A Highly Sensitive Person (HSP) refers to someone who experiences external and internal stimuli intensely. This person has a more sensitive nervous system than others and can be easily overwhelmed by what they take in.
And the question we are asking you today is: Are you a Highly Sensitive Person?
Because if you are, you may have grown up hearing one or all of these phrases:
- You are too sensitive
- Why are you always so emotional?
- Toughen up
- You are so soft
- Will you stop crying over something so small?
And so on.
We have a free quiz to help you know if you are a Highly Sensitive Person. It will only take you a few minutes to complete. And at the end of the quiz, you will know how you score on the HSP scale.
But before we get to it, here are five quick facts about the Highly Sensitive Person you need to know.
5 Quick Facts about the Highly Sensitive Person
1. Being an HSP is an inborn trait.
According to Dr. Elaine Aron, the pioneer behind the HSP trait, Highly Sensitive Persons (HSPs) possess the High Sensitivity trait.
It is the same trait we call the HSP trait or, as is scientifically known, Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS).
And according to Dr Aron’s and other subsequent research studies, this trait is innate. It’s not acquired or developed over time.
But your environment and life experiences determine how the trait affects your life, positively or negatively.
2. Being Highly Sensitive is 100% Normal.
The Highly Sensitive Person trait is present in 20-30% of the population. So if the world’s population is 7.8 billion, at least 1.6 billion people are Highly Sensitive.
Narrow these numbers down to your country, workplace, and family, and you’ll see that being a Highly Sensitive Person is not so rare.
Would you then call this HSP trait abnormal?
You would not!
3. It’s Easy to Misunderstand Sensitive People
While the Highly Sensitive Person trait is common and found in up to 30% of the population, it remains misunderstood by the 70% majority. And sometimes, even by the same sensitive people with the trait.
We Highly Sensitive People have been called shy, fearful, inhibited, introverted, neurotic, etc. Yet, as Dr. Aron explains, it is not innate for sensitive people to do so.
Because you learn to be shy and fearful, and 30% of HSPs are extroverted.
So while you may show signs of shyness, introversion, and fear, your High Sensitivity trait has nothing to do with these traits.
4. The Highly Sensitive Person is Prone to Low Self-esteem
While not all HSPs are (or have been) victims of low self-esteem, those who grow up in environments where High Sensitivity is not appreciated tend to have low self-esteem.
And because many cultures worldwide value toughness over being sensitive, there’s a high chance that, as an HSP, you have felt abnormal and struggled with low self-esteem.
5. Highly Sensitive People are More Easily Overwhelmed
As an HSP, you notice and take in every detail around you. This fact may cause you to be overwhelmed faster than a non-HSP.
And the reason for this is that your brain tends to process the information it takes in much more deeply than others.
So, for instance, while a non-HSP may see an ambulance pass by and almost immediately forget about it, you, an HSP, may dwell on it longer.
You may fixate on the sirens. And then start to think about the person in the ambulance.
You may wonder: Is the person in a critical condition? Will the person make it? Do they have a family? If yes, they must be worried. And if not, that is so sad.
And then go on to feel sad about how sad the situation is.
By the time your brain returns to the present, you are so overwhelmed that you need to take a moment to transition back to what you were doing.
And Now, The Free Highly Sensitive Person Quiz
You are undoubtedly a Highly Sensitive Person if you’ve read this far and relate to everything (or some) of the facts we’ve mentioned.
But for certainty, take this free sensitivity quiz to confirm where you fall on the sensitivity scale.
And to also know some of the characteristics you possess because you’re an HSP. Like being affected by bright lights, crowds, loud noises, clothing tags, etc.
In the End
If your score on the free HSP quiz is high, know that being a Highly Sensitive Person isn’t bad. It’s not a sign of weakness or a curse.
In fact, as an HSP, you can be the strongest person in the room. You can learn to live fully and thrive in this world, even if it’s not set up for sensitive people, just as most HSPs are now doing.
And to get started on this journey and finally thrive as a Highly Sensitive Person, check out these free resources:
- Tools to help the sensitive thrive in a chaotic world (free masterclass)
- A letter to explain High Sensitivity to your family and friends (free download)
- How to set healthy boundaries as an HSP (free masterclass)
And then check out this vault of affordable resources for the Highly Sensitive Person.
With love and kindness,