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In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “The Satisfaction of a List.”

too sensitive

Is this you?

  • Are you easily overwhelmed by such things as bright lights, strong smells, coarse fabrics, or sirens nearby?
  • Do you get rattled when you have a lot to do in a short amount of time?
  • Do you make a point of avoiding violent movies and TV shows?
  • Do you need to withdraw during busy days, into bed or a darkened room or some other place where you can have privacy and relief from the situation?
  • Do you make it a high priority to arrange your life to avoid upsetting or overwhelming situations?
  • Do you notice or enjoy delicate or fine scents, tastes, sounds, or works of art?
  • Do you have a rich and complex inner life?
  • When you were a child, did your parents or teachers see you as sensitive or shy?

Taken from: http://hsperson.com by Dr. Elaine Aron; See the rest of the article there

Many of the people who use the word “sensitive” to describe something, or someone, say it with disgust and a lack of patience.  Yet, if it weren’t for the sensitive people, who would respond to those in need? Who would cry at a piece of music? Who could look through a camera and see a masterpiece where others see nothing? Music and art reach deeper into our hearts; lyrics and words have the power to raise our awareness.

Cynicism and a lack of sensitivity are rampant. Messages are impersonal and we seek out the notes with the briefest amount of words.

A highly sensitive person processes the world around her in a layered way; smells are stronger, colors are brighter, sunlight alters mood, and soft and warm translates into cozy and waiting for touch. By the same token, scratchy fabrics irritate us. We need just the right fabrics in cotton or bamboo for a soothing night’s rest.

Sharp and pungent spices are not always satisfactory to a highly sensitive person. They can be off-putting because of the combination of scent and taste. Personally, curry and cumin are too strong for me on both counts.

We cry a lot. People make jokes or suggest you find medication for “happy” pills. There are no pills to cure a sensitivity to the tragedies in the world or news of someone’s death. Tears don’t mean that we are necessarily depressed, but we do feel and process emotions deeply. Goodbyes can be very hard. Sad songs and movies do make me cry, but my mind picks out the lyrics. In movies, I am sensitive to the sounds of accents, great acting, and cinematography. Sometimes, I have to turn off the news or the violent shows. It does not do my sensitive system any good to fill it up with anxiety or nervousness. Soothing sounds or softer lighting add to our wellness. Not all of us are artists, but there are many highly sensitive people who are indeed quite creative.

Sounds that are too loud are harsh to me. I can enjoy everything, but, sometimes, I need to turn down the volume. In a crowded or noisy party, it is helpful to get some fresh air when there are too many wild and crazy revelers. We are sensitive on behalf of others as well. We fight for the underdogs and don’t bully. We don’t tolerate someone else’s bad behavior because we know how it feels to absorb that toxic pain and negativity. Highly sensitive people, like empaths, are experts at nuance in many picayune ways. Details are noticed and appreciated like a finely set table, a beautifully wrapped gift, and fresh flowers. A good cup of coffee, or a freshly baked loaf of bread, can bring pleasure..

Our senses fuel our experiences and aid in our learning about the people and world around us. We don’t always feel like laughing, but when we do, the extroverts among us enjoy a good hearty laugh. We seem to need some scheduled alone time to recalibrate our senses and personal rhythms. No entertainment need be supplied as we enjoy time alone or with a good book. Intelligence and deep discussion are always preferable to the superficial. We can feed our souls with honest and vulnerable conversation. It does not use up our emotional strength because we have more than enough to go around. However, there are people who are toxic and narcissistic. We see through them right away and they suck out the oxygen in our sails when we spend too much time in their company.

An idea, like a sensitivity, can encompass a universe of empathy.  Seeing things through someone else’s eyes can help you to explore your own feelings.  In the silence, we absorb emotions, unspoken words, pain, loss, and that which may elude us in words. The shine in our eyes may be tears, but they can also reflect the sparks of humanity and possibility. We admire integrity and try to behave with only the best of intention in our hearts and hands.

People can insult your sensitivity – that is of course until they need a dose of empathy themselves. Then, look and see who wants to benefit from your sensitivity.  It becomes a choice to protect ourselves as well as someone else. Sensitivity encompasses honor, kindness, respect, compassion, trust, vulnerability, and empathy.  It opens the world around us, and our minds, to include that which others overlook or determinedly choose to ignore.

We appreciate the small and the large gestures that bring light, beauty, and kindness into our lives. We naturally choose filters to soothe our spirits and calm our senses when they become too overheated. Don’t worry about the tears. We are not afraid to use them sincerely, and I promise, you won’t melt.

“DOES (Depth of Processing, Overstimulation, Emotionally responsive/Empathy, and Sensitive to Subtle)”

To take a self test, click here:  http://hsperson.com/test/

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Thank you for stopping by and sharing your sensitivity. I hope that you enjoy your visit.
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3 Comments

  1. Interesting. Wondering what prompted this. =)

    • Thanks for your question. I realized that there are a fair amount of the population who are empathetic, but also sensitive in other ways. So many people have heard a groan and the words “Oh, you are sooo sensitive” in their childhood. IMHO There are so many shades of normal and empathy that deserve more than labels and stigma. 🙂


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