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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-03-05 08:25 PM
Original message
The Highly Sensitve Person,
Hi. I just found this group. Thanks to whoever started it. Those of you talking about needing time alone and avoiding large crowds (as I do), have you read The Highly Sensitive Person, by Elaine Aaron?

In it she explains that some people (me, for example) are not "shy", she derides it as derogatory because it defines you by the expectations of others. People who prefer alone time are "highly sensitive" , easily and uncommonly overly-stimulated by things that others find merely enjoyable: dancing in a club; large crowds (say at a football game), parties, multiple social interactions. I can relate to feeling overly tired and needing to sleep after such events.

I first read this book about 7 years ago. I always felt that being shy was somehing I should overcome. Her book was a revelation to me. After reading her book, I stopped feeling guilty for being who I am. I still require long periods alone, but I don't make myself feel bad about it. Neither do I put pressure on myself to change, to be more outgoing. As a result I can sometimes enjoy being overly-stimulated for a little while, say at a club or a dance. Just make sure I have some quiet time afterwards to come down.

You can read her Web site here:

http://www.hsperson.com /

She even has a short online quize to tell you if you are an HSP, for short.
http://www.hsperson.com/pages/test.htm

If you have read it, what do you think?
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DemExpat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-04-05 06:21 AM
Response to Original message
1. Her book significantly helped me along in accepting
Edited on Tue Jan-04-05 06:35 AM by DemExpat
who and how I am! Before I thought I was a defect model, now I feel even privileged to be sensitive (intuitive and perceptive) :D

I scored almost a perfect score on the test...also I am INFJ on the Briggs testing as well.
Very much an introvert and shy of too much socializing. :-)


We mentioned this down here, but always good to discuss this more!
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

My husband bought me the 2005 calender for the Highly Sensitive Person from this author and I thought about sometimes posting one of the messages for the day in this group for those of us who can identify with this.... :thumbsup:

DemEx

edit:
BTW - Welcome, supernova, to this interesting and special Club! :hi:
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Darth_Kitten Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 11:35 AM
Response to Original message
2. There are good sites out there for highly sensitive people.....
We are wired differently, I don't know how to really explain it for non-highly sensitive persons, maybe it has to do with our nervous systems and how highly "charged" we are. It's not that we are better, just different.
We just can never really "shut down". External stimuli can sometimes be overwhelming to us..... :)
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underseasurveyor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-16-05 10:02 PM
Response to Original message
3. Hi back atcha supernova
:hi:
I haven't been to her website yet (I will after I post this :thumbsup: ) I just read your brief description above and thought, Hey maybe I'm not a total basket-case after all :evilgrin:

Being perceived as a 'shy' person is something that the people around you want and expect 'you' to change about yourself. And there's plenty of guilt along for the ride sending wrong messages, convincing us that we're very, very unhappy people, that we are "missing out" because we're so 'shy.' :eyes:

But I'm really not that 'shy' of a person. Maybe slightly reserved at first, but I don't think I'm all that shy, a bit at times it just depends on the setting. This HSPerson seems to describe "my ways" more closely compared to the definitions of shy(ness).
And the alone time?
Absolutely cherish it.
Crowds, crowded places, busy venues?
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAArgh No :freak:
:boring: aaah sleep :thumbsup:

I'm looking forward to reading Elaine's insights on this. Thanks for passing this along it couldn't have come at a more needed time for me.




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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-05 03:36 AM
Response to Original message
4. I scored eighteen.
But my "sensitivity" would seem to be ascribable to the fact that I'm autistic and have Central Auditory Processing Disorder. Several of the traits of the "highly sensitive person" seem to overlap with autistic traits, actually (sensory sensitivity is the most obvious).
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KeepHopeAlive Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 02:15 PM
Response to Original message
5. It's a great book
I read the book a few years ago and passed it along to others. For me, self-acceptance was the greatest gift the book offered. I've always felt a bit of a misfit and used to work on "improving" myself. Now I fully accept my sensitivities and honor them. For instance, I love to dance, and to avoid overstimulation when on a crowded floor, I close my eyes. I'm very good at dancing around people.

Thanks for passing along the website!

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DemExpat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 03:19 PM
Response to Original message
6. The HSP tips for today on my Dutch calender:
Edited on Sat Jan-29-05 03:19 PM by DemExpat
(my translation)

Saturday, Jan. 29, 2005


"Try to find your optimal level of stimulation"

Other ways to help your body cope with over-excitement and stress:

*Don't go too long without eating - make sure that your always have a healthy snack with you.

*Experiment to discover which foods, herbs and dietary supplements help you handle stress.

*Look for a GP and dentist who understand your sensitivity. And visit them regularly.

*Be aware that you are probably sensitive to caffeine.

*You are probably more sensitive for most medicines too. Start out with a lower dosis than is usually prescribed.

Elaine N. Aron


:hi:

DemEx
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smirkymonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-11-06 08:24 PM
Response to Original message
7. Another HSP here - I'm a 24 on the test.
One problem I have is comparing myself to "normal" people and feeling that there is something very wrong with me, which in turn makes me feel isolated and depressed.
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-12-06 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Welcome smirkeymonkey!
:D :hug: You are defnintely *not* alone. One of the great things about Elaine Aron's work is that it is a resetting of the word "normal."

We HSPs are normal. We don't post much in this room, but we are here. Think of us as all sitting in the room together quietly. Some of us are reading, some of are painting even, or maybe listening to our iPods. :D Maybe two or three are talking together calmly.

Please don't feel alone. :hug:

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smirkymonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-12-06 11:47 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Thank you Supernova!
It's so hard to find other like-minded people when you are an HSP, especially in a city like NYC. I know they are out there, but of course we never meet each other because we are all so busy isolating. :)

I would love to only be around other HSPs because I feel so alienated from people who don't get my need for alone time, quiet and peace. I frequently need to nap on weekends because I just get so overstimulated by walking around Manhattan. Thanks for your kind words! :hug:
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atomic-fly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-16-06 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. i scored 22
not overly sensitive to pain and caffeine. I think I built a tolerance for caffeine. I used to
be very sensitive to it.
I have the eye of an artist, so I enjoy being sensitive most of the time.

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emmajane67 Donating Member (401 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 09:45 AM
Response to Original message
11. I scored 24 on this test.
I discovered this idea a year or two ago and it made sense to me.
When I was younger I always used to think it was unfair that I used to feel everything soooo intensely. That's why I am a good listener and give good advice, because I actually feel the persons pain and completely empathise with their situation. Sometimes it's too much for me. The city I live in now has too much bad stuff going on, it is beginning to drown my senses as I feel overwhelmed by what I constantly pick up on.
I am aware of it though so that's good.
Rant over.
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idgiehkt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-27-06 11:09 PM
Response to Original message
12. god, I checked them all. Am I a freak?
This is kind of a relief.

The only thing is I am getting weirder as I get older and not for the better. I've heard people here talk about energy coming from other people and I am increasingly less and less tolerant of things in my life as well. I wasn't this way growing up and in my early twenties I was normally materialistic but the older I get the fewer possessions I like to have and I am now at the point where I am realizing that is a phobia and not some cute hippie/bohemian thing. I literally can't stand the energy coming off of all these things around me, and I continually take garbage bags of stuff to goodwill. I am considering getting on some kind of mild OCD medicine or something if it doesn't eventually improve. I feel like I have the opposite of that 'hoarder' syndrome, but I have never met anyone else who has it.
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smirkymonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-28-06 09:26 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. I do - the older I get, the more burdened I feel by "stuff"
I am constantly getting rid of things - I don't know why. Is it my own energy in these objects that I can't stand? Hmmmm.... Anyway, I feel freer when I don't have a lot of literal "baggage".
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-29-06 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. Oh, I have it too.
I like to have much less stuff now than I did when I was younger. And I've switched the kind of stuff I like having around too:

Large heavy furniture (that I can't move, is costly, and in need of perpetual dusting) No.
Nic Nacks to weigh down shelves (costly, don't interest me and in need of perpetual dusting) No

See a pattern developing here? If I have to devote significant time to taking care of it, I don't want it.


I will buy (other than the necessary food and clothing and automotive) items or supplies that support my pastimes:

Paints/art supplies (but only what I can use at the time)
Music
Movies




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trud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-02-11 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #12
18. 26
I'm not sure I'm highly sensitive to caffeine. Bingo on everything else.

Sure wish I'd seen this years ago.

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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-18-06 05:55 PM
Response to Original message
13. Thank you.
I shall look into this at greater depth.

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NMMNG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-01-06 04:11 AM
Response to Original message
16. I scored 22
:yoiks:
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Louisiana1976 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-03-09 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. I did, too.
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