It’s all about being sensitive on this episode of We Go Boldly as we talk through the idea of what it means to be a highly sensitive person in an overwhelming world. We delve into the definitions of sensitive, insensitive, and highly sensitive as a personality trait as defined by Elaine Aron many years ago. We talk through some of the science behind personality traits and how high sensitivity impacts us as individuals.
The cultural impact of how we view sensitivity as individuals and then as a larger culture come into play as well. We examine how our own bias impacted our research, our responses, and how we went about unravelling that bias as highly sensitive people.
Some of the key benefits to being highly sensitive are increased intuition, creativity, adaptability and capacity for empathy. Highly sensitive people are often more deeply impacted by sensory input. They think and feel deeply, and look for meaning in their lives. Some people believe that highly sensitive individuals tend to seek out more spiritual answers and connections.
On the flip side of that there are some challenges to being sensitive, outside of the typical stereotyping and cultural stigmatization. Highly sensitive people are predisposed to sensory overload and need more time to themselves. They also are more prone to perfectionism, being deeply impacted by conflict, and overwhelmed by the expectations of others. Developing and maintaining healthy boundaries becomes extremely important for people with this personality trait.
For anyone who expresses sensitivity, whether a highly sensitive person or otherwise, society often puts stigma and negative connotations on such expression. We often hear sensitivity equated with weakness or being “too sensitive.” People equate sensitivity in women with hysteria and delicate natures prone to overreacting. All of this is a reaction to discomfort, and not the discomfort of the sensitive person. Rather the discomfort of the reacting individual. Sensitivity is not as taboo as it once was, but we still have a long way to go.
GO BOLDLY HOMEWORK
- Grab your device. Click through this link and take the HSP test: https://hsperson.com/test/highly-sensitive-test/
- Consider all the negative and positive stereotypes around being highly sensitive and take some time to journal about your feelings on these.
- Reach out to your accountability partner and discuss!
- Send us a note on Social Media and let us know your findings.
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