Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Highly Sensitive Person

By Elaine N. Aron

Do you have a keen imagination and vivid dreams? Is time alone each day as essential to you as food and water? Are you “too shy” or “too sensitive” according to others? Do noise and confusion quickly overwhelm you? If your answers are yes, you may be a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)
Most of us feel overstimulated every once in a while, but for the HSP, it’s a way of life. In this groundbreaking book, Dr. Elaine Aron, a clinical psychologist, workshop leader, and an HSP herself, shows you how to identify this trait in yourself and make the most of it in everyday situations. Drawing on her many years of research and hundreds of interviews, she shows how you can better understand yourself and your trait to create a fuller, richer life.

I loved reading this book. I have only just begun to understand what being a “highly sensitive person” means, and how it isn’t a weakness or something to be ashamed of. There are differing degrees for everyone, and I was happy to find out that I wasn’t the only one having the experiences that are described in this book. This is all about how people who are Highly sensitive are overstimulated and cannot handle the “normal” amount of input that others can. We need quiet, we need space, we can’t handle the same amounts of time at a party or the same amount of noise. It isn’t because we’re defective, it’s because we are more aware of everything around us, we’re constantly focused and deeply present. Not to say that other people don’t experience these same things, it’s just that HSPs are like that the majority of the time and find it hard to switch off. For example, some noises can hurt my ears and bring tears to my eyes, like the sound of metal ringing. Some textures make me have anxiety, and feel wrong. The cold is draining and I feel it more keenly than most to the point where if I am not at a comfortable temperature I get teary because it hurts. This book not only explores and explains HSP traits, but helps those who experience them to cope and use them in a very noisy world. It’s an eye-opening read and I enjoyed it immensely.

I give it a 4 out of 5

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