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How highly sensitive people view the world

How highly sensitive people view the world

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Highly sensitive people can view the world differently to others and that is not necessarily a bad thing.

Elaine Aron, the researcher who coined the phrase ‘highly sensitive people’ (HSPs) and author of many books on the subject, estimates that somewhere in the region of 15-20% of the population would be classed as being highly sensitive, so it’s certainly not an uncommon trait.

Rather than being fragile, highly-strung, fearful, timid or overly sensitive, highly sensitive people simply have a greater responsiveness to what is going on in the world around them. This means they can be more empathic and see things that others miss. Here are just some of the ways in which highly sensitive people tend to view the world differently.


What might have a moderately stimulating affect on one person can overwhelm someone who is highly sensitive. That’s not to say all HSPs will be unable to cope with too much stimulation, it just means that you often need some down time in between the busy periods. Having too much going on at the same time can make it difficult to process everything you’re taking in.


Hypersensitive people tend to be very intuitive and in tune with their surroundings. You’ll pick up on subtle changes, whether it’s someone’s mood or a shifted piece of furniture. Aron explains: “This is mainly because your brain processes information and reflects on it more deeply. So even if you wear glasses, for example, you see more than others by noticing more.”

Working alone

Many people who are highly sensitive become nervous when being watched and so may perform poorly on a supervised task, even though they know they are perfectly capable. For this reason, many HSPs prefer to work alone. This also translates into hobbies and interests. You’re more likely to find a highly sensitive person who runs or cycles than one who participates in a team sport.


How highly sensitive people view the worldBecause highly sensitive people notice more about others, they can often sense how people are feeling. You may know instinctively what mood a person is in before they even open their mouth to speak to you. You might try to avoid watching violent films or distressing news reports, as you know it will arouse negative emotions. Books, music, film and art can also move you easily.


For hypersensitive people making decisions can be pretty tough. Everyone gets a bit upset when they realise they’ve made the wrong choice but highly sensitive people feel that disappointment many times over. This means that when you do have to make a decision, no matter how small, you take your time to ensure that you weigh up every possible outcome.

While some people may not understand what makes you tick, being highly sensitive is not a disorder or mental health condition. Rather, it is an innate quality that you should be proud of. Who cares if you cry at Eastenders or work out alone? As long as you’re always true to yourself, you’ve got life covered.



About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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