"You're just too sensitive. Don't take things so personally."
Do you hear these words a lot? You are probably an HSP; a Higly Sensitive Person. As an HSP, we process things on a deep level, that’s just who we are. And it can be a great asset, as long as we honor this important trait.
Do you find yourself worrying about how other people feel? Do you prefer quieter, less chaotic environments? Do you feel like you reflect on things more than everyone else? Do you have more empathy and feel more concern for a friend's problems? Do you tend to take longer to choose because you are weighing every possible outcome? These are common characteristics of an HSP.
Personality traits that value less stimulation and higher sensitivity used to be frowned upon, but slowly there is an awareness building that -- in fact, being highly sensitive carries a multitude of positive characteristics. 20% of the population fall into the HSP category – and are often better friends, workers, parents etc because of it. Being a highly sensitive individual may be more useful than the common wisdom would have us believe, according to researcher and psychologist Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. In fact, as Aron explains, there are numerous misconceptions about people who are HSPs For example, about 30 percent of highly sensitive people are extroverts, they just need to re-charge their batteries by being alone every so often. Because they are so intuitive, Aron says that sensitive individuals who “just feel more deeply” can actually use their trait to perform better.
Gabriella, herself an HSP, believes that being highly sensitive carries a multitude of positive characteristics. She has learnt through the years to benefit from these as well as recognize the moments that require the extra gentle touch, and she includes these skills in her work.