HSP- High Sensitive Persons

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posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 03:01 AM
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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 with.

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!




posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 03:40 AM
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I understand what you mean. Bosses take it as "stupidity" when really its more of wanting to understand it to the core.

As in understanding every aspect of what you do and the causes and reactions from what you do.. how you were saying "how fast, what direction" etc.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 03:51 AM
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this seems to be along the lines of sensory integration disorder.

i experience hightened sensitivity to almost all sensory input (i cannot stand to touch paper because it physically hurts me) except pain, i have an unusually high tolerance for pain.

for me personally it stems from asperger's syndrome. SID is often found in the autistic spectrum in some form.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 03:57 AM
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Wow. Thanks for posting this. I really resonated to most of the symptoms here. I just thought I was numb. I failed a motorcycle driving class because I got all clouded and couldn't "see" what they were telling me. And it felt like they were yelling at me which makes me shut down. Wow. I will definitely google this. Thanks again for the post.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 04:07 AM
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reply to post by Bob Sholtz
 


There might be some similarities- I wondered once if I was just high on the autistic spectrum, but it almost seems to be going the opposite direction, and into a state of empathy with others which is extreme.

It gets hard to distinguish the emotions of others from my own, because my body has such a strong empathic response. I don't want others around me to feel sadness, anger, or discomfort, because I will feel it with them.

So this looks, from the outside, as a unhealthy desire to please others, to gain their approval, when it is exactly the same drive for personal comfort and happiness that everyone has- except for me, I cannot feel comfort or pleasure if anyone around me is feeling the opposite.

This differs from the other side of the autism scale, where biological reactions don't seem to respond in mimickry with others- empathy is not happening, and the mirror neurons are not activated.

There's more to it than that, and it sounds like the similarity might lie in the high levels of cortisol the body produces to lower levels of stimuli.

_Or maybe this whole sliding scale is a false concept, and in fact, ones body can go from "highly sensitive" to "so damned sensitive the brain must shut out the world entirely as a survival mechanism" ??



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 04:11 AM
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reply to post by missvicky
 


That sounds like the same thing. People who have this often become incapacitated in pressure situations.
When I was young, I used to go blank at school tests- like almost unable to write my name.

I tried getting into competative riding, and foudn I was completely unable to handle it. Even with all my self hypnosis skills and taking beta- blockers, I cannot handle the over stimulation.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 04:16 AM
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reply to post by Pelvi
 


I know! So many people assume quickly that you're an idiot. Then as they get to know you better, they realize you aren't, you just have a mind for detail that they can barely grasp.

Like the story of the Princess and the Pea, you might seem like a irrational neurotic- unless they look and see there WAS a pea under those mattresses.
edit on 20-6-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 04:27 AM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 

you may wish to consider going for a diagnosis. asperger's syndrome isn't *exactly* the same as higher functioning autism.

when i was young if someone was crying, i would inexplicably cry. it isn't so much a lack of empathy, but a misunderstanding of how to express emotions like others. i can read people very well through their voices, but when it comes to interaction, it becomes difficult. if you have asperger's syndrome you may find eye contact difficult, settings with emotional extremes and confrontation very uncomfortable, many things associated with being "introverted", and obsessive interests.

it took some years of research for me to discover what the source of my difficulties (and gifts) was, but after being diagnosed it makes things easier. i can read all about it and begin to categorize how an action will be perceived in more accurate ways and understand the sources of my own behavior.

best of luck to you, whatever the case may be



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 07:07 AM
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reply to post by Bob Sholtz
 

I guess I will try to get a diagnosis. I was originally diagnosed as just extremely sensitive when I was young, and went through various therapies to learn to relax and bring down stress levels (with a hypnotherapist). But it is true that schools of thought mau have changed since then. Back then the idea wasn't even considered a biological trait, just a personality trait, based on Jung's idea.

I don't have trouble with eye contact, at least not making it. I have trouble with people refusing to make eye contact though- it makes all my senses start to go on alert, as if they are a threat.
Kinda weird because a lot of people feel my direct eye contact is a sort of threat, or at least aggressive! I just feel it is how people can determine sincerity with each other. When someone refuses eye contact with me, I immediately start to feel distrusting of them, as if they are a predator trying to hide their motives.
edit on 20-6-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 07:22 AM
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There is positive aspects to this trait, that one can focus on nurturing and finding ways of using in life.
Look here-
Five Gifts of Being Highly Sensitive

1- Sensory Detail

2- Nuances in Meaning

3- Emotional Awareness

4- Creativity

5- Greater Empathy

If you can find a career and lifestyle in which these are a necessary of beneficial, it can be nice. I often think that the relativity of this world is such that it is most important to just figure out what is right for you, rather than what is right in any universal sense.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 07:31 AM
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Originally posted by Bluesma
reply to post by Bob Sholtz
 

I guess I will try to get a diagnosis. I was originally diagnosed as just extremely sensitive when I was young, and went through various therapies to learn to relax and bring down stress levels (with a hypnotherapist). But it is true that schools of thought mau have changed since then. Back then the idea wasn't even considered a biological trait, just a personality trait, based on Jung's idea.

I don't have trouble with eye contact, at least not making it. I have trouble with people refusing to make eye contact though- it makes all my senses start to go on alert, as if they are a threat.
Kinda weird because a lot of people feel my direct eye contact is a sort of threat, or at least aggressive! I just feel it is how people can determine sincerity with each other. When someone refuses eye contact with me, I immediately start to feel distrusting of them, as if they are a predator trying to hide their motives.
edit on 20-6-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)
i hate people who make eye contact big time it is ok for a few seconds but pisses me off no end / does that make me a bad person



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 07:47 AM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 


I must be one of the 20% as this fits!


Thanks for the link and info.

s&f



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 07:56 AM
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Originally posted by billdadobbie
i hate people who make eye contact big time it is ok for a few seconds but pisses me off no end / does that make me a bad person


No it doesn't make you a bad person. And you are not alone! I am aware that many people feel it is aggressive to share eye contact... perhaps that it is too intimate?
I cannot really help the reactions that happen in my body much though, it is instinctive that I will not trust as much someone who cannot hold eye contact. At least I will not put myself in any position where I need to trust them.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 08:28 AM
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Originally posted by Bluesma

Originally posted by billdadobbie
i hate people who make eye contact big time it is ok for a few seconds but pisses me off no end / does that make me a bad person


No it doesn't make you a bad person. And you are not alone! I am aware that many people feel it is aggressive to share eye contact... perhaps that it is too intimate?
I cannot really help the reactions that happen in my body much though, it is instinctive that I will not trust as much someone who cannot hold eye contact. At least I will not put myself in any position where I need to trust them.
more of a intimate thing with me i am way to sensitive to my surroundings i hate a lot of noise / crowds and even shaking hands or someone touching me i will not even let my mother hug me .we are on opposite sides with the eye contact though it makes me aggressive someone eyeballing me but it is a true saying the eyes are the gateway to the soul
ps trust is a thing that must be earned in my books
edit on 20/6/13 by billdadobbie because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 10:17 AM
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This all just sounds like autism to me, not wanting to make eye contact, being awkward around people etc. Isn't that out of the ordinary really.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 11:26 AM
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I've been looking for a way to describe this exact feeling for as long as I can remember it starting , coincedentally I tried looking I up and found something called "sensory processing sensitivity" here the link- thechart.blogs.cnn.com...

It's also interesting that you get along well with your horses , I find myself easily communicating with my dog but not vocally , I guess you could say with observation and if its one thing I learned from them is they try to communicate with us in specific ways such as eye contact and body movement . I don't want to go on about my buddies but its amazing how observation can open communication even if you can't understand to some degree . I'm glad you took your time to look into this , I was starting to worry I was alone with this acute obeservation , it's not always nice to see what I see , but to not see it alone makes me feel less afraid . Take care and stay well.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 12:54 PM
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I have this same problem.My whole life and have just recently figured I must have Asperger's.When I was young I could make friends but I was the weird friend.Extremely naive too despite a high IQ.The min. wage jobs that I have walked away from because when I asked Why this?When that? Etc. they would look at me like I was stupid.I would become indignant and walk.I have pride so the self esteem wasn't lacking.Thank you OP,this is enlightning.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 04:26 PM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 


A lot of high functioning ASD people have very sensitive empathy, just relative to differing stimulus.

www.dosomething.org...



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 05:46 PM
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I don't really care for labels such as HSP, but I do empathize with you OP.

I can relate to anyone one-on-one with ease--and I mean anyone from a pauper to a president.

But put me in a group of people having a conversation, like at a party, or at work, and I am
really uncomfortable. There is just too much information and feedback from to many sources
all at once--from body language, macro-facial expressions, nervous ticks...etc,.

It is information overload that makes me shy, not actual shyness, and DEFINITELY NOT
low self-esteem....

I just cannot relate to more than one person at once with any depth. And I despise shallow
"how's the weather" politically correct social pleasantries.

The other thing that might put me in this group is my problem with eye contact. There are certain people
whom I make eye contact with easily. These are generally honest people who speak their mind.
But I avoid meaningful eye contact (usually) during conversation....not because I am shy or unsure...
but because sometimes I see too much...and It makes me uncomfortable.



posted on Jun, 20 2013 @ 06:47 PM
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It has been an honour reading your thread, meaning your oppening post and some of your replies.
It is good knowing that i am not alone. However i gather i as an extreme case am on a group of much smaller percentage between others. That along with being a perfectionist can be a real challenge and don t help much in my success in life. However i am a very succesful being/earthling in my connection to the nature and the good.
My success so far that is both a blessing and a curse is my clear view of the world and reality.
It seems that i also have some minor 6th sense by the means of remotely feeling others when i am involved in tense thoughts of me.

Thank you

It is good knowing that i am not all alone.

George





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