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Posts tagged ‘EQ IQ HSP’

Fifty Shades of HSP

Too sensitive?

Are you feeling just a wee bit of empathy for that sad, lonely little pin? If so, chances are you’re HSP… and/or a marketer’s dream!!! Come on folks: it’s a PIN!  But if you’re like me: I had an immediate physical ‘sensory’ reaction.

[……. spawning an emotional backstory involving other pin-people that are greatly affecting Pokey’s life… and not for the better: he definitely needs a mentor!!]

And I’ll call my shrink: HE??!
Well, I can’t help it – and neither can you if this pic triggers your emotions in any way.

So many of you resonated with the posts on HSPs (highly sensitive person) and how it is biologically driven moreso than conditioning. Without a mainstream understanding of this, many of you – us – have felt “different”: flawed, lacking; confused by our heightened sensories; painfully suppressing emotions; labelled introverted, shy, weak, wimpy or the incredibly condescending: OH, YOU’RE JUST TOO SENSITIVE!!! You just might be über sensitive, but that’s your calling-card: part of your identity to develop and use to your greatest life.

What’s really interesting, both from blog comments and conversations I have in general, is the number of folks that need their self-image and life to fit into a perfectly defined BOX with the duly assigned bow. Case in point, this comment in an email “Kelly2.0” wrote me:

“I thought I was right-brain, based on the criteria,  
but I’m definitely a list-maker and a planner– so I guess I’m not.”

And my client, let’s call him “Jack”, a very social, life-of-the-party type of guy, was puzzled – almost offended, when I suggested he may want to read a bit about ‘introvert’ tendencies, snickering disdainfully…

Me. Introvert. I don’t think so”.

Rather, Jack was convinced he had depression: because he regularly locked himself in his room for dark, quiet solace- often for days. Both of these folks had clearly misinformed ideas, and were looking at “definitions” far too linearly.

I'm with stupidI want to make it perfectly clear: all of these human “labels” such as introvert, extrovert, HSP, left-brain, right-brain ARE ALL JUST GUIDANCE – clues if you will, to help us understand ourselves a little better; to know that most of our tendencies are normal, and that there are other folks out there (like: MILLIONS!) with idiosyncrasies just as “crazy” as yours and mine! Naming characteristics and behaviours and “grouping” them simply makes it easier to communicate; and greatly benefits professionals to make some relative sense as they’re doing their jobs.  Just like rules: these “categorizations” too, are meant to be broken.

HUMAN BEINGS are on a gray-scale pretty much in every single thing about us: you might have more of something, less of something else; fit clearly into one group description, or fall flatly in the middle of two. I might be a “woman”, but I do not have the same DNA as any other woman on the planet Unique blends(if my parents can be trusted!). You haven’t the foggiest if I was born with a uterus; and my nether parts may biologically include a penis: am I still a woman? My assertiveness is chronically attributed to being a ‘fiery redhead’: there must be something pretty potent in Feria #74 – I’m a brunette! I have categorically green eyes, but their custom tones reflect colours from hazel to blue, depending on my shirt. (Sigh, my bio-family has called me blue-eyed my whole life!). I’m right-handed: but waterski and snowboard “goofy”*. I have 7,499,488,203 freckles. It’s summer: that could change.  My chromosomes put me in the general category of “female”, but as any other “female”: my own customized version. “Sensory” and sensitivity falls equally in the ingredients list of “being human”: how it functions and manifests for each of us will be on a gray-scale too.

As with everything in life, the golden ticket (as stated in the last HSP blog) is simply: AWARENESS. The more you know yourself, identify and respect your different shades, the better you can choose and navigate your path. Knowing you’ll never exceed 5’1″ will most likely save time when considering an NBA career (…and heartache… and your knees).  Knowing you feel pain and empathy for a pin, will most likely save time when considering a nursing** career (…and anxiety… and pharmaceuticals).  Having an understanding of what might be biological, what might be learned, and how to manage and monopolize on both gives tremendous personal power.

50+ Shades of You

READ ON: Kelly2.0 and “Jack’s” – AND MY
misunderstandings about “sensitivities”


Speaking of monopolizing on sensitivity…
Check out Ariana Page Russell and her “Skin Art”:
Use your sensitivities!!“My skin is very sensitive and I blush easily. I have dermatographia, a condition in which one’s immune system releases excessive amounts of histamine, causing capillaries to dilate and welts to appear (lasting about thirty minutes) when the hypersensitive skin’s surface is lightly scratched. This allows me to painlessly draw on my skin with just enough time to photograph the results. Even though I can direct this ephemeral response by drawing on it, the reaction is involuntary, much like the uncontrollable nature of a blush.”
Sensitivity at its most literal… but uniquely Ariana’s to use!

Letters of Expectation

Did you take the test to see if you are HSP: a highly sensitive person, as per the last post?  As mentioned there, people seeking my mentoring services last year had a very common thread, generally, an obliviousness to their own sensitivities: a birth-given gift and crucial tool, not simply a conditioned “asset” or “deficit”. Biological sensitivities – mostly acknowledged wrongly as being “emotional” or “too sensitive”, play a huge role in our personalities; identifying and mastering our specific biological traits – be it in times of challenge or times of growth, make life a whole lot easier.Pay Attention!!!!!

I suppose there’s a quickie test for everything nowadays and we’d drive ourselves insane trying to figure life out rather than live it; but I have to say, twenty years ago, stumbling across Mel Levine’s work on “learning patterns” (A Mind at a Time) and Elaine Aron’s HSP quiz, raised neon flashing-flags for me so crimson that I thought my eyes were bleeding! Clearly: triggers that there was something there for me to pay attention to; enough to wake me up to look at myself not through expectation or behaviour, but through what my simple biology brings to the table. It changed the whole dynamic of my life.

Awareness is my point. The more aware we are of our personal characteristics the better we can navigate.  What if the likes of judgment-inducing procrastination or lack of direction is really due to your biology? You think you’re unmotivated and lazy… when in reality, your biology fumbles with the tools that you learned should work … seem to work for everyone else. For instance, a right-brain, visual learner doesn’t benefit from sitting down and making a detailed goal list: a flow-chart or visionboard maybe… but did you ever learn to “visionboard” your goals, huh, huh – did ya?? Colour-blindness affects 8% of men and .5% of women* translating to 7% of boys and .4% of girls thinking they were idiots growing up,** not understanding that there weren’t four red crayons in the box but cerise, fuschia, brick and mulberry, as classmates were only too quick to point out. An HSP might overwhelm with noise thus retreat to healthy quiet: earning an “introvert” label or anti-social stigma. Simplistic examples with life-altering implications; each scenario above could absolutely direct or challenge a life, relationship or career choice. Leaping off of ground-breakers like Levine and Aron, neuroscience research and evidence is rapidly connecting temperament, brain function, and biology/biochemistry so closely together now that ideologies like HSP and the VALUE in identifying any and all of our personal nuances becomes the true gift.

Speaking of the value of our gifts, a thought…

Other Wise, Deep Thoughts

If HSP means that you have stronger or more intense emotions,  it goes without saying that you must have high EQ: emotional intelligence.

heart B4 head

Oh, so wrong!!! EQ is out-ranking IQ in the new thinking around life and career growth; and while there certainly can be a correlation of HSP and EQ – like say an HSP using a key trait of empathy to gain trust in anything from nannying to copy-writing, it’s not a given that HSPs can recognize and use their gift productively and/or intelligently.  Non-HSPs absolutely can be emotionally intelligent, and have no less opportunity to be so than their HSP counterparts: we can all capitalize on any natural EQ skills, and of course, EQ can be learned. HSPs have a natural edge for EQ with more access to their right-brain functions, but this can also prove to be a detriment via its potential for over-stimulation: being auto-empathic can be e-x-h-a-u-s-t-i-n-g!!  Learning one’s own HSP traits (or lack thereof)  and how to manage it makes all the difference.

OMG all these letters: intellectual alphagetti! To that end, read on for my little ditty of recognizing HSP, funneling it into productive EQ, managing overwelm ATST, so my life wouldn’t be FUBAR.  Smart?Fearless?Idiot?? And… an article giving you a clue as to how hard you might have to work to improve your emotional intelligence: highly sensitive or not, it’s yours for the taking. BYKT.
Next: EQ… or EGO?

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