Do you find crowds rather overwhelming? Do loud noises have a tendency to startle or even panic you? Do you prefer to play solo sports instead of team sports? If you answered yes to these questions then it’s possible that you could be hypersensitive. In this article, we are going to explore the Hypersensitive Personality.
Misconceptions of a hypersensitive Personality
We’ll take a look at how this is different from HSP (highly sensitive person). We’ll cover the basics of what this concept is before going on to look at some signs you’re a highly sensitive person or a hypersensitive person. Don’t worry if you have no knowledge whatsoever about what a hypersensitive person is, we’ll start with the absolute basics.
The first thing we have to clarify before we even begin to discuss a hypersensitive personality is the difference between being a sensitive, shy or introverted individual in comparison and being a hypersensitive person. The confusion lies with the shared traits.
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Without delving too deep into the hyper personality right now, there are a couple of things we can consider that connect the different personality types. For example, if we stick with the first question posed at the start of this article, do you find crowds overwhelming?
It could very well be that you do find crowds overwhelming, but this could be more connected to you being an introvert or having had a bad experience within a crowd in the past rather than being hypersensitive.
Similarly, do you prefer to play solo sport over team sports? Again, this may imply that you have a hypersensitive personality but it is just as likely to imply that you’re a competitive person who prefers to achieve 100% of the victory, even if it means you might have to take 100% of the defeat.
It’s important that we make these distinctions clear to begin with because the rest of this article will at times seem to describe simply an introvert rather than a hypersensitive individual. We’ll try to make the differences clear as we go.
Highly Sensitive vs hypersensitivity personality
Just to confuse matters further, we need to discuss the very slight difference between an HSP highly sensitive person and a hypersensitive person. The real difficulty is that there are next to no visible differences between these two types of people. The only notable difference is a biological one.
For HSPs, tests involving fMRI machines have demonstrated that the area of the brain that deals with both empathy and sensory information react differently when compared to people who aren’t HSPs.
The same cannot be said when testing hypersensitive individuals as it seems that there is no biological difference between them and people without hypersensitivity.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t make telling the two apart any easier and short of getting a brain scan, there would be no real way of knowing whether you have a hypersensitivity personality or are highly sensitive. We’re now going to take a look at the various traits of each group.
Hopefully, this will make the slight differences between the two a little more obvious. We’ll start with HSPs and then move onto hypersensitive traits.
Highly Sensitive Personality Traits
So when it comes to being highly sensitive, there are a few traits that you can keep an eye out for. Of course, you could ask for a brain scan but typically people can tell just from viewing these traits.
If you’re highly sensitive, then it is likely that you startle easily either as a result of loud noises or simply from something unexpected happen.
For example, you might walk around the corner and get a fright when somebody is standing there. You can typically pick up on smells, hear sounds, and feel sensations that would be too quiet, dim or light for others to notice. This also means that you’re overwhelmed easily.
This sense of being overwhelmed is particularly true in crowds and you’ll find that you can’t enjoy yourself at a concert or club if there are too many people. In a sense, they find it difficult to tune out any external sensation which poses a major problem when trying to go about day to day life, particularly within a city.
You have high levels of empathy and this can lead to you being very upset by the mood of others. On the other hand, it makes you a great teacher, counselor or therapist as you can really connect to what the other person is telling you.
Hypersensitive Personality Traits
For those of you who may have a hyper personality, these are the traits that typically show up within a hypersensitive personality. You struggle to control your emotions but more specifically, you struggle to control your reactions.
You’ll blow things way out of proportion without realizing it. It doesn’t help that it takes very little to trigger such a response.
You may be described as having a short fuse. Similarly to the highly sensitive person, you find yourself being easily overwhelmed.
However, this is because you take on too much at one time and don’t admit defeat until you’re being crushed under the weight of your responsibilities.
You have a keen eye for detail, which wouldn’t usually be a bad thing, but alongside your other hypersensitive traits, it means that you over-analyze yourself and others. If you’re not presented in a perfect light then you get mad at others and if someone else drops the ball then you can’t control your reaction, which is usually anger.
You choose to work on your own because then you don’t need to alter your methods in order to co-operate. It’s impossible for you to listen to criticism without taking it personally and when you combine that with your short temper, it makes improving skills very challenging for you.
Finding a Solution to being Hypersensitive
If you believe that you are a hypersensitive person then you may be looking for a solution. There are two simple approaches that you can take to conquering your hypersensitive personality. The first thing you can do is the 5-second method. This is where you count to 5 whenever you feel yourself getting angry or impatient.
If you still feel the same way at the end of the 5 seconds then you do it again, and again, until you feel more relaxed. This allows the hypersensitive part of your brain calm down and allows the rational part to take control. The second approach is to incorporate meditation into your life. Just start off by doing 10 minutes a few times a week and see if it helps.