During the past few years there has been a lot of research done by doctors and scientists on what they are calling, “Highly Sensitive Persons.”
They now know that between 15-20% of all men and women are “Highly Sensitive Persons.”
This is true in all cultures.
I think it’s so important to note that the conclusions are that this is not a mental disorder.
If you feel like this might describe you or someone you love, watch my video. It might explain a lot.
Does any of this describe you? Or someone you care about? It can make life a little more difficult, but it can be a relief when you figure out that this is what’s going on.
We’ve helped people who are Highly Sensitive; if that’s happening for you, we can help you.
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You are so welcome, Katrina! Isn’t that fantastic? Wouldn’t you love to feel like you can handle anything that comes your way? Do a Soul Adventure and grab onto that feeling!
Again, call us toll-free 1-877-204-3664 (or 01 928-204-5988) or click here and one of our Retreat Guides will call you.
Wishing you a week filled with beautiful sensitivity!
During the past few years, there has been a tremendous amount of research done by scientists and medical doctors on what they are terming “Highly Sensitive Persons.”
The research that has been done has been fascinating:
They now know that between 15%-20% of all men and 15%-20% of all women are “Highly Sensitive Persons.”
This is true in all cultures.
They even know that 15%-20% of all animals are highly sensitive.
They know that particular areas of the brain (such as the amygdala) are activated differently for people who are HSP.
I think one of the most important parts of this is that their findings show that HSP is completely normal. It is not a mental illness or a disorder.
A highly sensitive person experiences the world differently than others. Due to biological differences that they’re born with, Highly Sensitive People are more aware of subtleties and process information deeply. This means they tend to be creative, insightful, and empathetic, but it also means they’re more sensitive to stress and overwhelm.
So on the one hand, it’s great, because they are more creative, insightful and empathetic. But because they are highly sensitive, they stress out more quickly and go into overwhelm more quickly. Plus, they react in a bigger way in certain situations.
There is a fantastic documentary on this called “Sensitive,” based on the findings of Psychologist Dr. Elaine Aron. The movie is really fascinating and it features Alanis Morissette. Alanis Morissette had tremendous success writing songs that were the result of her being a Highly Sensitive Person – she is more creative and has more empathy. But in the movie, she talks about how this has also caused a huge challenge for her because fame brought about so much attention, stress and overwhelm for her. When she finally realized that she is a Highly Sensitive Person, it changed everything.
So how do you know if you’re a highly sensitive person? Here are some of the things Jenne Granneman talks about in her article about HSP:
Overstimulation is a real problem for you.
Because you’re highly sensitive, you react in a bigger way to lots of emotion, stimulus, loud noises, etc.
You’re frequently emotionally exhausted from absorbing other people’s feelings.
Highly sensitive people feel the emotions of others and are very affected by that, and by the end of the day you can be completely exhausted.
Time pressure really rattles you.
In school, timed tests would make you very anxious and it’s another form of overstimulation.
You absolutely abhor violence and cruelty of any kind.
Everyone hates violence and cruelty, but if you’re highly sensitive you might actually get physically ill from watching it or hearing about it.
You’ve always been super sensitive to what you wear.
Nobody likes Scratchy fabric or restrictive clothing, but for you – it drives you crazy.
Your pain tolerance is less.
Many HSPs are more sensitive to pain of all kinds — headaches, body aches, injuries, etc. — than non-HSPs.
Change is extremely upsetting.
Any kind of change, both good and bad, can rattle you.
You get hangry easily.
HSPs tend to be sensitive to changes in blood sugar levels, so they may get quite “Hangry” (hungry + angry) if they haven’t eaten in a while.
Stimulants may be too much for you. Coffee and alcohol may just send you reeling.
Because they have a heightened nervous system, some HSPs are sensitive to caffeine and need very little of it to feel its buzz. Similarly, some HSPs are also sensitive to alcohol’s effects.
Conflict is your poison.
When there’s tension or disagreement in your close relationships, you feel it deeply. Many HSPs even report feeling physically ill during conflict. As a result, some highly sensitive people become conflict-avoidant, doing or saying almost anything to keep the other person happy. It’s because conflict hurts so much.
You’re a deep thinker and highly perceptive.
The cornerstone of being an HSP is you process information deeply. This means you do plenty of reflecting on your experiences — more so than other people. Unfortunately, this also means you’re more prone to negative overthinking. Sometimes you obsessively play events over and over in your mind, or spiral into anxious thoughts.
Because you notice things that others miss, you’re seen as perceptive and insightful.
You’re a seeker.
HSPs seek answers to the big questions in life. They ask why things are the way they are and what their role in all of it is. If you’re a highly sensitive person, you may have always wondered why other people aren’t as captivated by the mysteries of human nature and the universe as you are.
So as you can see, just as Alanis Morisette talks about in the documentary, there are some wonderful things and there are challenges about being a Highly sensitive Person. One of the worst things about it is that this is something that has just been recognized in the past two decades, so not everyone knows about it…so many Highly Sensitive People get misdiagnosed or mislabeled, or are having difficulty and thinking there’s something wrong with them, when all that’s happening is they’re highly sensitive and they need to really take care of themselves, especially around overstimulation and change.
We had a woman here just a few weeks ago and we immediately recognized her as HSP. At first, she had no idea what we were talking about as she, like most people, had not heard about this. She told us her husband was constantly criticizing her for being overly emotional and he would get angry when she would say that a restaurant was just too noisy.
She took the test and scored 24 out of 27. In her very first session, her practitioner used the specific examples of how this was showing up for her and did tapping around each one of these issues. (If you don’t know about Tapping, please watch my video about it, because it is such an amazing process.)
Afterwards, the client said, “For the first time in my life, I feel understood.”
She said she felt relief and was excited about using her new strategies for her life, especially with how to use this with her husband.
Maybe as I say in my book, there’s nothing wrong with you…maybe you’re just Highly Sensitive. You may need to find some ways to navigate that and we can help you with that.
I hope this helped, and if you got value from this video, please take the time to like it, share it with someone in your life who think might get something out of it, subscribe to our channel.
And If you want an even more direct path to having the relationship of your dreams, click here to get your complimentary copy of The Sedona Guide to Spiritual Retreats today.
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You can have the life AND the relationship you want – I know it.
I was lucky enough back then to connect with Jorge Luis Delgado, our shaman and guide. Jorge is a master and as everyone in all my groups always say, they can’t imagine doing Peru without Jorge, that it quite simply wouldn’t be the same. That’s a photo of my fabulous 2008 group.
On my first trip in 2008, I met his wife and son, who at the time was 14, a gangly teenager, and he spoke great English. He and I started talking and sat next to each other on our bus ride from Lake Titicaca to Juliaca.
We started talking about American politics, as the 2008 election was in full swing, and Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton were slugging it out in the primaries. He asked me if I thought it was possible that Obama might be nominated and possibly win, and we had a very spirited and enjoyable conversation.
Jorge told me later, “It’s so strange, I’m not sure how this happened, he’s so interested in American politics and all kinds of things from other countries.”
Over the years, I’ve always asked Jorge how his son was doing and the news just kept getting more and more interesting. He did very well in school, went to University, then ended up living and working in Japan, spent some time in China, and learned to speak Japanese and Chinese fluently. Now this year, he decided to return to Peru and he’s working with Jorge!
He was working with a Chinese group and he came to the airport in Cusco when we were about to depart for Lake Titicaca, and we got to spend some time talking. What a joy to see and feel what an incredible young man he has become.
I asked him why he had returned to Peru and he told me, “I want to really learn all the spiritual teachings.” Isn’t that fantastic? This gangly little kid I met 11 years ago, has become a worldly, accomplished man interested in all aspects of the world, including spirituality. He said he plans to stay here for about two years and then he’ll be off to some other place in the world.
It’s reminiscent of my godson, Anthony, who I also got to see on this trip and what a joy that was. Back in 2008 when we went to Amantani for the first time (a very rustic, beautiful island in Lake Titicaca where at the time they had no electricity and no running water), we did a very special ceremony and we spent the night in the home of his family.
Anthony was 6 months old at the time, a tiny, adorable baby.
I spent a large amount of that evening holding him and at times I was crying gently and processing. His parents, Juana and Joaquin, don’t speak English, but in some way we really connected.
It turns out that two days later they were doing a ceremony with Anthony that is somewhat similar to what we know as baptism.
They asked Jorge to ask me if I would like to be a godmother for Anthony because they felt I had such a strong connection to him. They said they didn’t want any obligation from me, just the spiritual connection. I was honored and the ceremony was very beautiful.
After that, I would see Anthony every year and I’ve also happily contributed to the family and Anthony’s education. This photo is from 2014, when I brought him some blowing bubbles. At that time, Anthony was six and he told me he wanted to become a doctor. He also said he was learning traditional Peruvian dance and he enjoyed that very much.
Starting in 2015, Anthony started going to boarding school on the mainland so that he could receive a really good education, so he was never at home when we would spend the night at Juana and Joaquin’s home on Amantani. But this year, what a surprise. They brought him, along with his sister, to Chiquito where we had a reunion.
He showed me his school Certificate of Excellence and his parents told me what a good student he is. One of the members of our group interpreted (thank you, Rhonda!), and he told me again that he wants to be a doctor and how much he still enjoys dancing. But now he also really enjoys football (soccer).
To think that this boy from a small island, where they have almost no electricity or running water and when you take a walk you continually run into people who are herding sheep and donkeys, is going to become a doctor…this reminded me of Jorge’s son. Anthony’s energy is so sweet and pure, yet he is also a determined little boy and I can’t wait to see how this unfolds.
Another really fun thing we do every year is to go to Seminario Ceramics in Ollantaytambo. Pablo Seminario is one of the premier ceramic artists in the world, his works are displayed in various museums around the world, including the Field Museum in Chicago.
When I brought my first group in 2008, when we were returning from Machu Picchu by train after a very long day, Jorge asked me, “Would you like to go to the ceramics place?” Not having any idea of what an incredible place this was, I said no because everyone was tired.
One of the members of the group, Jennifer Watt, overheard us and said, “What are we talking about?” and I said, “That we’re not going to the ceramics place.” She said to me in her usual very direct way, “Who made that decision?” and I responded that I did. I then said if she wanted to go, we’d go and I am so glad I did. His work is so incredible and over the years, I’ve brought many of his pieces to my home and each year he speaks to our group and we have a wonderful interaction with him and his wife Marilu.
After that trip, Jen and I became great friends and in 2010, I asked her to lead my Peru trip two years in a row (I had Egypt in March, Peru in April and Bali in June, and it was becoming too much to handle), she loved Peru and she had experience leading groups. She did a fantastic job and from that, got a job leading trips to Peru, especially for high school and college students and teachers.
She has now been to Peru 54 times! And one of the things she has incorporated into the tours is an intensive piece of learning about traditional ceramics through Seminario! She, Pablo and Marilu have become great friends.
So when we were there last week, we took a photo of all of us to text to Jen saying, “Wish you were here.” Jen had just been in Sedona the week before visiting us at our home and we showed Pablo this photo of Jen and our friend Ranjita (who had been on the Peru trip with me in 2008 and again last year).
I told Pablo this is the view from our home, and he and Marilu should come and visit us in Sedona. He said, “If Jen will bring me, I will come to Sedona!”
So it’s so incredible to me, all these connections that started with this first trip and have woven their way through my life, and all these other lives, through the years. Not to mention the other close friends I have made through these trips, people who came on the trips, people I love who are a huge part of my life.
Because at the end of the day, all of this is not so much about the sites (although they are absolutely incredible), it’s about the amazing people we share them with and keep connecting with.
This year again, our group has bonded in such a beautiful, special way. One of the women said to me yesterday, “I can’t believe how I love everyone in this group and feel so close to them. Doing this with other like-minded people has just been so wonderful.