16 Habits Of Highly Sensitive People: Part One


Do you feel like you reflect on things more than everyone else? Do you find yourself worrying about how other people feel? Do you prefer quieter, less chaotic environments?
If the above sound true to you, you may be highly sensitive. The personality trait — which was first researched by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D., in the early 1990s — is relatively common, with as many as one in five people possessing it.

1. They feel more deeply. One of the hallmark characteristics of highly sensitive people is the ability to feel more deeply than their less-sensitive peers. “They like to process things on a deep level,” Ted Zeff, Ph.D., author of “The Highly Sensitive Person’s Survival Guide” and other books on highly sensitive people, tells HuffPost. “They’re very intuitive, and go very deep inside to try to figure things out.”

2. They’re more emotionally reactive. People who are highly sensitive will react more in a situation. For instance, they will have more empathy and feel more concern for a friend’s problems, according to Aron. They may also have more concern about how another person may be reacting in the face of a negative event.

3. They’re probably used to hearing, “Don’t take things so personally” and “Why are you so sensitive?” Depending on the culture, sensitivity can be perceived as an asset or a negative trait, Zeff explains. In some of his own research, Zeff says that highly sensitive men he interviewed from other countries — such as Thailand and India — were rarely or never teased, while highly sensitive men he interviewed from North America were frequently or always teased. “So a lot of it is very cultural — the same person who is told, ‘Oh, you’re too sensitive,’ in certain cultures, it’s considered an asset,” he says.

4. They prefer to exercise solo. Highly sensitive people may tend to avoid team sports, where there’s a sense that everyone is watching their every move, Zeff says. In his research, the majority of highly sensitive people he interviewed preferred individual sports, like bicycling, running and hiking, to group sports. However, this is not a blanket rule — there are some highly sensitive people who may have had parents who provided an understanding and supportive environment that would make it easier for them to participate in group sports, Zeff says.

5. It takes longer for them to make decisions. Highly sensitive people are more aware of subtleties and details that could make decisions harder to make, Aron says. Even if there is no “right” or “wrong” decision — for example, it’s impossible to choose a “wrong” flavor of ice cream — highly sensitive people will still tend to take longer to choose because they are weighing every possible outcome. One exception: Once a highly sensitive person has come to the conclusion of what is the right decision to make and what is the wrong decision to make in a certain situation, he or she will be quick to make that “right” decision again in the future.

6. And on that note, they are more upset if they make a “bad” or “wrong” decision. You know that uncomfortable feeling you get after you realize you’ve made a bad decision? For highly sensitive people, “that emotion is amplified because the emotional reactivity is higher,” Aron explains.

7. They’re extremely detail-oriented. Highly sensitive people are the first ones to notice the details in a room, the new shoes that you’re wearing, or a change in weather.

8. Not all highly sensitive people are introverts. In fact, about 30 percent of highly sensitive people are extroverts, according to Aron. She explains that many times, highly sensitive people who are also extroverts grew up in a close-knit community — whether it be a cul-de-sac, small town, or with a parent who worked as a minister or rabbi — and thus would interact with a lot of people. From an article by Amanda L. Chan on Huffington Post http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/26/highly-sensitive-people-signs-habits_n_4810794.html?fb_action_ids=10104139268245175&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_map=[715761448444735]&action_type_map=[%22og.likes%22]&action_ref_map=[]

I’m a romantic, and we romantics are
more sensitive to the way people feel.
We love more, and we hurt more.
When we’re hurt, we hurt for a long time.
Freddy Fender

Feel ‘Em and Let ‘Em Go


Laughter entices and draws others near.
Crying repels all but those who love us dear.
Feasting brings the hungry to left hand and right.
Hunger brings teeth a’ gnashing to hand a bite.
Love looks of peace and sets others at ease,
Heartbreak appears disbelieving, lost and displeased.
Joy is the soft morning light bathing every thing,
Sadness is late night with its sad songs to sing.
Happy, Sad,
Joyful, Mad,
Uncomfortable, Pleased,
Jubilant, Ill-at-ease.
Excited, Let down
Glad, Wearing a frown.
The faces of my face,
As I run the human race.
James Browning

Things change and friends leave. And life doesn’t stop for anybody. I wanted to laugh. Or maybe get mad. Or maybe shrug at how strange everybody was, especially me. I think the idea is that every person has to live for his or her own life and then make the choice to share it with other people.

You can’t just sit there and put everybody’s lives ahead of yours and think that counts as love. You just can’t. You have to do things. I’m going to do what I want to do. I’m going to be who I really am. And I’m going to figure out what that is. Stephen Chbosky

Today I wish for you and me to feel all that is given to us to emote. May the full breadth of your emotions be within you. Take happiness from the good and lessons from the bad. I am grateful that day by day the full spectrum of emotions is mine simply by not fearing nor grasping any of my feelings. I feel ’em and let ’em go.

Even if we don’t have the power
to choose where we come from
we can still choose
where we go from there.
Stephen Chbosky

Closing the Chapter

growingup01You’re missing something. You’re watching everything pass you by and it’s making you anxious but you’re not quite sure how to catch up. A small part of you doesn’t even want to catch up. You’ve become comfortable in your complacency, comfortable in your own mistakes. Your slip ups have become some kind of solace. They’re yours to keep. Flaws have become some sick substitute for a relationship and you take them to bed with you.

You’re too young to be completely happy. You’re currently living your lost years and even though it’s taking you down, you’re not ready for the alternative. Something that no one likes to admit is that it sort of feels good to screw up. You don’t think you know exactly what you’re doing? You can pretend to be naive to spare everyone else’s feelings but let’s not get confused: you’re in control here. Every step of the way.

That is, until you’re not. The thing about being a mess is that you eventually do lose control. The self-destructive spiral you’ve been orchestrating gets ripped away from you and put in the hands of something much bigger. Then you’re screwed. Then you’re going to be saying “…Take me back to the land of stability and normalcy! I’m done living my lost years. Now I just would like to be found!”

Your life is precarious. When you were in high school and college, you treated your mortality like it was a crappy purse. You stomped on it, broke a strap, let a vodka bottle spill out and ruin the leather. You did all of this believing it would all be repaired while you were sleeping, and it usually was. You reach a point, however, when the leather stays torn, when the piece of crap bag becomes beaten beyond repair. Simply put, you have to take a more proactive role in maintaining your happiness and well-being. You’re not just someone watching their own life from afar. You’re in it now. And if you don’t take care of it, it will fall to pieces.

This is how someone becomes the person they want to be. They make changes. They stop taking those pills, clutching those drinks, and start deleting those numbers in their phone that might as well be daggers. They take responsibility for themselves. This might sound so minor but something you all must know by now is that we’re often our own worst enemy. We can’t blame something on a lack of self-awareness. We’re all aware, which makes it that much harder when we see ourselves making the same mistakes. We often wonder why we do the things we do. But we already know why. Knowing and doing are two different things though. I know that x, y, and z make me unhappy but I guess, in the end, I just don’t care enough to make changes. You can’t force yourself to care. You need to reach a point where you DO care which can take a long time.

But once you do reach it, there’s no going back. Being a broken mess is a blast at 19 but once you’re old enough to know better and start to make those necessary changes, returning to that state will feel awful. That’s something to actually mourn. There’s a certain kind of beauty with being reckless with your body and mind. Closing the chapter on that and actively becoming the person you’re going to be feels great but it’s also a tad bittersweet. Sometimes you want to go back to being the person you were before all the bad stuff happened, but you know that’s impossible. So you just bid adieu to that time and look towards your future. (FYI, it looks super bright.) By Ryan O’Connell http://thoughtcatalog.com/2012/how-to-become-the-person-you-want-to-be/

At an age older than many (yet younger than most) I have found myself, or at least enough of me to make out an image I am pleased to recognize. In a few ways acting like I was in my early 20’s for decades had some advantages, but none to hang on to for as long as I did. Most of it was being reckless and irresponsible with women’s hearts where I clearly see a past lack of maturity. For a long time I thought being a ‘player’ was cool… NOT! That is an insatiable and empty quest. Today men who are more respectful and loving than me are uncommon. Pain, heartache and loneliness are educational guardians who repeated their teachings until the lesson was learned. I may have been a slow learner, but one I got it, I am grateful I REALLY got it.

We do not grow absolutely, chronologically.
We grow sometimes in one dimension,
and not in another; unevenly.
We grow partially. We are relative.
We are mature in one realm, childish in another.
The past, present, and future mingle and pull us
backward, forward, or fix us in the present.
Anaïs Nin



June 28, 2013

Dear co-workers, colleagues, associates, friends,

Getting to this date seemed to take forever and now suddenly it has arrived: our last day together. For going on eight years you have believed in me to lead you. I grateful beyond my ability to express my feelings for that honor. I thank you for your unwavering support especially during the times when you did not understand or agree. You simply had faith that I somehow I knew what I was doing.

To a person, you are all good people and talented professionals. We accomplished the near impossible and our competitors did not know what hit them. The business that for years had been given up for dead before our time, became the contender that succeeded and never backed down. We showed ’em didn’t we!

You have been my “family” through one of the most difficult periods of my personal life. I am thankful for the times you “were there for me” and privileged to have had your trust that allowed you to come to me for help with your tough times, professionally and personally.

Some of you have told me I have been great manager; a good boss. If that is true it is because you made me that way. I had to measure up to all of you.

I regret our company has sold this operation, but proud we increased the value to make this a sought after property. Now we are scattering to the wind, but I will always hold high these shared years with you as precious memory. It has been the finest experience of my career. Thank you for making it so.



Man’s feelings are always purest and most glowing
in the hour of meeting and of farewell.
Jean Paul Richter

Feelings and Health and Longevity

ShowYourFeelings1Many of us hope for lives that imitate beer commercials, all happiness and fun. But that fantasy sets us up for disappointment because our lives have more than one dimension, and true emotional health is about experiencing the breadth and depth of our feelings and our lives.

The very nature of life means we will all face losses and difficulties. Yet many of us have been socialized from an early age to ignore loss and hide our real feelings. Most of us have seen the angry child dragged over to a playmate to hiss through clenched teeth, “I’m sorry.” Many of us were once that child. Not to say misbehavior should be ignored; but we can be responsible for our behavior without having to lie to ourselves and others about what we’re feeling.

Think of the stress and wasted energy many of us expend struggling to submerge our feelings instead of learning to express them in healthy ways, such as crying when sad or being assertive when angry. In 1992 The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology reported that emotions are tied to our autonomic nervous system, which controls our heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, respiration, and perspiration, showing clearly that physical and emotional health are interdependent. A 1997 Journal of Abnormal Psychology study reported that not expressing feelings impacts our health and longevity.

Expressing feelings may be difficult in part because we’ve been trained to see certain emotions such as anger, sadness, and fear as negative. Often we’ve learned to repress these feelings by distracting ourselves with sugar, adrenalin highs, drugs, alcohol, accomplishments, and sex. Yet anger can be a great motivator for change. It was anger about the loss of clean air and water that got people lobbying for change through the environmental movement. Fear can have similar positive effects, causing us to step back from the abyss and live another day. Case in point: it was only when my mom faced a serious bout of pneumonia that she quit smoking.

The challenge is to step towards emotional health and learn to experience and express our emotions appropriately. We need to become familiar with our emotions in order to express them well. A first step may be to reflect often on the question, “What am I feeling right now?” Another option may be to talk with someone who can listen without judging – a family member, friend, or a counselor. If expressing your feelings with others is too intimidating, consider expressing them through writing, drawing, music, or even screaming into a pillow while in the bathroom with the shower running.

Anymore I wear my feelings out in plain sight most of the time and express them willingly. It has impressed me how much more people seem to relate to me and I to them once “feelings” are consistently out on the table . It’s simple really, letting my feelings show to those I care has made my relationships and my life better. And I’m grateful one of those relationships is with myself.

Never apologize
for showing your feelings.
When you do,
you are apologizing
for the truth.
Jose N. Harris