3. Embrace solitude
Solitude is not loneliness, instead, it is a chosen form of being alone, rather than an imposed one. When we choose solitude and take mini-retreats from our stimulating days, we give ourselves the gift of re-cooperation. As highly sensitive people, we need to be in tune with our minds and bodies and the warning signs of burnout, such as irritability and physical exhaustion. So take a bit of alone time to renew yourself
4. Investigate, identify, and act upon your sensitivity triggers
Wouldn’t life be a whole lot easier if we managed to resourcefully alter or intelligently negotiate our way around the stresses and stimulations that come our way? Of course, we can’t plan everything, but for the stresses currently existing in our lives, we can work to plan ahead and alleviate the incoming tension.
As an HSP, I struggled with this, stoically putting up with the extreme anxiety I felt at work until I realized that it was weakening my health. No, I didn’t do something drastic like quit my job, but I did decide to plan ahead and practice self-hypnosis every time I had to go to work, to prepare myself for the day. I still do.
As an HSP, you may be suffering from the same problem I did: a self-sacrificial acceptance of your less-than-healthy response to a situation in life. If you find yourself daily frazzled, try identifying what makes you so stressed out and think about what you can do to actively make your life easier to live. Life wasn’t meant to be bared with gritted teeth.
5 Ways To Stop Emotional Snowballing As A Highly Sensitive Person
Your heart pounds, you begin to tremble, your chest constricts, pain shoots through your core, your mind blurs … and all this, simply as a response to a threat, insult or even a simple tone of voice.
Highly sensitive people frequently live life on the brink of emotional snowballing, a term I use to describe a situation where emotions get out of control and quickly become out of proportion to the situation at hand.
Just think of a small snowball rolling down a very steep hill – it becomes larger and larger and rolls faster and faster very quickly. For many highly sensitive people, this emotional turbulence is a fact of life.
But why? As Elaine Aron pointed out in her book The Highly Sensitive Person, “most of us are deeply affected by other people’s moods and emotions.” In fact, you could say that most highly sensitive people are simply excellent social chameleons to the emotional landscapes around them.
This can be good news if everything is peachy bliss, but many times, highly sensitive people find themselves absorbing the poisonous negativity around them. You could say that the highly sensitive person’s problem is taking things too personally. But it’s much more than that. The highly sensitive person is deeply affected by any highly stimulating situation, whether physical, mental, and emotional.
In a sense, you could say they feel everything at a more extreme level than the non-HSP person. While this can make life a lot more profound for highly sensitive people, it can also make interpersonal relations very bitter indeed.
Below you will find four techniques I have found useful in preventing emotional snowballing. I’m a highly sensitive person myself and hope these will help quell the tidal waves of emotion when they roll your way:
1. Seek out a quiet, empty spot to cool down
As I mentioned before, highly sensitive people suffer a lot at the hands of hyper-arousing and stimulating situations. The best thing to do when you become aware of the symptoms of emotional stress is to remove yourself from the situation. Excuse yourself, or simply walk away from the person or people that are causing you harm and find a deserted, empty place.
I say deserted and empty because the least stimulating, the better. You need to make time to re-cooperate and soften the violent sensations inside of you. I find that the bathroom is usually the best place to go, especially when the lights are out and everything is muted and dim.