Highly Sensitive Persons (HSPs)
“Sometimes I think, I need a spare heart to feel all the things I feel.”
What it means to be a Highly Sensitive Person
Have you ever been told that you’re “too sensitive”? Do you often feel anxious or exhausted? Would you consider yourself highly emotional, intuitive, or easily overwhelmed? Do you have a sense of increased empathy for others? Do you often need alone time or cry easily? Do you feel overwhelmed when there is too much going on?
Highly Sensitive Persons react more intensely to experiences than the average person. They process both positive and negative information more deeply, so they can easily become overwhelmed by stimuli like loud noises, crowds, and high-pressure situations.
Characteristics of a Highly Sensitive Person
You feel easily flustered and overwhelmed in every area of your life. This could show up as general anxiety, depression, chronic digestive issues, exhaustion, poor concentration or lowered immune functioning. Even pleasant experiences can be stressful such as transitioning into a new relationship or living situation.
Sensitive people are often deeply spiritual and feel connected to nature and animals.
Caring, empathetic and emotionally responsive towards the needs of others.
May feel an abundance of joy and excitement and can be equally overcome by sadness or disappointment, as well as picking up on the emotions of others.
Shyness or social anxiety, mostly due to the intensity of large gatherings, can be a problem. HSPs typically enjoy one-on-one interactions and prefer meaningful connections.
Setting boundaries and dealing with conflict is often uncomfortable. Due to a high capacity for empathy, HSPs often feel guilt for saying “no” and are worried about hurting others.
Loneliness can be a struggle for sensitive types. A common experience is feeling misunderstood or different from family and peers, which can lead to low-esteem and contribute to feelings related to depression.
Feeling unfulfilled, overstimulated or burned out at work is a huge challenge for HSPs and can contribute to multiple career changes.
While being a HSP can be challenging at times, there is also incredible strength and empowerment to being highly sensitive such as feeling the depth of experiences and a strong self awaresnes. If you identify with being a HSP and would like to explore who you are with self compassion and deepen your understanding of this, working with a therapist who understands HSPs can be highly empowering. I can help support you and your growth in therapy.