Compromising on my wellbeing for others


I’m a very empathetic person who often will compromise on my wellbeing and priorities when hearing from someone who is in pain or having troubles. I might try setting up healthy boundaries for days but, when being affected by my compassion toward someone, I might instantly forget about that and make sacrifices that can be quite damaging for my own well-being. It’s probably because I’m treating everyone like a baby who needs to be nurtured by me. In other words, I’ve been such a fixer in my life. I’ll try to put this into a model below.

C – An acquaintance offers to go for coffee but I know that this relationship is draining me and so I politely refuse but then they tell me about something sad that happened to them lately
T – I immediately start thinking that it’s very upsetting and maybe having coffee with them could help them in this uneasy period
F – Feel bad for them and little guilty about refusing to go for coffee
A – Keep rethinking the situation in my head not able to continue with my day
R – In all that thinking starting to step away from my other priorities

So this is how my compassion takes over my priorities and makes me prioritize others at my expense and it feels very bad. Sometimes it can happen that I’ll sleep very poorly thinking about all the unfortunate stories I’m being told by others. Specially if it happens close to the bedtime. And thus I’d love some support around thinking that disempowering above thought. Could you advise why I would completely forget myself and reject my needs when seeing others in pain? And how I could work on this in order to change this pattern?