Do any of the following describe you?
I am easily overwhelmed by the energy of others or I tend to strongly sense it.
Loud or busy environments create distress in me.
I am highly aware of subtle changes in environment around me.
I am sensitive to pain.
I am sensitive to medications.
I am sensitive to caffeine and other stimulants.
Strong scents, bright lights, rough fabrics and other harsh stimuli generally are difficult for me to deal with.
I require time to retreat by myself, in a dark, quiet space.
I startle easily.
I am a conscientious person.
I get rattled and overwhelmed when I have a lot to do and/or a deadline.
I make a point to avoid violent movies, TV shows or news articles.
I am deeply moved by music and art. (do you get goosebumps? tear up?)
If I am being observed while doing a task or completing an assignment, I get so shaky and out of sorts that I do much worse than my norm.
During my childhood, teachers and/or parents saw me as sensitive or shy. This may still be true as an adult.
Changes in life are very difficult for me to handle. They cause a lot of distress.
I do everything in my power to arrange things in my life to avoid.
Being hungry can majorly disrupt my focus or mood. (hangry??)
This isn't meant to be a psychological test but more of a way to begin examining ways that the world impacts you. It is also meant to help normalize experiences you may be having.
If most of these (13 or more) seem to be like you, you MAY be a highly sensitive person. If more than 13, or 13 of these seem extremely like you, highly sensitive personality is most likely you. Remember, this is by no means a psychological test, but more informative.
We all have very different personalities, which means the world impacts us (and we impact the world) in very different ways. But when the world is set up to favor those who are not highly sensitive and for those who are extroverts, it can leave HSP people feeling very unsafe and overwhelmed.
The purpose of sharing this with you all is to inform you that there are people like you and there is more and more research coming about this personality type. You are not alone. Additionally, if you are a HSP person, know that it is okay to set boundaries for yourself. To create the safest world you can, while knowing that sometimes you will have to step out of your comfort zone. Creating a good, healthy self-care routine is vital for everyone, but especially HSP. Taking more alone time, giving yourself extra buffer time for projects and the such, being okay with canceling plans, journaling, talking to a therapist, and being gentle with yourself. It is true that we have to survive in a world that isn't always built around how we function, but that doesn't mean we have to compare ourselves to others who benefit from the system as it is set up. Comparing ourselves just leads to further distress, and if you are a HSP person, this can be really destructive.
Practice some love and self-compassion today (everyday) because you are beautiful and perfectly flawed, just as you are.
Remember to let go of what's no longer serving you, so that you too can rise like the lotus.