Neuroscience: Are You Too Sensitive?

Do you take things too personally? Overanalyze the situation? Feel defensive? Then you are almost certainly among the group classified as Highly Sensitive People.

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“Dr. Aron earned her M.A. from York University in Toronto in clincial psychology and her Ph.D. at Pacifica Graduate Institute in clinical depth psychology as well as interning at the C. G. Jung Institute in San Francisco. Besides beginning the study of the innate temperament trait of high sensitivity in 1991, she, along with her husband Dr. Arthur Aron, are two of the leading scientists studying the psychology of love and close relationships. They are also pioneers in studying both sensitivity and love using functional magnetic resonance imaging. She maintains a small psychotherapy practice in Mill Valley and San Francisco.”
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A highly sensitive person (HSP) is a person having the innate trait of high psychological sensitivity (or innate sensitiveness as Carl Jung originally coined it). According to Elaine N. Aron and colleagues as well as other researchers, highly sensitive people, who comprise about a fifth of the population, may process sensory data much more deeply and thoroughly due to a biological difference in their nervous systems.[1]
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7 thoughts on “Neuroscience: Are You Too Sensitive?

  1. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being sensitive. I really don’t. I don’t know why everyone else seems to think that it’s unbecoming of someone’s behavior and an undesirable personality trait.

    I think it allows me to experience more. If I’m not wearing this suit of armor, yeah, it hurts. Life hurts. But, I wouldn’t be able to feel the good. Every sense would be dampened. How can a person experience real joy without knowing real pain?

  2. Nu, Taxi? I’m thinking you’re in this club. I certainly am. My psychiatrist calls it “sensitive brain syndrome.” He says, some people have sensitive skin, some people have sensitive stomachs, some people have sensitive brains. In his opinion, even though some people might require medication in order to live with the level of sensory input to which they are subjected in the course of daily life, he would not call this “abnormal.” I am of a mind to agree with him. You?

    1. Its sooo good to hear from you! If you’re of a mind to do this, read K. Dabrowski, a Polish psychiatrist who became expert in what he called “Over-excitabilites”. He will blow your mind. Also, Google “Highly Sensitive People” who, like us, just KNOW stuff.

      I’ve been working with my therapist for over 30 years. She “groks” with me. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grokking You know? Over the years, she’s has come to know what I mean when I say I a geometric understanding of emotions…its a little like seeing the world in genograms. More. I “see” the relationships…like chess…there are a limited probable set of moves. You do “diagnosis”, I do the square roots of “squares”.

      I know! “Get out the strait jackets, here he goes again.” But its 40 years doing this work, and I know what I know. And by now, she doesn’t look at me with curiosity. We say, “Geometry”, and we wink! Its “Niagara Falls…Slowly I Turn”, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slowly_I_Turned!

      Synathesia? I’m studying it in my class. Who know.

      I have too many parentheses open! Where was I?

      Yes…all the same process. We’re all in process. We’re all trying to be…dare I say it…normal. In the old days, we’d be wizards. Today we’re on medication.

      TD

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