Our sensitivity refers to our capacity to respond to stimulation. Everyone has a sensitive side however some of us may respond to stimuli more intensely than others.
That’s the case with highly sensitive people (HSPs) who undergo a heightened physiological experience of stimuli resulting from increased neuronal sensitivities.
In other words, HSPs indicate a heightened ability to respond to internal and external stimuli (emotional, social, physical…) due to an increased central nervous system sensitivity. Although these particularities are thought to be innate, they may be intensified through childhood wounds or trauma.
Have you ever been told that you are too sensitive, that you think too much or maybe that you are too intense? Do you sometimes find it challenging to process the intensity of your emotions?
Experiencing the world with a heightened sensitivity comes with its gifts and challenges.
HSPs process information on a deep and intense level, which can make them quite gifted - but it also means that they consume a lot of mental energy.
Lack of Mental Energy
HSPs experience extremely complex emotions - both positive and negative, which usually lead them to develop a rich inner life. When they feel deeply, they also tend to think quite intensely because they want to make sense of their emotions on a mental level so they can process them and move on.
However when stress and emotional tension are added to the equation the interpretation of these feelings and emotions can become more difficult. The practice of self reflection and development of self awareness may then easily turn into self criticism and ruminating thoughts. > More on how to process your emotions differently HERE.
Processing information on a deep level also means that HSPs tend to explore multiple angles and try to connect ideas to a bigger picture. They will want to analyse and consider all options available to them which tend to lengthen their decision making process (especially in our modern society where information is everywhere).
Adding some perfectionism and self doubt to the overall thinking process can become mentally exhausting.
> Attention to detail, analytical skills and a vivid curiosity; HSPs may want to direct some of this energy towards self chosen goals such as reading, learning new things… while setting realistic expectations so they can stimulate their intellectual needs in a structured and healthy way.
> Keeping their emotions in check, making sure to regularly release energy blocks and practice grounding practices (such as meditation, breathwork, yoga, walking in nature…) will also support them in maintaining a greater mental energy.
Absorbing everyone’s energy and emotions
HSPs have very active neuron mirrors which allow them to learn through imitating but also to understand what others are experiencing and therefore develop profound compassion, and empathy. They may even find it hard to make a distinction between their own and others feelings and have a tendency to put these feelings above their own needs.
Learning through imitating and being acutely aware of others’ feelings along with their own often have them develop really high expectations for themselves especially if this pattern was reinforced through childhood experiences.
They may have deep concerns about their behaviour in relationships and the well-being of people important to them. They can also be very self-critical and experience feelings of inadequacy and inferiority.
HSPs can physically sense the energy around them which may feel quite invasive and draining energetically.
Eg. If someone is having an outburst of anger, the HSP may take on the lower frequency energies as their own and find it quite overwhelming.
> HSPs will want to preserve their environment (have their safe space) and learn to protect their energy so they don’t unwillingly start carrying everyone else’s (visualise a protective shield of light all around them before entering a crowded place…).
> They may use their gift to their advantage and develop their abilities (eg. Use your Emotional Intelligence in your workplace or enhance your energetic and spiritual capacities)
> Tune in to nourishing energies as often as possible to recharge (connect authentically with people that make them feel good, take in the blissful feeling of watching a beautiful sunset, do what you love and do it often !
> Establish clear boundaries verbally, physically, emotionally, energetically… They will need to determine their needs and start prioritising them more so they don’t disperse their energy and give away their power.
Unprocessed emotions manifest physically
In every situation we experience, we have a mental reaction, an emotional reaction and a physical reaction. We’ve seen that the heightened physiological response that HSPs experience may also lead to intense emotional and mental reactions.
We’ve now scientifically established the body-mind connection and we understand how intense or repressed emotions may create psychosomatic reactions. As an example, we see a very close relationship between the way we digest thoughts and emotions with the way we digest our food.
HSPs may be subject to digestive issues, flushed skin, chronic fatigue, shoulder pain, back pain, thyroid issues and more when holding on to emotional toxicity or not releasing trapped emotions.
> As much as repressed emotions can cause problems on a physical level, they may support themselves emotionally by concentrating on the physical level. Have a healthy anti-inflammatory diet and make sleep a priority
> Releasing tension through mouvement (yoga, trauma release exercises, having regular Reiki sessions, dancing...). Creating an unbreakable self care routine is key to stabilizing their nervous system.
Do you want to know more about how you may direct the energy of your overactive mind and sensitivity towards success? Join our upcoming workshop
That’s also a good way for me to note the topics which my audience find more interesting so I can adapt to their needs and wants.