I don't know if this is the appropriate forum for this, I guess it concerns a medical issue, because it pertains to a biological trait one is born
I have an interest in the studies on Highly Sensitive Persons.
This is a trait that exists in about 15 to 20% of the population, and corresponds to specific differences in their nervous system.
It is also found in animals, in about the same percentage.
I first started to go looking for some information on this because I noticed, as a horse person, that the best horse-rider partnerships seem to rely
upon a similar level of sensitivity between the two. I found that I work better with highly sensitive and reactional horses, which seemed to be
unlikely considering I too, am highly sensitive and reactional- you'd think it is a recipe for disaster!
But on the contrary, horses that seem nutso to others are calm and clear with me. I found it just seems to be that we are able to communicate in ways
that are subtle and precise - whereas both of us feel confused with others that do not notice subtle distinctions and precisions.
For a long time I have felt that my personality is misunderstood by others often- specifically, in that it is often assumed I am shy
lacking in self confidence or esteem
or fearful. People tend to be surprised when they get to know me better and find out that I have a rather
high esteem of myself and a good self image, I am not fearful or insecure. When I am quiet and not seeking attention, I am not running from the world,
I am observing it, processing it, on deep levels. I am learning.
So when I found out about this personality trait description, it was a nice change- feeling understood correctly.
I have difficulties in relating to people a lot of times, and I find that for some people, working with me is a challenge, because like the horses
that bound if you have one tiny muscle in your butt twitch, it puts pressure on them to use a level of self control, discipline, and concentration
that they are not accustomed to and in some cases just cannot do!
This can be a huge problem when I am in the role of inferior in an environment of work or education- teachers or bosses that will say, "Just go" for
example, and I need more specification on that- "where? how fast? when? in what way? ..."
Because basically, I can't handle being yelled at if I don't do it the right way, the right speed, the right direction, the right time, etc. It is
not a lack of self esteem (I know this is only a role for me in this hour of work time, it is not a question of life or death, nor of being loved or
accepted) it is that my body has a reaction of cortisol that drowns out my ability to think. It literally feels like drowning, and robs me of all my
rational left brain processes.
If I get yelled at, it really doesn't matter what you yell anymore, or anything you tell me or explain to me, it will not be understood or recorded
in my memory. I literally have no idea what a person said ten minutes after being yelled at by them.
So in order to remain clear minded and able to receive their communications I need that precision, and can be an excellent partner, employee, student,
with someone that can communicate them with me. I also can have a very good memory and become very autonomous and dependable, if that state of hyper
arousal is avoided.
I just thought I'd bring up this, because I sometimes meet people with the same thing, but that don't have a context to refer it to. They tell
themselves they need to "toughen up" (as I did for years) and not be so sensitive, blame themselves for other peoples frustrations with them- and
THAT can lead to low self esteem !
I find looking at it this way aids me to be able to comprehend better others that are perplexed and frustrated with me, and in some cases that enables
me to communicate with them a bit more effectively. Not always, but sometimes.
It also helps me to remind myself of certain challenges that I tend to forget, that go with this- I tend to turn so much attention on others, I forget
to take care of myself. My health, my emotional needs and limits.... I end up having other people feel like they need to rescue me from myself at
times, and that is very embarrassing. I recently had coworkers actually physically take me to the ER, and a nurse started yelling at me for not having
come in sooner. Needless to say, I don't remember much of what she said exactly, my mind left the room as soon as she started in with aggression and
yelling, and I became a blubbering mess.
But the crux of the problem, I got- I have once again been forgetting to shut out the world and take care of myself.
This is a common hazard for people who have this trait, and it is helpful to keep it in mind.
If others can relate or identify with what I try to describe here, do a Google search on HSP, and maybe see if there is info that can be helpful to
you in everyday living!
I just thought I'd bring it up, because many people have never heard of it, and who knows who might benefit from having it called to their attention!