Heights of Awareness

Highly Sensitive People

by Madisyn Taylor
Excerpt from the book titled Daily Om: Inspirational Thoughts for a Happy, Healthy, and Fulfilling Day

Some people are born into the world with their ears and eyes open to the strong energy pulsating all around them. They experience everyday sensory input in a uniquely heightened way that can cause both pleasure and pain. In an environment overflowing with subtleties of thought, chemicals, noise, light, scent, and both positive and negative energy, these highly sensitive people do not have the ability to filter the emotions, substances, and sensations they take in. They can be easily overwhelmed in crowds and may require quiet time alone to regroup their feelings. But highly sensitive people are far from being weak. On the contrary, they are strong, perceptive, intuitive, and exceptionally artistic people who have a wonderful gift of insight to offer.

Highly sensitive people feel emotions deeply and, as they tend to be empathic, find themselves affected by the emotions of others, even the emotions of actors or characters in books. Because of this, they are perceptive of the needs, joys, and pains of others, and they cannot simply dismiss their feelings. They are as hurt by an insult to another as they would be by an insult to themselves and try to avoid most conflict. When faced with negative emotions or situations, it can be easy for highly sensitive people to suffer from depression or anxiety. Their unique mode of perception allows them to develop a strong appreciation for nature, music, art, and literature. Many talented artists are sensitive, and most sensitive people are artistic in some way.

This sensitivity exerts itself physically as well, which can cause the nervous system to become overloaded when faced with bright lights, loud noises, strong tastes, or erratic environments. Highly sensitive people may be allergic to a number of foods, fabrics, and chemicals. They may also be so touch-sensitive that coarser cloths like denim bruise their skin. Thus, they fare best in peaceful, harmonious settings that offer strong support and may find that they build their strongest bonds with other highly sensitive people who understand their needs. To minimize stress, it can be beneficial to create a daily routine, seek out calming activities, avoid jarring noise and lighting, meditate, and use relaxing essential oils.

Though some highly sensitive people develop animosity toward their way of experiencing the world, it should be understood that it is not a curse but a path to wisdom. Denying your sensitivity can lead to unhappiness, but exploring its benefits can lead to positive change in yourself and others, particularly when you choose to seek out the world's beauty and demonstrate to others the heights it can reach.

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