Are You a Highly Sensitive Person?
I was constantly told when I was young, that I was “too sensitive.” I’d hear; “Susan, why are you so sensitive?” My siblings would laugh and giggle. I didn’t find it funny at all. They would actually tease me about it. I never understood why? All I wanted to do was to talk about my feelings. “Why” became a favorite word of mine. I was probably around ten or eleven when it all began. What started when I was young continued into my teen years. What I didn’t know at the time was that I’d come to eventually lose the ability to feel anything. It was better that way. Because my feelings became squashed over and over again, my body learned to shut down completely. Eventually as I entered my twenties no emotion came in or out. I blocked out pain, happiness, and true joy.
I did not get to experience what unconditional love felt like —until I was twenty-three years old and became a mother for the first time. Motherhood became the beginning of healing the child inside of me. As I mothered my first born, I mothered myself. The world became all new again for me. When she looked up at me for the first time and smiled, I melted into tears. Nobody ever looked at me like that. I was her world, and she was mine. Nothing else mattered to me at the time but being a good mother. As time went on, because I was so unsure of mothering and what to do, I did the opposite of what my mother would have done. My first thought was always—what would I have wanted from my own mother when something like this happened—then I would do or say what the little girl inside of me would have wanted to hear. As a mother I became really good at saying, don’t worry, everything will be ok—even if I wasn’t sure that it would be.
That one sentence; Don’t worry, everything will be ok, became my mothering mantra. It was like each and every time I said it, I was telling myself and the little girl inside of me that no matter what happens, I will be ok. I eventually started to believe it and the metamorphosis of my true self began. ( More about that at another time J )
Coined by clinical psychologist Elaine Aron in 1991, who wrote the book The Highly Sensitive Person – How to thrive when the world overwhelms you describes people like me and about 15-20 percent of the population.
What it feels like to be a highly sensitive person.
A highly sensitive person (HSP) is a term for those who are thought to have an increased or deeper central nervous system sensitivity to physical, emotional, or social stimuli.
Is this you?
· Is time alone each day as essential to you as food and water?
· Do you startle easily?
· Do other people’s mood affect you?
· Are you easily overwhelmed by things like bright lights, strong smells, coarse fabrics, or sirens close by?
· Have you ever been called “too shy” or “too sensitive?”
Most of us feel overstimulated every once and a while, but for the highly sensitive person, it’s a way of life.
I’ll end with a quote from “The Woman’s Book of Courage” by Sue Patton Thoele
I have the courage to see my inner child as lovable.
My inner child is acceptable to me and to others.
I unconditionally love and accept
My inner little girl.
To find out more information and if you are a highly sensitive person visit:
Some information was taken from the book:
Susan Frances Morris spent her time before 2011 as a nurse. She is now embarking on a new adventure in writing. Her passions are walking and bike riding in nature, yoga, traveling, photography, and jewelry design. She has three grown children, four grandchildren. She lives with her husband and two dogs in Clifton Park, New York.
Learn more at www.susanfrancesmorris.com