The word “sensitive” has “sense” as its base. Therefore, a highly sensitive person is someone whose five classical senses can become overly stimulated more than the average person. Their senses of sight, smell, hearing, touch, and taste cause a higher-than-normal level of brain activity when triggered.
Because the response to overstimulation is often excessively negative, let’s look at a few coping strategies that the HSP can use to lower feelings of stress and anxiety when triggered.
Preparation Is Key
Each morning, remind yourself that your senses are on high alert. Look at this as a positive thing. It means your central nervous system is more talented and capable than the average person. It also means there’s a good chance that a situation that might not cause much reaction for most people could be difficult for you to process.
Have a conversation with yourself each morning. Be thankful for the fact that your five senses are exceptional in their ability to recognize sensory input. Tell yourself that overstimulation will happen somehow and that you control your response.
Ask Others What They Are Experiencing
If you smell smoke in an inappropriate situation, your highly sensitive sensory network could save the day. Sometimes, though, you feel like you are overstimulated in some way when your personal response might not be correct. If one or more of your senses gets alarm bells ringing and you don’t see any reason to be concerned as you are, mention your feelings to someone else.
Ask them what they are experiencing. If several people don’t have the same sensory response as you, this might help calm your racing mind.
Remember That You Are a Deep Thinker
We all have a tendency to overthink things every once in a while. It can cause stress, anxiety, and frustration even when you realize this is happening. Take a deep breath when your senses are stimulated to a mental breaking point. Calm your mind and go to a safe and comfortable spot emotionally.
Then, remind yourself that you are a deep thinker.
Highly sensitive people are deep processors. They have a tendency to overthink in the simplest of situations. Remembering that you tend to think too much in some situations can help you spot an overreaction to an experience that doesn’t require such a dramatic response.
Control over your emotions is possible when your senses are overly stimulated. Remember who you are. Celebrate the fact that you are more aware of the world around you than most people.
Reach the Author for Human Design Consultation at Dr. Veronica Anderson