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Discovering the concept of high sensitivity and learning you are a Highly Sensitive Person can be a major life moment for some people.
It was for me!
Now that I’ve been living with this knowledge for a few years (and learning more all the time!), I reflected in this episode on some positive realizations I’ve had about myself since learning I’m an HSP.
Making this list felt really good; I hope it may serve as a prompt to consider your own experiences. How has your life changed since learning about HSPs?
Podcast music attribution: Bust This Bust That (Professor Kliq) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0
Great episode, Kelly! One benefit I have gained from understanding my HSP nature (besides the things you mentioned) is understanding why, after a few hours in a very stimulating environment, I can end up exhausted, or with cravings for comfort food, and other “bad” feelings. This used to confuse me, especially when this happened after something that I really enjoyed, like spending time with some of my higher-energy, less-sensitive friends. Now I know that I can have too much of a good thing. I manage my time better and don’t beat myself up for limiting my exposure to stimuli, because that’s part of my self-care.
The other big benefit has been learning how to deal with the fact that some other people’s feelings seem to spew themselves into me. I have learned to distinguish my feelings from theirs, to let theirs leave my body without my taking responsibility for them, while paying attention to my own feelings. I’ve become more able to be with agitated, anxious and angry people without feeling awful myself, and without feeling compelled to calm them down so I can get some peace.
Realized that I could have contributed so much more had I not refused to acknowledge being HSP, and nurtured self accordingly. Much healing needed is one of the costs. Also found out there are groups of happy, functioning, very productive HSPs.
For me, the knowledge about HS was live changing – only two weeks after the day, my former class teacher, who is also an HSP, told me, I decided, that I had to go my own way, to care for myself and that I did’nt have to do what everyone expected. I didn’t have to stay in school to suffer from being bored, to do my Abitur (german a-levels) the ways it was meant to be for years.
I’m so happy to habe changed all these things in my live, that I’m living by myself now, not with my family anymore, that I’m preparing for my exams without school, that I’m doing everything for MYSELF.
I’ve only been aware of this thing called HSP for a little over a year. It has been such an eye opener just like when I discovered years ago after taking the Myers-Briggs that I was an extrovert and my husband and mother were introverts. Knowing these things about me has helped me to accept myself and not think that I am a “bad” person. Knowing I am HSP has helped me realize that I am not a whiny high maintenance hyperchondriac. I have had insomnia my whole life and never realized until recently that I have to do the bedtime prep or I will not be able to sleep. I have to be particularly conscious of not getting into late night discussions with overnight guests or else I’ll be staring at the ceiling all night! My husband now knows that I have to have quiet downtime of reading in bed. The best thing that ever happened was taking the TV out of our bedroom.
I found your podcast by sheer chance and a heavy weight has finally been lifted off my chest. Everything you talk about resonates so deeply with my experiences and I can perhaps dare to stop blaming myself for the way I am. I can never thank you enough.
thank you! I’m so glad it was helpful 🙂
I’ve never heard of an HSP until recently. It’s all starting to make sense to me now. Besides being “too sensitive “, The same cold breeze in the winter that makes someone bitch about it being cold moves me to tears sometimes. I’ve always been particularly moved by scenery, smells, music and other things that seem to do nothing for most other people. I guess I’m an HSP.
Actually discovering I was a HSP really felt like a relief. One of the most amazing things I acquired when I started this journey was the ability to relate more to people, to listen to the various HSP out there. It’s really about not undervaluing me and this great group of people who need compassion the same way you do. I think it’s amazing, makes us more human!