I always find it interesting when the things that most make you who you are sometimes become things that you rub against most harshly. That’s something I’ve been thinking about this weekend. Like approximately 15% of the population I’m a highly sensitive person. And there’s no doubt in my mind it’s one of the reasons I’m so good at my work. My heightened receptivity makes it very easy to access my intuition; very easy to connect and read energy; very easy to both read the Akashic Records and to be a channel. And research defines other gifts that being highly sensitive can bring that I find delightful as well, such as increased creativity, deep awareness of rich sensory detail, heightened perception of nuance; greater empathy, and great emotional awareness. For me these are all pluses that make my life opulently wonderful.
But these very gifts also carry some challenges to be aware of. I’m easily overwhelmed and overstimulated and I need to build in a lot of space and time to myself into my life. Awareness of the emotions of others is truly a gift, but it also has meant I’ve had to work very hard at maintaining healthy boundaries that serve my sanity. And I very often feel like I’m out of sync with the rest of the world who seems so much to value extroversion and being highly social. As I’ve aged I’ve become lots more comfortable with being seen as eccentric, but I won’t lie, I do sometimes feel stung by judgment. No doubt, some of it clearly my own. And I wish that part were easier.
This weekend we had a block party – I believe the first ever in the history of this neighborhood. I woke up Saturday a little nervous (hello… BIG party…scary!) and a littIe excited (hello… BIG party… my chance to debut a new personality – social butterfly at ease among millions).
LOL – what was I thinking?! Alas the party was much harder than I’d hoped. Because I’m good at seeing energy, I often think in those kind of visual terms. And so I often experience myself as a kind of evenly rolling wave, and other people as waves of energy as well. In small doses we can gently play in each others fields, but when too much, from too many directions comes at me, I feel my wave disrupted and I see and experience dissonance. Ouch! One of the great things about yesterday’s experience was the retreat to the safety of my house sanctuary was always less than a block away. So I came and went as I was able, or felt most comfortable. And even amidst wishing I were somehow different, I still remembered to build in some of the necessary things I’ve learned help me most easily recover when I’ve had a big dose of overwhelm.
I work with a lot of highly sensitive people and I’m often asked what practices can help in recovery. Here are things I find useful:
- Be conscious of grounding and centering. Overwhelm pulls you off center, so institute practices that bring you back. Simple breath practices can be helpful here.
- Send love. This can be a preventative measure when feeling on the edge of overwhelm. If you can step back just a bit and flood the situation with love it can be helpful. I know some of you are thinking “what?!” but this can be a perfect time to engage in a metta prayer. Sending love and compassion to yourself and everyone can help create harmony that lessens that jarring feeling of dissonance. And it can also be very helpful in the recovery phase as well. In those times I often find myself seeking out Jennifer Berezan’s album In These Arms . It’s a wonderful example of a lovingkindness practice and can feel really good. If you’re interested in getting a taste, this is an official video you might want to check out.
- Water. Drink lots. And salt baths can be a good way to clear and detox as well.
- Energetic Clearing. I clear myself and I have people who will clear for me as well, and this is a lovely blessing. One of the easiest methods is one Megan Potter of Limitless Living teaches, and she’s on a mission to get everyone to learn how to.
- Aromatherapy and flower essences. I’ve been using these supports for decades and really can’t imagine life without them. I literally use them every day. I developed my Feel Good Energy Shift business precisely because I find them so helpful, and so do my clients.
I used all these practices this weekend and I’m feeling fine.
Are you a highly sensitive person? I’d love to hear what you find helpful. Please drop a line in the comments and add to our collective harmony rebalancer. And who doesn’t want to be part of that?
Thank you for putting into words a visual of my life….
I find taking a no judgement approach and being in gratitude at the start helps me the most….
I am able to step into a place of calm and quiet while fully being present…..
I look forward to the Rose Councils next transmission…the energy coming through now has speeded up how I handle even mundane tasks knowing I rely more on my intuition and compassion from my heart center and less on my thought process.
Excellent Edy – I can see how non-judgment and gratitude serve well. And yay you for living more fully from your intuitive and compassionate point of focus!
I found you through one of my favorite S’heroes, Limitless Megan! 😉 I’m so looking forward to her BE retreat in a few days.
I’ve always been fascinated with–the only way I’ve really known how to put it is, “the things our eyes can’t see.” My Christian background (and I’m still a Christian) has dissuaded me from these things. However, as I’ve been going through some real life-changing things for the past few years and am really coming back to finding out who I am, I can’t ignore these things (energy, chakras, etc.) any longer.
I’ve known for some time that I have some sort of “gift.” It may just be that I’m highly sensitive. I believe my almost-eight-year-old daughter is the same. I’m just starting to learn about crystal children (and adults) and indigo children. My “gift” has been snuffed out, if you will, by years of unhappily conforming. I’m frustrated with the metaphorical crickets I hear chirping within myself, but I’m excited to learn about energy work/clearing and how it can help me.
Anyhoo, sorry… didn’t expect to ramble on like that. 😉
As a highly sensitive person, I am often (too often) incensed at the thoughtless and selfish acts I see around me. I have had quite a few confrontations with strangers over these things. This saddens me because I want to be all about the “peace, love, and happiness” that I want the world to live in. Silly, hippie me. 😉 When people I don’t know stand too close to me, it feels like my spine wants to shoot out the top of my head (if that makes any sense to you). Ack!
What can I do to help curb some of these irritating behaviors of mine? I realize I’m only responsible for my actions and reactions, no one else’s. I feel so disappointed in myself when I let others get to me, in parking lots, on the road, in store lines. I’ve recently read a little saying that I’ve made one my mantras: “I’m not the jacka$$ whisperer.” I have to remind myself of this several times a day. It’s exhausting. Thanks for reading my rambling. 😉
Hi Karla – glad you found your way here via the ever-wonderful Limitless Megan. Being a HSP certainly can be challenging, but in many ways it feels like such a blessing to me as well. Sometimes I look at a flower and simply feel so enchanted with its beauty and its fragrance that I vibrate with delight. How wonderful is that?!
I’m glad you’re excited to be learning more about “the things our eyes can’t see” – what a fun and expansive time for you! As you’re exploring more about energy work, I’m thinking it’ll be helpful for you to learn more about maintaining healthy energetic boundaries that feel good to you, and so you aren’t so impacted by others. When you’re able to do that you don’t have to expend energy “defending” against others intrusion, and then you get to use all that saved energy just shining brightly yourself. Yay!
I am most certainly a sensitive person. I could have written this post, too, except for the part about the block party, because I would have probably spent the party at the library, ensconced in the mystery aisle. Thank you for these tips — many I’ve already found useful, and others I’ll start playing with to see how they might help.
Speaking of sensitivities, I find my own to be a gift — a wonderful strength. My creativity, intuition, and connection with nature, not to mention my ability to be present with depth in my most important relationships, are all keyed to sensitivity. I’m so grateful for it!
Hanging out in the library’s mystery aisle sounds like a fabulous plan Harmony. And I couldn’t agree more, I think being sensitive is a wonderful gift, especially when we learn exquisite ways to care for ourselves.