Highly sensitive me

Read in Finnish

I’ll never forget the day when I realized why I am the way I am. At the same time, I realized there are others like me, I wasn’t the only one. I am a Hsp, Highly sensitive person.

It was two years ago. I was doing normal Wednesday evening chores (probably something to do with laundry :D) when my husband came home looking like he’d won the lottery. He made me sit on the couch while going on and on about some documentary we needed to see immediately. What choice did I have but to turn on the tv and try to understand why he was so unbelievably enthusiastic. As he hit play and Sensitive – The Untold Story started, I became even more suspicious. Had I known that in a couple of hours my life would never be the same, I surely would have captured the moment on film.

There are few moments in life so clear and bright as the moment Hsp came into my life. Everything in the documentary fit me like a glove. After turning the tv off in pure disbelief, I spent hours in Google searching as much information of Highly sensitive people as I could, doing Hsp-tests online and ordering Elaine Aaron’s book Highly Sensitive Person from an online book store.

Being highly sensitive isn’t a skill one can learn. It either is in our genetics or isn’t. Most of the population on this Earth are not highly sensitive people, which probably explains why the term hasn’t been around very long. Due to the same reason, I think, Hsp’s are not always understood or are labeled as shy or introverts. A highly sensitive person can be shy or an introvert but it’s not necessarily like that. I have never seen me as shy, only an odd one out and at times an introvert who doesn’t belong anywhere.

IMG_0441As a Hsp, my feelings are STRONG, with capital letters. At times I feel like my reactions, both happy and sad, are a thousand times stronger compared to anyone I know. I feel like spinning in a washing machine or living in a tornado’s eye. Even though being a Hsp is at times irritating, I still love it with all my heart. Luckily the irritation doesn’t stick and it’s actually more like a frustration. I’m frustrated when my reactions to life make new things feel harder and complicate my everyday life. However, in addition to my wonderful family, finding the Hsp in me is the best thing that has ever happened to me.

Not only do I have these oversized feelings to handle, I am a bit (read a lot) overempathetic. 😀 Additionally, I do always take care of my loved ones, sometimes a few drops too much according to my family. Still, isn’t it better to take care too much than too little? I’ll always do everything in my power to make sure people around me are happy and safe. Even to the point, that at times, I forget to take care of myself and drive myself to the limit. I am lucky to have a husband who reminds me to take time for myself and figure out what is best for me.

Feeling that all this is a bit much? Not even close. 😀 I am also overanalyzing and get anxious when it comes to social encounters or situations with a lot of people (whether they are familiar or not). I am not only an introvert though, but a, so called, sensation seeking Hsp. In some situations, I am a total introvert but at times more of an extrovert. In other words, I want to experience as much as I can but get anxious while doing it. My mind is in constant battle with itself. It’s like I have a Donald Duck angel on right shoulder and a Donald Duck devil on the left. If you get the point. A part of me wants to do exiting stuff to challenge myself as the other side of me is screaming ‘you shouln’t do that, are you insane, it’s way too scary, go home and cover yourself with a blanket, there you’ll be safe’. Most of the time my adventure seeking side wins. Consequently, while experiencing the most amazing things life has to offer, I get so anxious that recovery from the experience takes twice as long as the experience itself.

IMG_0461All things considered, I love being a highly sensitive person. Everyday, every minute of my life. Because I am sensitive, I can enjoy life and moments of joy, no matter how big or small they are. I also notice things not everyone notices and thus my world is full of beautiful, wonderful things. Comprehending my sensitivity has helped me to understand my husband better, as well as him to understand me in a new way. That one evening, that one documentary and the journey that followed, have made our relationship stronger and happier than I ever could have wished for.

Since there is so much in being a Hsp, it takes far more than one post to go deep with the subject. In addition to the traits I already mentioned, being a Hsp affects me in many other ways; how I behave after a doze of caffeine, which movies do I enjoy, why do I cry when watching the news, how do I feel when it comes to summer rain, what are my sunrises like and so on.

Sensitivity is a subject I’ll be writing much more about, since it is such a big part of me. Not me, but a part of me. If I am to be truthful to you and myself, it is impossible to leave sensitivity out of the picture. Also coming up my tips and tricks to make the most out of your sensitivity.

Are you a Hsp like me or have anyone in your circle of friends who is one? Let me know what funny or positive traits you’ve found to be linked to highly sensitive people.

 

– Kati

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