Different degrees of sensitivity

Different degrees of sensitivity

Everyone has different degrees of sensitivity. It’s obvious right?

It is obvious and yet it wasn’t so obvious for me.

I’ve always been an extremely sensitive person. Being sensitive made my life very painful sometimes. Just today I was talking with my grandma and she reminded me that she used to get worried when she saw how sensitive I was as a little girl, feeling very deep joy and very deep sadness even when I was very young (I’m speaking 6-7 years old).

When I was a bit older, I felt emotions so intensely that I couldn’t hold them inside. Sometimes it would actually cause me physical pain. For many years I’ve thought it was a curse, a punishment.

Where some people could live life happily and joyfully, I was often shaken by very intense emotions. I couldn’t take anything lightly, I was feeling every experience and every emotion too deep to ignore it.

Where some people could recover from a breakup in a few weeks, it has always taken me months if not years. Where some people can disconnect from negative emotions in a click, I can’t and I keep feeling emotions over and over.

Although i’ve always known I was hypersensitive, I thought that the vast majority was similar to me. Maybe not as sensitive, but I thought that majority of people were feeling victims of their emotions. It occurred to me only recently that there are people who are much much less sensitive than I am and actually control their emotions.

These people learned a very valuable skill (intentionally or unintentionally, I’m not sure about this): they found out how to disconnect from their emotions, how not to feel emotional pain. When they feel it, they can switch it off like a button. To be more accurate, what they do is to numb their feelings, so they don’t feel the pain too much. The kind of feelings they want to numb themselves from are:

  • emotional pain
  • loneliness
  • anger
  • the feeling of missing someone
  • anxiety


I believe that they are not aware of doing it, as I was not aware of being more sensitive than average.

It simply happens that on a scale from 0 to 10, sensitive people feel emotions at a 10, less sensitive people feel the same emotions, but at a level 1 or 2.

Being an “hypersensitive person” who suffered a lot for feeling emotions so intensely, at first i thought that they were just cheating. They were trying to navigate through life hand picking the feelings that they want to feel, and leaving the bad ones out of the table. Too easy, I thought. Then recently something happened to me and I really felt emotions that were too painful to manage. And that’s when I realised that the ability to reduce sensitivity can be a valuable skill. When it’s too much to deal with, more sensitive people can learn from less sensitive people and lessen the intensity of their emotions. NLP actually helped me a lot with that, by playing with images that the mind produces and changing colours, dimensions, proximity and so on.

The problem is that if more sensitive people don’t learn how to lessen the intensity of their emotions when they need it, they become victims of themselves and other people’s emotions. They actually capture and absorb the emotions of the room they’re in, while the less sensitive people are mostly protected from the external influence of other people’s bad energy.

Another example: more sensitive people miss someone they love much faster: they feel the feeling of missing someone much faster because they’re so connected with their internal world, while less sensitive people start to feel that they miss someone much later because they live anesthetized from that pain.

The problem with being hypersensitive is that life can become very stressing, because every experience is very intense: loving someone, missing someone, even happiness can become too intense sometimes and be hard to bear. The problem with being less sensitive, on the other hand, is that life gets boring quickly, because the normal experiences don’t cause any interesting emotions for them. The other big big problem is that less sensitive people cannot empathise with others, because they’re so disconnected from their own feeling that they can’t even imagine how life might feel for another person. They hurt a lot, but unintentionally. They just don’t understand that with their actions, or lack thereof, they actually hurt the people who love them.

Hypersensitive people go through ups and downs many times throughout a single day. They can be very sad and then very happy, and then desperate and then joyful again in the space of a few hours. Their life is pretty exciting, but it also gets very tiring. They need a certain stability (although sometimes they still don’t know it) or else this constant up and down will leave them drained. That’s why they’re often attracted to very stable (and less sensitive) people.

Less sensitive people, on the other hand, don’t feel much, so they normally need to stimulate themselves with big challenges, big risks, overworking, overachieving, extreme sports, drugs or whatever can make them feel something strong. They need to do it on their own, because the feeling of doing it on their own will make them feel something that they actually are happy to feel, like pride or power.

Sensitive people can learn from less sensitive people the skill of lessen their sensitivity when it causes them too much pain. Similarly, less sensitive people can learn from more sensitive people the skill of feeling more, because otherwise they will not be able to enjoy the small things of life, to feel joy, love, passion, happiness, something that we, people who feel “too much” are actually able to experience as a gift of life every single day.

Love, Health and Happiness

About Love, Health and Happiness. And many other things that make your life complete.

I’ve always been interested in health. When you start having painful symptoms you normally get interested in health and that’s what happened to me. I had rheumatic fever when I was around 10 years old (yes, can you believe that?) and I had to get painful injections of cortisone every week. I had to take numerous blood tests and to cope with it I started to train myself into believing I actually liked it.

When I was a teenager I suffered from eating disorders. I often had stomach ache, it was actually the normal condition for me, a permanent stomach ache. On top of that, I was incredibly sad, all the time.

I’ve always been introspective. I started to have a journal as soon as I could write decently. I’ve always observed myself and the way I was experiencing my life very sharply. Nothing was “just fun” or “just a mood change”. No no no, everything had a deep meaning, had to be analysed, dissected, categorised. My feelings, my experiences, my relationships, my choices. I was living every day of my young life very intensely, the good and the bad ones. I couldn’t filter, I was just absorbing every experience (with the emotions they caused) as a sponge.

Many people might disqualify the picture saying that it’s normal, that everyone during teenage feel depressed. But it’s not normal when it endangers your life balance. Sometimes I was so depressed that I would just go to sleep in the middle of the day because it was the only thing I could do to alleviate that pain I felt inside. It was both an emotional and physical pain, and the two sides were so interconnected that I couldn’t tell which one caused the other.

I didn’t know what I had, but by the age of 17 I felt that my life was very, very wrong.

I started to look for answers. My dad is passionate about TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and holistic medicine. So I was lucky enough to have the house full of books about Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, Bach Flowers and so on.

I started to study Bach Flowers, and I liked the idea of using a flower instead of a drug to solve problems. But I was expecting a miracle from these disciplines and the miracle never happened. They didn’t solve my whole situation as I was expecting. I still wasn’t happy, I still wasn’t balanced.

In the meanwhile I was constantly arguing with my parents, to a point where I wasn’t feeling comfortable in my own house anymore.

It was around the age of 19, when I left my parents’ house to move into a “commune” (we were 7 people in a house, some studying some working, some both) that I started my real spiritual journey, a self-discovery path that brought me to understand the deep interconnection between the relationships you have, your mind and your body. I discovered the connection between physical, relational and emotional health. Mainly, I discovered that one is not possible without the others.

As soon as I moved out of my family’s house I realised that I had to take care of myself by myself. And not because my parents stopped loving me, on the contrary. But I simply couldn’t blame them anymore, or the school or the teenage or anything else, for my problems. If you think that the problem is the environment where you live, but you find yourself with the same problem after you move to another environment then you realise that the real issue is not outside, it’s inside you.

But so it the solution.

In that moment I made the conscious decision to start taking care of myself with love, thing that I had never done before. It was thanks to that decision that I started to heal.

I started reading about meditation, and I started practicing meditation 10 minutes every morning. It was the first step in the right direction. I also started to look for healers of every sort. Not doctors, but healers.

A wonderful friend of mine was studying massage, and I she did some shiatzu and craniosacral treatments on me. I also found that another friend of mine was studying kinesiology and neuro-training, and I did some sessions with her as well.

In the meanwhile I received a book from my lovely cousin: “The Artist’s Way: A Course in Discovering and Recovering Your Creative Self“. In the book the author describe an exercise to get in touch with your inner self: when you wake up in the morning write 3 pages of stuff. Just write down whatever is in your mind as soon as you wake up. 3 pages, every morning, before you do anything else. It connects you with your inner self, but more importantly it works as a trash folder. You empty your mind of all the “trash”  of the negative talks that we sometimes start our day with. 

I realised that the way I talked to myself was really, really bad. If I had to say those things to a friend of mine they would have never called me back. But I was saying it to myself. And I was wondering why I wasn’t feeling healthy and happy..

I also started to build connections with the people who were living with me, and the deeper the friendships the more rooted and healthy I felt. We humans are healthy when we live in communities. With no real friends, with no real love, there’s no health.

I started singing in a choir. Singing is for me a form of meditation, a spiritual experience that makes me feel connected with my soul. But singing in a choir is even a stronger experience. Hearing my voice crossing other people’s voice and making a harmonious melody made me feel part of something bigger than myself.

So really health didn’t come from one way. It came firstly from the decision to take care of myself with love, and that decision made me take actions in the right direction. It came from balancing my life on all levels. It came from having good friends. It came from expressing myself creatively. It came from nurturing my soul.

As the video above describes, health is not related to the body. At least, not only. Your body is really just the expression of your life. And life health is measured by how good your relationships are, how stable you feel, how well can you adapt to change, whether you express yourself creatively or not, whether you got in touch with your inner voice, whether you take action to modify what’s not working, and whether or not you talk to yourself with love.

So really health, love and happiness are so intimately interconnected that the more you start having of one of them, the more you start getting of all of them. For a strange magic it’s enough to start from one little step, and the other will follow. Start by deciding to take care of yourself with love. Start by taking that decision. And then take it again, and again and again. If you forget for a day, a month, a year or even several years, as soon as you realised you didn’t take care of yourself with love take that decision one more time. And with love for yourself, the health and all the things you need to get your life balanced and healthy will follow.