There are times we can get annoyed with our Highly Sensitive Trait and feel like it’s more of a hindrance than an asset.
It’s normal to feel this way at times, as we face more challenges than a non-HSP.
We are “different” but different in the way that creates positive and progressive differences in our own lives as well as in society, in a way that no one else can.
Our particular genetics don’t limit us but opens up new possibilities to use our abilities to create and experience extraordinary things in life.
So knowing, focusing on, and using your highly sensitive strengths is a good strategy.
Let’s dive into the benefits of having the Highly Sensitive Person Trait.
1. We are better at spotting and avoiding errors
Have you ever noticed the extra pinch of salt, the slight change in color, or that single degree rise in temperature that you can change to make things perfect, and which in turn brings magic?
Noticing subtle differences is a unique quality that people admire. And not everyone can do this.
Our nervous systems are genetically wired to pick up on more information.
We have more activity in some regions of our brain that are associated with more complex processing.
According to Dr. Elaine Aron, “Our awareness of subtleties is useful in an infinite number of ways, from simple pleasure in life to strategizing our response based on our awareness of others’ nonverbal cues (that they may have no idea they are giving off) about their mood or trustworthiness.”
Our ability to spot patterns and deviations in patterns allows us to create minute changes that make a big difference, as well as see the bigger picture.
2. Creative thinkers
“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive.” — Pearl S. Buck
But what does creativity have to do with sensitivity? How are they linked?
According to a study, Cortical areas linked to attention and processing perceptual data in HSPs show higher activation in response to all kinds of stimuli, making them unique observers and more prone to developing a different point of view.
When we work with our trait, we often take breaks as required and spend time in solitude to recenter and recharge ourselves.
Highly Sensitives often have a vivid dream life and can access inspiration from their dreams.
The highly sensitive see things in ways others don’t and are among the world’s greatest innovators and creative problem-solvers.
3. Great at tasks that require fine motor movements
In addition to the five primary senses, i.e., eyes, nose, ears, smell, and touch, there are two more to it, Body awareness and Balance.
HSPs have an edge over this too.
Our awareness of our surroundings and our ability to process information means we can do delicate or fragile things in a very smooth way.
We notice the nuanced differences, making it easy for us to translate these minor, delicate differences for others, whether through art, speaking, singing, or writing.
We can excel at sewing, sculpting, drawing, or playing a musical instrument—anything requiring movements produced by the body’s small muscle groups.
4. Able to think about subjects deeply and make exciting connections
Highly Sensitives notice everything in-depth, uncovering it layer by layer, patiently think about it, and can find the core.
We are great at reading between the lines and thinking beneath the surface level.
Thinking is a process that starts with a sensation, through which we recall all the memories associated with that sensation.
Furthermore, our brain develops connections between memories and present thought, bringing in understanding.
We have a more active ‘Insula,’ the part of the brain responsible for self-awareness and enhanced perception.
We gather loads of information and transition through thoughts patiently. We are born experts in this process.
Our senses combine feelings with intellectual thinking, resulting in profound conclusions and valuable thoughts.
5. Compassion and empathy
According to some studies, our brain shows more mirror neurons (which allow people to “mirror” the behaviors of others and be more empathetic), which makes us feel both positive and negative emotions more intensely.
This gives us an additional advantage in leadership roles.
We can make better decisions as to whether it’ll benefit others or not.
We notice when one of our team is quiet or behaving in a subtly different way from the way they usually do.
We can relate to others genuinely and effortlessly.
We can quickly tell how the person is feeling and help them.
Not just humans, we can also easily create these connections with animals, making us great at being an “animal whisperer.”
6. Adjustment and adaptation skills
This is not a genetic trait, but we develop this habit over time as we adjust to extreme conditions frequently.
A loud environment, harsh weather, toxic behaviour, over-stimulation, and anxiety are things we deal with regularly, and we’ve learned many hacks to adjust through these situations.
With time and mindfulness, we can become stronger as we deal with such situations and become resistant.
Adjustment and adapting skills are skills not many people possess, and very few can accommodate sudden changes or difficulties.
This skill makes us self-confident and develops our courage to take significant risks and challenges in life.
7. Rational judgments and selections
Being able to think deeply and sense the feelings of others, we tend to make significant decisions.
We’re excellent at collaborating and creative problem-solving.
Be it selecting a gift for your best friend or selecting the best pair of jeans for yourself, we make the most rational choices, according to preferences and likings.
Our brains are fine-tuned to noticing and interpreting other people.
We understand what others might be wanting from us, and hence, we act better accordingly.
8. Non-materialistic and spiritual behaviour
We are hardwired to experience everything more deeply and intensely.
This intensity opens up the gates for spirituality and discovering the various truths and purposes of life.
Spirituality means different things to everyone, but at it’s fundamental level it’s about being concerned with the human spirit or soul, as opposed to material or physical things.
We don’t give much importance to first-world problems and focus on what’s valuable and truthful.
We tend to avoid materialistic behavior and choose a simple and straightforward lifestyle.
We identify our actual needs and let everything go aside.
Doing this can allow us to focus all of our energies in a beneficial direction, whether it’s work, health, fitness, relationship, philanthropy, etc.
These eight benefits are just a sample of the many ways highly sensitives benefit from having the HSP Trait.
Focusing on our strengths, being grateful we have them, using them to benefit ourselves and others is one way to honor our trait.
Which of these benefits do you notice the most in yourself?