Being (high) sensitive is nothing to be ashamed of. It is a character trait that you are born with. And 15-20% of mankind shares this flamboyant characteristic with you.
Today, I will introduce you to the 3 groups most (high) sensitive people belong to at some point in their lives.
Since I started to raise awareness for (high) sensitivity and it’s qualities and pitfalls I noticed two common reaction among people. One is the pleasant surprise when they recognized that someone they know falls into this category. The other reaction is by people who find out that they themselves are (high) sensitive; they often get slightly confused, not quite knowing what to do with the newly acquired insight.
Consequently I am being asked questions as diverse as ‘Where do I go from here’ to ‘I realize that my friend is (high) sensitive. How do I help him to realize that an (high) sensitive person’s life does not need to be a struggle?’
The 3 groups I’m going to talk about have flowing transitions. It is possible that you, for example, normally belong to group 2 but experience drop-backs to group 3. Or vice versa. That is all part of the dynamic of life and should not discourage you too much.
- (High) sensitive people who are aware of their (high) sensitivity and accept it.
- They often are pioneers or innovators who value quality of life over maximum income.
- They consider their high sensitivity as a gift and have learned to cope with the uncomfortable sides of it.
- People who have found their own way in life.
- They might not like to directly call themselves ‘high sensitive’. This might be because (high) sensitivity has always been an integral part of their life, or because they have already managed to integrate already in the past.
- These persons can be role models for other (high) sensitives of what is possible to achieve.
- People belonging to this group are in an ‘intermitted’ stage between groups 1 and 3. They know found out recently that they are (high) sensitive
- They just start to understand how they have always forced themselves to perform exactly the same as less sensitive people.
- Their self-image may falter, and they might have to learn to adjust their working routine or place to the newly gained insights.
- They might have the feeling of losing their familiar, secure frame of life and of feeling not very useful.
- They might have succeeded already in building up effective strategies in their lives to help them keep their energy up.
- They benefit strongly from coaching to help them adjust, find a new balance and a new kind of self-esteem.
- If they find and implement a lifestyle that suits them, they shift to group 1.
- Members of this group experience mainly the challenging aspects of (high) sensitivity.
- They have not yet discovered the advantages and qualities of (high) sensitivity.
- They might feel they are victims of their own nature; angry that they gain little understanding.
- They might try various types of medications and therapies to ‘fit in’ and become ‘more normal’. But with (high) sensitivity this will not work.
- Includes people in mental care because they not know that (high) sensitivity is the reason that they feel misunderstood.
- People in this group may evoke resistance from aid workers because they perceive (high) sensitive characteristics as an additional constraint.
- By denying high sensitivity or being unaware of it, aid workers may confirm the negative self-image that (high) sensitive persons have developed. The (high) sensitive person thus will never get ‘better’ because they do not learn how to be themselves. Their “self” is not recognized, nor by themselves nor by the aid workers they turn to.
- If members of this group learn about the concept of (high) sensitivity and start to get to know themselves in a fresh light, they may move to group 2.
I’ll adress group 3 the next blog article ‘3 simple tips to increase your self-confidence after you found out you are (high) sensitive’. Online October 26th.
I hope that you got some eye-openers reading this article. Please don’t hesitate to contact me for advice or any questions that you have now.
For hands-on practical group training, go to my website for the data.
Rests me to wish you lots of insights and success on your journey!
I am really excited to hear about your experiences so please let me know by sending me an email or leave a comment below.
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Anke Weber Smit, P.h.D. is an passionate coach and approved healer with nearly 10 years of professional experience working with children, teens, adults, and companies. Anke’s mission is helping people with recondition the past and creating their future lifes. She has experience with treating (high) sensitivity issues, eating disorders, body image, relationships with others or with yourself, psychological abuse and anxiety. Anke is a honest, warm inspirational counselor, author and speaker who uses professional expertise, humor and personal recovery to help others to help themselves. For more information on her services, please follow Anke’s blog or visit her on www.cocreate.com (English) or www.ankewebersmit.com (Dutch)
Image credits 1, 2, 3