If you’re a highly sensitive person like me, you know that life sometimes feels overwhelming. When you’re tired, you’re really tired. When you haven’t eaten for a few hours, you’re really hungry. When something bad happens to you, it might weigh on you for days or weeks/ And when everyone else is telling you to move on and get over it, you’re still turning the event over and over in your mind.
The worst part is, when you try to explain to people how you feel, you worry that you sound like you’re complaining or exaggerating. So you often end up saying nothing at all.
The trait of sensitivity can sometimes make us HSPs feel like tortured souls. The world is too much, too loud, too harsh. If only we could just be normal, we tell ourselves, life would be easier. We compare ourselves to other people who seem to float through life and take things in stride. If only everything didn’t have to be such a big deal for us.
It’s easy to focus only on the difficult aspects of being an HSP. Yet it’s this remarkable, rare trait of ours that also gives us our advantage in life. Our sensitivity is a unique biological difference that can give birth to incredible focus, insight, and empathy.
What advantages do HSPs have?
Remember that this list is on the average, and most people will not have all of these traits. Yet according to researcher Dr. Elaine Aron, author of the book The Highly Sensitive Person, HSPs have these advantages, compared to non-HSPs:
1. We’re able to concentrate deeply.
2. We notice subtleties that others may miss.
3. We’re good at tasks requiring vigilance, accuracy, speed, and the detection of minor differences.
4. We’re able to process material to deeper levels.
5. We’re able to learn something new without being aware we have learned.
6. We’re highly conscientious.
7. We have high levels of empathy, and we’re deeply moved by other people’s emotions.
8. We relish a good outcome and figure out more than others do how to make it happen.
9. We’re specialists at fine motor movements.
10. We learn languages better.
11. We consider the past and the future more.
12. We think about our own thinking more.
13. We’re more “right-brained.”
14. We may be more “soulful” and spiritual.
So remember this when you feel misunderstood or when your struggling. You are unique and beautiful.