Dr. Amy Stark
Child Psychologist, Author & Speaker
Teaching Families How to Live Divorced
and Self-Esteem for Girls and Boys
Food For Thought
The Sensitive Soul
Sensitivity can be both a blessing and a curse. When someone is sensitive they are usually keenly aware of the feelings and social nuances of everyone around them. Not only can they describe what is happening socially, often times they can actually feel for themselves how others are feeling. When you are sensitive there are some things you can do to protect yourself from overwhelm and over load.
1. It's important to not take every nuance to heart. Your self esteem is a precious gift that you do not give away so freely. Do not take responsibility for everyone’s feelings. Just because you are aware of what someone else might be feeling does not mean you need to feel responsible for it. Use your awareness as the gift it is. Maybe those feelings your friend has are something THEY need to experience for their own personal growth. SUPPORT them through it…that's all you need to do.
2. Make sure that you protect yourself from overload. If you are sensitive you can easily feel overwhelmed with too much stimulation. Know when you have had enough and make sure that you get actual down time. Being alone is a blessing, to be used for re-grouping and putting life back in perspective.
3. Find a task or bring a friend. When you put yourself in a social situation either find a task that gives you a comfort zone (like being in charge of the punch bowl, or passing out something) that creates a buffer for you…or take along a very extroverted friend who can pave the way for you with their natural outgoing nature.
4. Keep to a life in balance. Make sure that you treat yourself well and don’t push yourself too hard for too long a period of time without a break. Find a hobby that will bring you joy and make sure that you engage in it regularly.
And remember…it's okay to be delicate but you also want to be tough when needed. Actress Loretta Young was often called the iron butterfly…and that's what you can create for yourself.
Dr. Stark's Web site is not intended to take the place of a court-ordered advice or the advice of another professional. Although you may use the input found here to your best advantage, we recommend that you do so in conjunction with the work that you are doing with your individual therapist. Remember: this Web site is not therapy; it's knowledge and support.
Psychologist License PSY7828, California213 E City Place Drive
Santa Ana, CA 92705