Being Highly Sensitive can be challenging and often difficult to embrace the finer aspects of this beautiful trait. Here are some of the strengths and qualities that HSP’s tend to have in an effort to understand some of the ways they can help round out our society.
It is important to note that the HSP often possesses a depth of processing that may run deeper than the average person where analysis of information tends to be more elaborate. This often accounts for reasons why the HSP is able to quickly find solutions, realize unique outcomes, and generate ideas that creatively contribute to problem-solving.
Intuitive- Quite often the HSP has a keen sense of their surroundings with the ability to pick up on subtleties in the environment. This may come in the form of sensing others moods, a general “feel” of a group in terms of cohesiveness, and offers a quick gauge of the “temperature” of a situation. Intuition may be thought of as a greater sense of awareness – a function to help reduce stress and anxiety- where an individual connects with internal thoughts in an effort to make decisions as to how to proceed in a situation. In some ways, it can be akin to a built-in safety function - scanning the environment in order to help develop an understanding of what step to take next.
Hard-working- The HSP is likely determined to not only do the job but do it correctly and thoroughly. This tends to stem from the “perfectionist” way of thinking and is more about ensuring every last detail is accounted for when completing work. It is an innate need to produce quality outcomes.
Loyal- An HSP often believes in making solid, deeper connections with others, an important aspect that is based on trusting relationships. Loyalty is also inherent in may HSP’s and prefer long-lasting friends rather than acquaintances. (If someone you know is highly sensitive and they recommend a business, more than likely it’s because they have developed a loyalty based on several positive aspects of that business versus just conveniences they offer.)
"(HSP’s) can be great leaders in the right environments, able to relate to a lot of different types of people… They have great ideas, creative, are the first to
notice things, can make deep connections, and are aware."
-Sharon Chan, LMFT - www.sharonchanlmft.com
Creative/Inventive- A Highly Sensitive Person is able to quickly inventory a problem and consider several different aspects that non-HSP individuals may not initially see. Because the HSP mind functions by understanding connections to things with detail, usually rather rapidly, they have the ability to reach more creative solutions to problems. In the arts, creative HSP’s thrive as they tend to connect with deeper meanings often evoking emotion in their work.
Nurturing- With high sensitivity, since there is a tendency to have greater, deeper connections with people-they are typically those with a maternal/paternal persona. An HSP often “absorbs” others emotions, experiencing their pain, longing to bring comfort to those around them in pain and will make efforts to help others find comfort.
Insightful- Many HSP’s may have considerable insight into situations likely because of a combination of their strengths- empathy/sympathy and intuition. They may come from a place of thinking “If this were me...” It may also be attributed somewhat to seeing situations with great detail and potential outcomes, which often is a very natural process for them.
Thoughtful/Considerate- Much like understanding how insightful an HSP may be, empathy and sympathy are strong factors when it comes to thoughtfulness. Being highly sensitive carries such a heavy amount of empathy and sympathy that you will most likely encounter an HSP to be the first to offer up a chair in a full room, notice the chilly draft from a nearby vent, and discover ways to help others feel comfortable.
Gifted Thinkers- With a tendency for a creative mind, the HSP is known to be passionate about their endeavors. For some, it is a hunger to learn as much as possible about something in addition to having a perfectionist way of executing their talents. Many HSP’s can be found in the arts- acting, singing, and dance. Others may be found in humanitarian professions, striving to create a better world for everyone.
Attentive Listeners- As mentioned previously, the highly sensitive are passionate about nurturing those around them so they have a natural ability to listen well, especially in deeper conversations. Learning about people comes easily to the HSP- it ignites their curiosity, deep connection to others, and simultaneously feeds the quick connections occurring in their mental and intellectual processing.
Listing many of these strengths is not to say that others do not possess the same. However, for an HSP, the internal impact may be greater than those who may not experience life so deeply. There are a number of ways in which the Highly Sensitive Person brings great contributions to the world. Their presence greatly enhances the necessary balance in life. Overall, it can be challenging to have such great sensitivities and often difficult for the HSP to maneuver through life. However, it is hoped by presenting this list of qualities those who live as a Highly Sensitive Person can take pride in the many strengths they possess.
Creative Pathways- Rochester Art Therapy- specializing in treating the Highly Sensitive Person, is devoted to helping individuals face their struggles in a supportive and gentle way. If you are considering therapy options, Art Therapy may help you achieve your personal goals and develop in-depth solutions. If you would like to learn more and meet with a therapist, please contact us today to determine how we can help.
Sheilagh is an Artist and Art Therapist who believes in healing with art and creativity.