Hi, I found this website in a search for stress management techniques. So I thought I would share. I have summarized (with excerpts from different websites) below for those who do not wish to search for it.
A highly sensitive person (HSP) is a person having the innate trait of high psychological sensitivity (or innate sensitiveness as Carl Jung originally coined it). According to Elaine N. Aron and colleagues as well as other researchers, highly sensitive people, who comprise about a fifth of the population, may process sensory data much more deeply and thoroughly due to a biological difference in their nervous systems.
Your trait is normal. It is found in 15 to 20% of the population–too many to be a disorder, but not enough to be well understood by the majority of those around you.
It is innate. In fact, biologists have found it to be in most or all animals, from fruit flies and fish to dogs, cats, horses, and primates. This trait reflects a certain type of survival strategy, being observant before acting. The brains of highly sensitive persons (HSPs) actually work a little differently than others’.
You are more aware than others of subtleties. This is mainly because your brain processes information and reflects on it more deeply. So even if you wear glasses, for example, you see more than others by noticing more.
You are also more easily overwhelmed. If you notice everything, you are naturally going to be overstimulated when things are too intense, complex, chaotic, or novel for a long time.
This trait is not a new discovery, but it has been misunderstood. Because HSPs prefer to look before entering new situations, they are often called “shy.” But shyness is learned, not innate.
In fact, 30% of HSPs are extraverts, although the trait is often mislabeled as introversion. It has also been called inhibitedness, fearfulness, or neuroticism. Some HSPs behave in these ways, but it is not innate to do so and not the basic trait.
Sensitivity is valued differently in different cultures. In cultures where it is not valued, HSPs tend to have low self-esteem. They are told “don’t be so sensitive” so that they feel abnormal.
@tangledupinplaid21, “This definitely explains why it almost physically pains me to hear people complain or talk shit on their friends, and why I need time to think to know whether I liked or disliked a movie and why.”
These are the types of issues I have too that used to me feel weak and dumb until I realized it was actually an effect of some type of “gift” for lack of a better word.
The thing about that really expressive person you were dating- I always seem to gravitate towards the most reactive people! I love their purity but I end up giving so much power away since their intensity amplifies my sensitivity so much. I’ve recently started to keep control of my anxiety in dealing with them bc I felt like i was abusing myself, but it’s a challenge.
@anjelica, yeah, that relationship didn’t end up working out. We broke up a year ago. Now I’m dating someone a lot more like me, sensitive and artsy. :) It saves a lot of time explaining things. I felt like my ex and I spoke different languages a lot of the time.
immobilizing … thats what id say . you feel a dirty butterfly feeling. but its not a nice one . its like an empty hole in your stomach and your body numbs out . its terrbile. i know how everyone feels here for sure… but extra sensitive. means extra empathic and sympathetic as well. we care more or feel more for everything in general. maybe our 20% should shed some light to the 80% that we arent extra sensitive but that maybe theyre under sensitive ?
there’s a purpose for everything :)
we could also be here for the purpose of learning to feel even more, maybe because we felt very little in the last life ?
I feel like I am one of these types of people as well. Sometimes it feels like i absorb the emotions of others in the room and I can sense how other people are feeling. When i used to smoke a lot of pot this feeling would be amplified. I would even ask other people if they felt the way I thought they did out of curiosity, and I was almost always correct. Like many of you said, this unfortunately leads to increased levels of anxiety and other negative emotions. I also point out subtleties that few other people notice, and I’ve been called out on it many times before.
I’ve found that meditation helps keep me centered when my emotions being to run amok in my head. It’s all about maintaining a calm center when you’re this way.
@neumannr, its true , ive read around about empaths , they take on the emotions of others around them without realizing it.
feeling low and wondering why?
check who’s around you , or in the room beside you and see what they’re feeling.
your depression could be theirs:P
Are you guys saying that its not typical to be affected by someone else’s mood? Like non-sensitive people stay happy if they go into a situation feeling happy even if their friend is in a terrible mood? I feel like its definitely normal to pick up on other peoples emotions and reflect them.
What if HSP’s and empaths can feel other’s emotions greatly (&thoughts) because they can easily influence them?
I know this sounds crazy, but think about this:
I’ve noticed that I have a lot of influence on other people’s emotions.
I can control a room’s vibe, just by controlling mine. (or it seems, coincidently)
Sometimes certain people will begin to react like me, if i’m strongly feeling something in myself.
One time, when i was just discovering ‘vibes’ lol, sitting in a room with my friends meditating deeply, I wanted my friends to resonate with me.My friends who are ignorant of anything of that nature, started to behave differently. When I opened my eyes, I saw the color of the room intensify. Everything felt so amazing! Keep in mind, I was completely sober.
Everyone started to move around the room so effortlessly and then suddenly two of my more intelligent friends, who had no experience with art, began to draw on this one girl.
I could FEEL the symbols, a new emotion with each drawing i witnessed.
Maybe i’m just crazy, and schizo, who knows. I know i don’t.
Would like to know what you guys think, of that.
@brittanyrenee, that sounds really cool! I’ve had similar experiences. I definitely notice that I rub off on people a lot when I’m feeling things strongly, and seem to have a good amount of influence on most people, especially those who are a little younger than me(23).
I’ve been sitting in a room with my dog meditating and she lays down and her breath gets looooong and slow just like mine, I’ll see if it happens with people too. :P