Highly Sensitive People

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  • Surviving the Holidays

    Posted by Joyce on 12/23/2022 at 5:44 pm

    Hustle and Bustle and People, Oh MY!
    I’m interested in how other HSPs cope with all the overstimulation and emotions during the holidays. There are parties and expectations and lots and lots of lights and sounds. It can really be a lot! And then there are the emotions that are part and parcel of the season.

    I’d love to hear what you all do to keep yourselves sane at this time of year!

    John replied 1 month, 1 week ago 2 Members · 4 Replies
  • 4 Replies
  • Joyce

    12/23/2022 at 6:05 pm

    As a person who gets overwhelmed by expectations (whether outside or internal) I’ve found meditation to be extremely helpful. The next step is, of course, recognizing when I’m in that spiral and need to stop, breathe and clear my mind. It’s a work in progress.

    My other coping mechanisms are listening to music and making lists, lots of lists! They help me get the swirling thoughts out of my head and down in a visual format which eases the overwhelm. I did it this morning and the relief was almost instantaneous!

  • John

    12/29/2022 at 11:11 am

    Good topic Joyce. There are several things that help me:

    1. A sugar free diet. Perhaps not for everyone, but having eliminated sugar from my life, I don’t experience the mental and emotional roller coasters that I used to. I have been doing Dr. Berg’s “healthy keto” for years. He has lots of videos on YouTube.

    2. An understanding of “reactivity” as a trait of high sensitivity. This may be a life-long learning process. As with other HSP terms and topics, I think it’s important to find out what this term really refers to and not just take the term to mean as it applies to the general population.

    3. Permission to do it differently. One of the most profound things about really understanding high sensitivity as a branch of evolution is that we are wired to do life differently. Our job is not to struggle to trying be like the other 70% of the population.

    4. An understanding of neurotransmitters and high sensitivity. My theory is that, as a highly sensitive person, I burn through neurotransmitters more quickly because of the heightened processing in the insular cortex. Since neurotransmitters run out and have to be replenished, it makes sense that we will get fatigued more quickly in high stimulation environments (like holiday parties).

    5. Connecting with safe people. I had the pleasure of spending some time on Christmas Day with a brand new acquaintance who is highly sensitive, and it turns out gifted as well. The time was healing for me. Dr. Aaron has talked about the importance of spending time with other highly sensitive people. I’m becoming a big proponent of this. All my life, I’ve been looking for my “tribe” and that tribe seems to be highly sensitive people and gifted individuals.

    • John

      12/29/2022 at 11:38 am

      I forgot to mention:

      6. Overwhelm: another trait of high sensitivity. One of the reasons I’ve been working on creating the high sensitivity and neurotransmitters course is because there is a **significant** correlation between neurotransmitter production and overwhelm. I don’t think anybody understands this or has studied it yet. The course gets into it though.

      • John

        12/29/2022 at 11:51 am

        Darn, I’m noticing a bug with editing posts so I’ll have to add this as a reply until I get that fixed.

        A practical part of managing overwhelm as an HSP is having the option to spend less time at parties or with others and not feel guilty about doing so. It can be a real balancing act in terms of getting one’s need to for connection met vs one’s time to rest and recharge….