How to find balance as a Highly Sensitive Person

Being a HSP (Highly Sensitive Person) can present many challenges. Moving from one over stimulating experience to another can be overwhelming and exhausting on the best of days. It is important to learn tools to help you navigate through life with more ease, feeling empowered and confidence with your ability to cope no matter what the situation presents.

Since I can remember I also struggled with loud noises, crowds of people, smells and an over abundance of stimulation often overwhelmed me. As a child I knew no different and thought everyone experienced life in such a loud and intense manner. It was in my 30’s I discovered how different I am from others. I notice the smallest shifts in energy and experience everything at high frequency. This awareness has helped me to work towards finding ways to release my anxiety and find balance. Instead of losing myself in these experiences I learned to empower myself into embracing this unique and beauty gifts of sensitivity. There are many tools I have utalized to help me in this journey. I hope in sharing this it may help someone else change their perception from seeing these sensitivities as gifts instead of a burden.

1: Self care practices. Practicing some form of self care every single day, is so important to help you stay balanced so that you can handle the world around you more easily. “We can’t pour from an empty cup.” -as the saying goes. Finding those self care practices are important in preventing anxiety as well as helping you ground back down when feeling drained from the outside world. Find something that you enjoy that feels comforting and grounding. Whether that is physical activity like biking, hiking or yoga, reading, journaling, creative art, or meditation, find what you love do it as often as you need.

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2: Pick your circle of friends carefully. Surround yourself with supportive people. People that understand your needs and will not take offence to you bowing out of an event because you are feeling overwhelmed. These are the people that will lift you up and encourage you to embrace your unique gift instead of criticizing it as a weakness.

3: Do things that make you happy. Go on an adventure hiking, or travelling. Try something new and exciting. It can be exhausting living in a world that wasn’t made for sensitive souls so taking time to find the joy in the chaos is a great way to see the silver lining on those more difficult days.

4: Time alone. This is an important way for a HSPs to rebalance. If you are feeling overwhelmed and the world is closing in on you, the best things to do is to sneak away somewhere quiet. Close the door, bury yourself in your covers and block out any stimulation. Take as long as you need to breath and calm the nervous system by shutting out the outside world. This isn’t running away from life, but a way of pressing the pause  to refocus your energy.

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5: Cleansing your space. Keeping you energetic space cleansed is very important. Unlike empaths a HSP do not tend to take on energies from others but if you are like me and you are both a HSP and an empath this is a must to staying healthy. You can cleanse your space by burning sacred smoke like sage, palo santo or sweet grass. You can cleanse your space with selenite or rock salt. Finding what works best for you, and do it as much as you need to.

6: Setting energetic boundaries. This can be done in many different ways. Before you go out into the world, you can visualize that you have roots growing deep into the earth that helps ground you. Or imagine that you are in a bubble and you have created this safe space that is calming that no amount of stimulation can break through. Taking some of these visualizations with you as means to create a space of control and safety to help you better navigate through all the stimuli.

7: Holistic tools. You can use grounding crystals to carry with you, or practice breathing techniques and mini meditations if you find yourself in overwhelming situations. Make sure that you not only utilize these tools when you are out in the world but also as a way of grounding back down when you come home. Having a salt bath, burning sage or listening to calming music are just a few ideas that can help bring you back into balance after a long and overwhelming day.

8: Boundaries. This is the most important things to understand and set straight especially as a HSP. Saying “no” is not only o.k it is NECESSARY for a healthy mind, and emotional state. Learning where you need to draw the line will depend on what you are  comfortable with. Best advice is to listen to your intuition, if you feel resistance in any way it most likely is a sign that you need to set up a boundary.

9: Connect to your needs regularly and honour them. Spending time throughout the day to connect to yourself and your needs. Honour what ever comes to the surface as your intuition guiding you back to equilibrium. Make sure to follow through taking the necessary actions to treat and prevent feelings of anxiety and exhaustion.

10: Spending time in nature. Fill your soul up by spending time in nature. When we escape the busyness of the city and get away from the noise, the electronics, and the pollutants we can rebalance ourselves faster then doing anything else. Nature is the only place free of all of that buzzing that can effortlessly put you into the parasympathetic nervous system. Slowing everything down and allowing a safe space to just be and breathe.

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These practices are not only beneficial for HSPs but anyone looking to find more balance in life. Pick the things that speak to your needs and adjust them accordingly. We are all different so take time find what works best for you so you can begin to embrace your unique gifts and beautiful sensitivities.

Connecting Back to Your Authentic Truth

We live in a society that has become accustomed to detachment. Detachment from each other, from ourselves and the world around us. Floating from one thing to another always running on empty. How often do we find ourselves or the ones around us saying, “I don’t have time to think, or eat or sleep?” Sadly this has become the “norm.” Chasing something we never really catch up to. Always behind at work, school, home life, never slowing down enough to rest, to reconnect. We are so busy running we lack the time to ask ourselves, “What am I feeling? What do I need? What is it I want?” Asking those questions and having the time and space to explore the answers can seem far from possible most days.

I know this feeling of disconnection all too well. It was last year when I hit “rock bottom” that I finally gave myself permission to stop and sit with what I was feeling and experiencing. It was during this time I began therapy. It was by far one of the best things I ever did for myself. It was in those first few sessions I faced some hard truths. There I was sitting in my third session when my therapy asked me what seemed to be a simple question, ” What is it that you want? What is it that makes YOU happy?” For the first time ever in my life I didn’t know what to say. I was completely speechless. How could I possibly not know who I was and what I wanted? How could I be so disconnected?

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So how can we reconnect to ourselves and our authentic truth? How do we find the time in this busy world to explore the answers to these very important questions, so we can begin to create the life we truly want and desire? Here are some ways that helped me strengthen that bond to myself and find that deeper understand to my truth.

  1. Take 5 minutes a day to journal: This is something everyone has the time to do. It is best to do this in the morning before you start your day. Take a moment to ask yourself these questions and write down the answers in your daily journal. Ask yourself, “How am I feeling today physically, mentally and emotionally?” And then ask yourself, “What is it I need to do to help myself feel better today?” The answers can be simple, but make them as detailed as you can. Make your goals reasonable and attainable, so you feel like you are making steps forward in the right direction. Remember to take a few minutes at the end of the day to look back on what you wrote and see how your physical, emotional, and mental states have changed throughout the day.
  2. Get out in nature: This can be as simple as going for a ten minute walk or it can be as elaborate as taking a day trip to the mountains and going on a hiking adventure. Whatever you chose to do, go somewhere that you love, that’s quiet and away from the buzzing of the outside world. Wherever you find yourself take time to allow your thoughts to slow down so you can turn inward and connect with who you are outside of all the labels and pressures of the world. Not only does going in nature helps us reconnect to ourselves but it helps to strengthen the relationship we have to the world around us, to something much bigger. 
  3. Take 5-10mins to meditate: Doing a meditations on connections can help to bring your focus inward. Find a guided meditation that really speaks to you and take a few moments to reconnect to your body, mind and breath.
  4. Practice yoga: You don’t have to be able to twist into a pretzel to be able to practice yoga. There are many different types of yoga and many modifications for people from all walks of life with physical limitations and different body types, making yoga accessible to all. Taking time on your mat allows you the safe space to explore how your body feels as you move from one posture to the other. It also allows for a supported place for emotions to be released.
  5. Practice mindfulness: Slow down enough to become mindful of what you are doing throughout the day. Take time to really tune into this human experience. Noticing the little things like the saltiness of the celery in your salad or the warmths of the hot shower. Reconnect to all your senses.
  6. Lastly, always find love and compassion for where you are at in this moment: Reconnecting to yourself can bring up some uncomfortable feelings and emotions. As difficult as this can be it is necessary for healing and personal growth. Give yourself permission to feel and experiences these emotions and thoughts with love and compassion for yourself, fully accepting yourself as you are.

These are a few key practices that helped me to reconnect to myself during my recovery. It was when I started to facilitate these daily practices I could begin to explore who I was in more depth, and discover the kind of life I truly wanted to live.

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I believe healing this world needs to start with healing ourselves first. When we understand ourselves more deeply and find acceptance and love for this human experience we can begin to find compassion and understanding for those around us more easily. This is when we can begin to show up for the world in the most loving way.