Are you being drained by an energy vampire?

With the end of the financial year only two weeks away, the world of sales has reached peak pressure. There are targets to meet, deals to push across the line, and a raft of competitive tenders to finalise before the looming deadline.

All of this makes for stressed and exhausted people who are hard on themselves, and on each other.

Recently I wrote about how to manage your own energy, when you know it’s you that is the problem.

But what if it’s that other type of hell…..other people?

We all have one: that person we dread spending time with, who seems to suck the life out of us.

Your energy vampire could be a client, your boss, a co-worker, a friend or a family member.

Energy vampires have several things in common. They're constantly complaining, everything's a drama, and they talk incessantly about themselves.

You'll know an energy vampire, because you feel drained after being with them.

And when they lurk where you work, things can get very hard indeed.

Dr Judith Orloff, author of Positive Energy, identifies five types of energy vampires:

1. The Sob Sister – The most common type of energy stealer. Every time you talk to this person, they’re whining. Sob sisters love a captive audience, and are more interested in complaining than solutions.

2.  The Drama Queen – Male or female, the Drama Queen has a knack for exaggerating small incidents into off-the-chart dramas.

3.  The Constant Talker – They’ve mastered the art of circular breathing, and could talk under wet cement. The Constant Talker has no interested in other people’s feelings or opinions, so good luck getting a word in.

4.  The Blamer – This is the kind of person who has a sneaky way of making you feel guilty for not getting things absolutely perfect.

5.  Go For The Jugular Fiend – They’re spiteful and vindictive, and cut you down with no consideration for your feelings. Somehow they make this seem like a virtue, because they’re “just being honest”. (Which, as we know, is the most destructive excuse for giving “feedback”).

Do you recognise someone you know in this list?

At this time of the year, and especially if your own tolerance and patience is starting to wear thin, you’ll find energy vampires even more taxing than usual.

If you really can’t avoid your energy vampire, protect your energy as best you can. Keep your interactions short, set boundaries, and don’t let them draw you into drama.

And remember that their issues are more about them than they are about you.