The image is from the book The Sensitive Self by Michael Eigen – who says in his article Sensitivity, “Without sensitivity what would life be like? Sensitivity nurtures us, gives life color, expressiveness, charm… Sensitivity, feeling and thinking feed each other, are part of each other. Thinking and feeling are ways sensitivity unfolds or grows.”
In her article Growing Up Gifted Is Not Easy, Elaine Aron, PhD recalls searching for the term “sensitivity” in the social science literature, and finding that Linda Silverman [Director of the Gifted Development Center] “is convinced that all gifted children are highly sensitive.”
In our interview, psychiatrist Judith Orloff, MD commented that one form of sensitivity, psychic ability, “goes hand in hand with all exceptional ability.”
But she talks in another interview about the dark side of high energy sensitivity: “An intuitive empath is someone who not only senses energy but also absorbs it from others and the environment. Their body takes on the angst of the world. Only as an adult did I realize that I’m an empath and I was absorbing the energy of crowds. Being compressed in crowds can zap your energy.” [From article : Dr. Judith Orloff and Positive Energy, by Susan Meeker Lowrey.]
Dr. Orloff is author of the book Positive Energy.
Her column [in O, The Oprah Magazine] is about The Sponge People, which Martha Beck calls people who who pick up on the high levels of emotional energy that some people put out. “I’ve seen so many people struggling with the effects of this mysterious phenomenon that I now take it for granted,” said Dr. Beck.
“Not everyone is spongy, but those who are can learn to protect themselves from inadvertently taking in other people’s stress.” She lists in the article a number of strategies to “armor up.”
More help may be found on Books, Products and Programs for Highly Sensitive People.
Originally posted 2006-05-20 16:58:30.