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Archive for June, 2012

      We’re quiet, too quiet for the extroverts’ liking…often appearing to be off in our own little world.  Wool-gathering, perhaps?  Or are we engaged in plotting something as extroverts presume we’re doing because we’re not talking?

      There’s a grain of truth regarding ‘plotting’… 

      Some of us introverts and HSPs (high sensitive people) may just be plotting a short story or novel or gathering ideas for a poem, or writing songs.  A high percentage of Introverts and HSPs are very creative: art, music, photography, and writing, both fiction and non-fiction.  Our innate traits lend themselves well to creative pursuits: vivid imaginations, intuitive, observant, and empathic: in my case, it is writing, photography and art, in that order.    

      How are my introverted and highly sensitive traits used when creating?  Well, my imagination is very vivid and can visualize both characters and situations with not a whole lot of difficulty…asking ’what if’ is non-stop;)  Observing people, studying how they look, behave, and speak is invaluable when developing characters that are believable.  Do I ever base characters on real people?  Not a specific person, but taking traits from a number of individuals to create a unique character is very common among writers, including me.  Being empathic, sensing what others feel without a word spoken, is a unique ability: using this ability in fiction by picking up what is not said between characters and conveying that in a story. 

     Photography is another of my passions that incorporates so many of the introvert and high sensitivity traits. The ability to observe, noticing details that perhaps are missed by a great many people during the course of a day.  Being able to see what is unique about a subject and sensing some kind of energy in an environment makes for special photographs of familiar scenes that make other people utter ‘I never noticed that before’.  I noticed something about that subject that others might not ever see because my brain is wired differently; it’s as simple as that.  The same traits used in photography are also used in my third passion, art, so won’t go into these again.

 

Now that you know what goes on in this introvert’s brain when she’s being quiet, does this information change your perceptions about her personality?  Hopefully;))   Tomorrow, samples of poetry, photography, art, etc with some background as to how they came into being…   

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What does ‘Highly Sensitive’ mean to you?  Does the image of someone who is deeply wounded emotionally by someone who hurts their feelings?  That could be true; however, High Sensitivity is far more complex. It is innate and physiological.   Research indicates a Highly Sensitive Person’s (HSP) brain and nervous system are wired differently than other people: HSPs are acutely aware of and attuned to themselves and other people and their environment.  While browsing on-line last evening, I found the perfect description of high sensitivity on architectureofmeaning.com:  “…it can feel like you are living without insulation – with your nerves exposed.”  That is exactly how it feels – and it can be very intense!!   

      The traits of a highly sensitive person (HSP)may include – each person will be affected slightly differently, though: easily overwhelmed by strong sensory input; aware of subtle changes in their environment; other people’s moods and energies; bright lights,  strong smells, loud noises; rich complex inner life; super-conscientious; startle easily; get rattled when there is a lot to do in a short period of time; avoids making mistakes; avoid watching violent tv shows and movies; when competing or being observed when performing a task, the person becomes so nervous and shaking that they do much worse than otherwise.  Some HSPs experience their strongest feelings empathically: feeling everything that the people around them feel: this is true for me. I feel everything the people around me feel very intensely. If people around me feel animosity, dislike, jealousy, envy, nervousness or anxiety, for example, I feel it instantly and know who it’s directed toward.  Likewise, if people are feeling happy, positive, optimistic, I feel that too.  It’s very like the sensation you get that someone is staring at you and you look, finding that is indeed the case.  The sensations HSPs have when feeling others’ emotions are more intense and deeper, though. At least they are for me, though I cannot speak for other HSPs.  However, I would suspect this might be true for other HSPs who experience their feelings empathically. 

     HSPs comprise 15-20% of the population and of the 15-20%, 70% of those are introverts.  It was after reading Elaine Aron’s “The Highly Sensitive Person” that I realized I am an HSP.  Last year, I discovered I am an introvert after taking a Myers-Brigg personality inventory.  I think I’ll refrain from taking more quizzes for the time being, apprehensive about what will be revealed;)    

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