Could you be an HSP?

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I had a eurika moment when my daughter recently discovered the personality trait known as HSP (Highly Sensitive Person). In fact 1 in 5 of us are. People who are HSP tend to over think, they are very conscientious, they have a very vivid imagination, they read other peoples emotions easily and they tend to worry all the time and they want to help other people. Because of our wild imagination, we struggle when under test conditions because our imagination (what if they don't like me, what if I can't answer a question, what if I make a mistake)They are physically sensitive as well. I had hayfever as a child, I have discovered that oranges give me migraines, dairy makes me anxious, I used to get a rash on my skin from being in sunlight. We have good reactions and we struggle when we have too much on the go becuase we get over stimulated. 

A good example of the emotional side is I always get overcome with emotion at funerals. I could walk off the street into a random funeral and well up. Why? Because I pick up on the emotions of the suffering relatives, I have transferred their suffering to me. We put pourselves in other peoples shoes. We also generally prefer to stay at home than go to a party. Having said that, 30% of HSP's are extravert. Male HSP's may come across as almost femanine because we are so caring. It is perhaps harder for us males to admit to being an HSP but I want to let everyone know because it has really helped me to understand and accept myself and focus on the plus side of being an HSP. 

Do your own research and check out if this is you.  

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  • Posted

    Hi phil.

    Very interesting post.

    I have a conection to some of your points.

    You may be interested in this.

    A highly sensitive person (HSP) is a person having the innate trait of high sensory processing sensitivity (or innate sensitiveness, as originally coined by Carl Jung. Some common signs are sensitivity to loud noises, bright or fluorescent lights, and strong smells. HSP's often describe themselves as having a rich and complex inner life. They may startle easily and get rattled when required to accomplish a lot in a short time. According to Elaine N. Aron and colleagues as well as other researchers, highly sensitive people, who compose about a fifth of the population (equal numbers in men and women), may process sensory data much more deeply and thoroughly due to a biological difference in their nervous systems. The trait is measured using the HSP Scale, which has been demonstrated to have both internal and external validity. Although the term is primarily used to describe humans, something similar to the trait is present in over 100 other species.

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    • Posted


      Thanks YOD but I'm way ahead of you there. I am currently reading Elaine's book. The other day I was doing some intense studying right next to the phone when it rang. I jumped out of my skin! As an HSP, we have the ability to spot who is an HSP and who isn't. In my experience, non HSP's struggle to understand HSP's.

      My wife's daughter is not an HSP but our daughters clearly are. I am sure it is an hereidary trait. When i discussed it recently with my mother, she confirmed she is an HSP and so was her father. We have two cats, one is and one isn't.

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    • Posted


      Thank you for your show of solidarity! HSP's need to find this out. I suspect many are stuck in a world of anxiety and stress seeing their solution in pills rather than knowing there is a reason they act the way they do. Possibly like me stuck in a career they shouldn't be in. I am hoping to retrain as a teacher when I complete my degree.

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