The American psychologist Dr. Elaine N. Aron introduced the term ‘High Sensitive Person’ or HSP in 1996. It is also called ‘Sensory-Processing Sensitivity’. High sensitivity is a personality trait (not an illness) which encompasses 15 to 20% of the male and female population.
Highly sensitive people exhibit the 4 following characteristics:
- They perceive all external input in an intense and deep way.
- They feel overstimulated when receiving a lot of sensory and emotional information.
- They experience many emotions in life and are strongly empathic.
- They have a refined sensitivity, not only in terms of the five senses, but also of subtle changes in the environment or of the emotional state of people
High sensitivity is detectable in the brain. Brain scans show that HSPs when seeing certain images, activate more parts of their brain (specifically the areas that are related to consciousness, attention, empathy, integration of sensory information and action planning) than non-HSPs.
How does this happen? HSP lack a certain filter, therefore they receive is a lot of information which needs to be processed. As a result HSPs are quickly overstimulated, tired or emotional and are more affected by noise.
HSP’s are available in all forms and shapes. As long as they are not aware of being highly sensitivity, they may feel that they don’t fit in society. They might behave like misfits who rebel, feel depressed or never good enough. It is so important to get early on in life guidance as a highly sensitive person. Sometimes parents are able to provide support, but many grow up in an unsupported environment and have to deal later on in life with the consequences.
Contact me if you:
– think that you are highly sensitive and would you like to know more about it
– know that you are an HSP and would you like to deal better with the challenges of being highly sensitive or feel stuck and overwhelmed.