilities, and intuitive dreams are major trademarks.

The medium, which can also be psychic isn’t always, so for that reason I place them in the 4th nesting doll slot. And not all psychics are mediums just to be clear (as I explore below). They have a signal and channel related directly to those who are in Spirit or passed on from this life. That frequency can come in on one channel or if they have a larger signal perhaps multiple.

The psychic, the 5th nesting doll has a larger range of signal and frequency, the energy streams can come in on their own channels! They may or may not have precognition, prophetic dreams, and knowings.

To get into a little more detail…


noun: empath; plural noun: empaths

(chiefly in science fiction) a person with the paranormal ability to apprehend the mental or emotional state of another individual.

According to Dr.Judith Orloff, MD, from her book “The Empath’s Survival Guide- Life Strategies for Sensitive People” there are 10 kinds of empaths! Not only can a person be only one channel of empath but the reverse is true as well, you may in fact have multiple open channels of empathy active. One of Judith’s most scientific explanations of empaths is that their brains have more mirror neurons which produce deeper empathy to keep it simple.

Some of the types of empaths here…

  • Physical Empath- Can consciously or unconsciously tap into and even take on physical symptoms of others around them, especially if that person is having a very strong challenge or condition.
  • Emotional Empath- Just like with physical it can be done consciously or unconsciously, like an emotional sponge, an empath without conscious boundaries can absorb the emotional feelings of another.

This Occurs Frequently When an Empathic Person

  • Feels a great need, such as a loved one experiencing pain/sadness/anger, etc. which creates a sense of urgency and desire to support or help.
  • ​ When an empath feels unsafe, many of us empaths, healers, intuitives, and mediums channels or abilities were opened out of necessity for safety. It is not a coincidence that many in the healing arts and intuitive arts have needed or need to learn boundaries, managing excessive empathy, and even manage or hopefully overcome co-dependency.
  • Intuitive or Mental Empath- This is essentially a mind reader, the ability to hear another’s thoughts, via telepathy, it is also not limited to this as a mental empath can take on a style of thinking which is not organically their own! Have you ever been around a specific family member and notice yourself becoming more negative, perhaps even more narrow-minded than usual, or like you are temporarily disconnected from your typical hopefulness or being more solution-minded? The reverse is true too, you might be in a group of highly conscientious empaths (Like in a healing/holistic circle) and find yourself able to be more solution-oriented, positive, able to process things more clearly and efficiently, or hopeful for example.

Dr. Judith wrote a wonderful book and if you know this to be part of your being I highly recommend this and many of her other works!


adjective: intuitive

1. using or based on what one feels to be true even without conscious reasoning; instinctive.

2. “I had an intuitive conviction that there was something unsound in him”

3. synonyms: instinctive, instinctual; More

(chiefly of computer software) easy to use and understand.

In my Developing Intuition course, I explore intuition in good depth, as well as give exercises and support on how to further open and develop your own intuition. I cover the 5 types of Intuitives and yes, just like empaths, intuitives can have more than one kind of intuition or only have one channel open. Intuition is fascinating, and there is a lot of overlap between intuitive and empaths as well as mediums. One can be an intuitive and not a medium, and one can be an intuitive medium, what makes the difference? It’s the energetic channels and how they are accessed. Where I feel the biggest discernment is with intuitives is that they are more inclined to make decisions and choices based on their intuitions, and intuition is generally more oriented to living life in the moment and day to day decision making. It doesn’t arrive out of a moment of high need or intensity, it comes in and out more subtly such as knowing which avocado to choose at the grocery store by feeling a gentle pull towards it. Yes, like empaths intuition can come out of times of higher perceived need, but it isn’t the common pattern from my personal experience, it’s more like a set of lenses through which information is processed.


adjective: psychic

1. relating to or denoting faculties or phenomena that are apparently inexplicable by natural laws, especially involving telepathy or clairvoyance.
2. “psychic powers”
3. synonyms: supernatural, paranormal, otherworldly, supernormal, preternatural, metaphysical, extrasensory, magic, magical, mystical, mystic, occult More

(of a person) appearing or considered to have powers of telepathy or clairvoyance.”I could sense it—I must be psychic”

1. relating to the soul or mind.
2. “he dulled his psychic pain with gin”
3. synonyms: emotional, spiritual, inner; More
4. antonyms: physical

2.denoting a bid that deliberately misrepresents the bidder’s hand, in order to mislead the opponents.

noun: psychic; plural noun: psychics

1. a person considered or claiming to have psychic powers; a medium.
2.synonyms: clairvoyant, fortune teller, crystal gazer; More
3. the study of psychic phenomena.

noun: psychics

It is a large array of senses and abilities being used in my opinion and beginning to untangle this ball can be really tricky to navigate. Where I make the distinction personally is that a psychic more so than others can predict, see threads of destiny based on the impressions they receive. A psychic much like an empath can work with the senses, such as they may receive messages via, sight, hearing, smell, physical sensation, emotional sensation, mental knowing. All of these senses can be intrinsic, or extrinsic, which is something I teach my mediumship students, as in mediumship it becomes more important and helpful to navigate when reading for the sitter. I will explore this more on the blog in the future.


noun: medium; plural noun: media; plural noun: mediums

1. an agency or means of doing something.
2. “using the latest technology as a medium for job creation”
3.synonyms: means, method, way, form, agency, avenue, channel, vehicle, organ, instrument, mechanism
4. “using technology as a medium for job creation”
-a means by which something is communicated or expressed.
-“here the Welsh language is the medium of instruction”
-synonyms: means, method, way, form, agency, avenue, channel, vehicle, organ, instrument, mechanism
-“using technology as a medium for job creation”


1. the intervening substance through which impressions are conveyed to the senses or a force acts on objects at a distance.

2. “radio communication needs no physical medium between the two stations”
_.the substance in which an organism lives or is cultured.
_“grow bacteria in a nutrient-rich medium”
_synonyms: habitat, element, environment, surroundings, milieu, setting, conditions
_“organisms growing in their natural medium”

1. a particular form of storage for digitized information, such as magnetic tape or discs.
2. “moving or copying backed-up data through a hierarchy of different mediums”

1. a liquid (e.g., oil or water) with which pigments are mixed to make paint.
2. synonyms: habitat, element, environment, surroundings, milieu, setting, conditions

“organisms growing in their natural medium”

1. the material or form used by an artist, composer, or writer.”oil paint is the most popular medium for glazing”

1. a person claiming to be in contact with the spirits of the dead and to communicate between the dead and the living.
2. synonyms: spiritualist, spiritist, necromancer, channeler; More

1.the middle quality or state between two extremes; a reasonable balance.
2.“you have to strike a happy medium between looking like royalty and looking like a housewife”
3. synonyms: middle way, middle course, middle ground, middle, mean, median, midpoint; More

adjective: medium

1. about halfway between two extremes of size or another quality; average.
2. "John is six feet tall, of medium build”
3. synonyms: average, middling, medium-sized, middle-sized, midsize, moderate, normal, standard
4. “medium height”
5. (of cooked meat) halfway between rare and well-done.

-“I wanted my burger to be medium”

There are the breakdowns of the terms from Wiki, so what can each one do?? Truth be told the lines and limits are a blur these days, you may meet an individual who goes by one label yet doesn’t like being referred to as another for various reasons. A person may call themselves an Intuitive but not a psychic for example and yet still have clairvoyance abilities, what makes the distinction? I wish there were a more straightforward answer! Now you can meet an empathic psychic, or an intuitive medium for services, its clear to see why this can be confusing quickly.

When it comes to abilities there are no thick black lines and set rules. So I navigate the intuitive seas as such!

When looking to connect with a loved one, I seek a Medium, for me, a medium is that individual that has one foot in the spirit world and the other in the here and now with their client. That being said, a Medium MAY OR MAY NOT connect their client to their loved ones via Clairvoyance, Clair-audience, Claircognizance, Clair Sentience, Clairgustance, etc, by now I know some of you may be saying, wait, back up! I yield! Let me know if you would like to know more to help make this clearer, sad pun intended 😉The clairs are wonderful and fun, fascinating and awe-some to explore!

Any person can have access to any and all or no Clair abilities and a mix in between, some individuals I know use their abilities for specific types of readings, for example, when I facilitate mediumship, often I have more clairs that come into the reading such as clairsalience, if a loved one wore a specific scent of perfume or had a favorite flower it can often end up in the reading.

However, just because I have that clair doesn’t mean that I

1) Always have access to it and
2) Use it in every spiritual/healing/intuitive art practice or reading I work with.

For whatever reason, it seems to be most attached to mediumship for me personally. The type of services a practitioner will offer is closely linked to their abilities however not always defined by them!

So how do we find the right practitioner for the goal? Ask questions! Get to know various practitioners, ask them about how their services, readings, and abilities work and you will unlock a deep relationship with them but also a clearer understanding of how they can sail the boat for your next adventure!

Sometimes those kinds of conversations can be hard to have, you may find yourself to be more of an observational type of person, this too can be a BIG clue as to what a professional’s gifts are, you may notice they make their choices based on feeling or hear them using logic. So it may be that the medium you’ve chosen to work with also is a psychic and can give predictions on what energies are coming forward for your unique path in the next few months or even years!

Here are some of my personal preferences….

When looking for a holistic practitioner with the purpose of healing, an empath can make a wonderful healer, frequently in modalities like therapy, massage, reiki, bodywork types of sessions, because they can deeply feel into your experience they can aid you to become more aware of your feelings and needs to process them in a more conscious and helpful way.

When you desire to make big changes, I suggest an intuitive, many intuitives are drawn to coaching and naturally gifted in guiding others. They are frequently curious and will ask those questions that you need for greater clarity! Their internal gauges and haunches can be borrowed for the duration of your session and they will give insights that work that you otherwise likely wouldn’t have even thought of!

A psychic can give insights that are outside of your being and access, such as picking up vibrations and threads of energy that are coming from others like loved ones, co-workers, bosses, having a glimpse into their needs and desires even goals, they can track into a greater area beyond the client and see where the energies intersect then advise on good navigation strategies. Psychics can tap into the energetic fields of a situation, place, history, and patterns. They are often great with working with many oracles and tools such as Tarot, Runes, Dowsing, but these certainly aren’t required.

Which one am I? It’s like the butterfly entering a cocoon, I have evolved, grown, and mastered my interpretation and management of energy over the decades. I was most certainly a HSP as a toddler, around 5-6 years old more empathic, and having mediumship experiences. Around 9 I entered into the realms of psychic albeit with little conscious understanding or ability to navigate. In my 20’s I entered a more empowered understanding and sought to manage with holistic modalities, thus I was a reader, medium, and healer all before 30. Now I guide others to know, heal, grow, and master their own energetic systems. If the desire wasn’t there, I easily could have remained highly sensitive, but alas it’s my passion and purpose to be of service. Now as a clinical hypnotherapist my skills and senses are fully integrated into my client sessions and we explore vastly my client’s essence, history, and potential futures. I don’t feel that I am that last nesting doll, there is always more room to learn and grow.

If you resonate with what I have shared but long for a better understanding of these energy dynamics within your own system I can happily help and guide you to discern where you fit, and how to better navigate!

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Hi, I Am Amanda M Dodd

CEO Of Healing Beyond Trauma
Transpersonal Clinical Hypnotherapy & Coaching

Here's where I can let you into my world a bit more, some of my musings, inspirations, discoveries, events, and what I'm up to!

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