I believe everyone is born sensitive and that we remain so until we are at least six or seven years. After that age, differences start to emerge. Some of us keep being highly sensitive, while others shut down their sensitivity in order to survive or cope better with their life’s circumstances. This shut down can also happen as a result of experienced trauma, family dynamics as well as individual (e.g. personality), environmental, and cultural aspects.
I have been a highly sensitive person all my life, but I have only become conscious of it over the last five years of my existence. Being a highly sensitive person means you feel and you think deeper about your inner and outer reality, because your brain is wired differently when compared to the vast majority (80-85%) of other human beings. Your cognitive capacity is ready to process information using much more filters and making more complex connections between concepts, ideas and facts.
Since feelings are mainly generated by thoughts and beliefs, deeper thinking leads to a greater variety of feelings and emotional experiences. As you can guess, such intense subjective experiences can leave highly sensitive people extremely tired, overwhelmed, and even frustrated about themselves and life in general. Not everything is bad though. Highly sensitives, or empaths, can also tap into and benefit from positive energies faster than others. Hence, the trick for sensitives is to be aware and always managing their energy.
In order to successfully manage your energy as a sensitive, you must pay attention to five important aspects at least: sleep, food, fresh air, quiet time, and meaningful activities. I will address each one of these aspects next.
Sleep is a very important aspect to monitor as a highly sensitive person – if not the most important one. I have talked about the importance of sleep for wellbeing here on the blog and I can only say that empaths can’t be careless about the quantity and quality of their sleep. If you are not well rested, you are an easy host for unwanted guests such as toxic energy, anxiety, stress, mistakes, and conflicts. Make sure you have enough rest and that you sleep throughout the most beneficial time for your body to recover and heal (somewhere between 10PM and 8AM).
You are what you eat and you know that. The more conscious you become of your sensitivity, the more you notice the impact of food on your bodily systems and overall performance. I always recommend wholemeal foods and eating as raw as possible as long as you know that the food you are eating is safe and as much chemical free as possible. The way you eat is also very important. Do your best to eat slowly and enjoy your food to the maximum. Practising mindful eating can help you this.
Highly sensitives are incredibly influenced by environmental issues such as electromagnetic pollution (e.g. mobile phone radiation). As such, we know for a fact that going outside, even if for just a brief walk, can do wonders for our health and wellbeing. Removing ourselves from home and going on a small adventure to the closest garden or park can be life saving some times. It not only recalibrates our bodily systems as it also refreshes our cognitive capacity.
When the going gets tough, we need to retreat. The ideal situation though is to prevent an emergency exit by planning and giving ourselves some quiet time. This means we remove ourselves to a quieter place, where we won’t be preferably disturbed either by other people or technological distractions such as our phone ringing. The best quiet time, I believe, is to do nothing and just be, but I also like to perform some soothing activities such as gentle yoga, meditation or spiritual light reading.
To function properly, empaths need to calibrate and ground their energy, but they also need to generate positive energy for themselves, so that they can keep their cup full. This is possible through what I will call here meaningful activities. These are activities that generate a great deal of positive emotions and feelings in you. They can be hobbies or passions of yours. The important to retain here is that they need to be activities that really lift you up. For me, writing a blog post is one my meaningful activities.