Sunday, March 10, 2019

Day 8 of 30 Days of Self Love: Honour Your Sensitive Self

Enjoying Nature on Lac des Chevreuils in 2016

Sensitive: "Easily upset, delicate"
Insensitive: "Harmful, unfeeling"

Sensitive: "Showing understanding and awareness of other people's needs, problems or feelings."
Insensitive: "Indifferent to other people's needs, problems or feelings."

"You're too sensitive."

How many times have you summoned up the courage to confront someone about how their words or behaviour hurts your feelings and you are accused of being "too sensitive" or "overly sensitive"?

Have you expressed your hurt feelings to someone who replies simply "I was only joking", "I'm only teasing" or "I didn't mean it"?

Do you feel negative energy from someone nearby who is in a bad mood? 

Does beauty in nature, or art, or humanity bring tears to your eyes at times? Does tragedy give you the same reaction?

Here are my own definitions:

Sensitive: "Highly aware of the energy around me. Easily hurt by words and actions of people who claim to love me and refuse to stop hurting me even after I've told them that they are causing me pain. In tune with Nature, wildlife, my pets and my intuition. Living by love, never harming others, enjoying solitude, being creative, having empathy for others..." My list goes on!

Insensitive: "A bully."

What happens to a sensitive soul when they interact with an insensitive bully? Well, abuse is likely, misery, walking on eggshells, low self-esteem, a loss of self and lots of sapped energy. Unless you're able to recognize that this bully is toxic and walk away from them, then the likelihood is that you will be forgiving, make excuses for their behaviour and worst case "take your lumps" to keep the peace. In this case you are gradually and continually worn down by their negativity to the point where sometimes you feel trapped with them and the idea of getting away from them is far too overwhelming.

I've read hundreds and hundreds of stories of folks who are in this situation. When you are entangled in family and loving relationships, it makes things very difficult, makes it harder to walk away.

And...I am speaking from experience.

Not only is it frustrating to hear "you're just being too sensitive", it's painful. Being dismissed for having hurt feelings just makes you feel worse. The "bully" invalidates and dismisses the idea that something they said or did could have possibly caused harm, they don't take responsibility - so not only are you left feeling invalidated, you are left feeling confused, as though..."maybe I was too sensitive, maybe I overreact, maybe my feelings aren't valid"...then what? Shame. You start to feel shame that you have a hurt feeling. This is very confusing and it's happened to me.  God help you if you stand up to this type of bully, you are then labeled "crazy" or "hysterical". Again, talking from experience here.

The bully may think he/she is winning, but you don't have to let them win. That's why you need to honour your sensitivity.

Having hurt feelings isn't WRONG. It's what you're feeling. Your emotions are never WRONG and nobody should try to convince you of that in order to justify their bad behaviour.

If I tell you that something you said or did is hurting my feelings or making me feel uncomfortable, why justify every reason in the book to continue doing this - KNOWING that you are causing pain?

"You're just too sensitive. You need a thicker skin. Can't you even laugh at yourself?"

I REFUSE to "toughen up" in order to accept any kind of insensitivity from a bully. That's NOT putting ME first is it? Of course I can laugh at myself when it's all in good fun; but NOT when I'm being picked apart and made fun of!

Honouring your sensitive self is very important. If you are a sensitive person, I commend you! There is nothing wrong with it; in fact, there is everything right about it.

Part of my goal in 2019 is to rid myself of toxic people from my life FOR GOOD. This is tough for a sensitive gal like me because I'm naturally forgiving. I try to give the toxic person the benefit of the doubt, I try to put myself in their shoes by making excuses "oh, he's just in a bad mood today, that happens to everyone..." or "she just doesn't know how to express her feelings properly, I know she didn't mean it..."

This is NOT a good side of being sensitive. Don't get me wrong, being forgiving and empathetic IS good; but not if it causes pain in your own life and doubt in your own mind.

The next time a "bully" says to you "you're being too sensitive."; respond with "why is that a bad thing?" or if you're feeling especially frisky, say "well, I think you're being too INsensitive!" - though use that one with caution because lots of bullies can't handle when you stand up to them.

Jack and Me - I love him SO much!

I made a list of the traits I feel I have, that make me proud to honour my sensitive side. I no longer allow bullies to make me feel bad about myself with their insensitive remarks or excuses. I can validate myself when I need to because I KNOW that being sensitive is a positive aspect of who I am as a woman and as a person. 

I made this list to remind myself of that every day:

1. I am naturally compassionate and caring. I have sympathy. I am supportive and loving. I want the best for everyone I care about.

2. I can really pick up on the subtleties of another person's mood. This either creates empathy in me so that I can care for someone I love; or it helps me to distance myself from someone who can cause me harm.

3. I see the best in others, I give others the benefit of the doubt and I'm very forgiving.

4. I see beauty all around me, I feel a deep gratitude for that beauty.

5. I am creative and always try to see the glass half full. I am a very positive person.

6. I really do experience love and joy very intensely. I am very loyal and generous.

7. I am always trying to improve myself in gentle ways. I like to solve conflicts in a loving way. I do not hold grudges, I don't feed problems, I find solutions.

8. I am nurturing and caring.

What's on your list?

(Long post today, I had to limit myself, this is a very important subject for me!) 😊


Lisa said...

Great post today! From one sensitive gal to another, I really enjoy your writing. I wish I had the gift of expression that way :) Lisa

Martha said...

Wonderful post, Rain! And great food for thought for everyone. Perception is reality for each individual. You can't deny anyone their feelings. We all see and feel things in our own way. I'm an empath and I totally understand where you're coming from. It took years to get to where I am. I have removed toxic people from my life and do not allow any news ones in! And I've learned to put up a shield to protect myself from negative energy and toxic individuals. I want to be peaceful and happy, and life is too short to live any other way. It's not easy but it's necessary. Be proud of you. Embrace all that you are. Celebrate the beautiful soul that is within you. Those who matter will appreciate it.

wisps of words said...

You have come so far!!!!

Let this fact, add to your self esteem!!!!!!!!!!!

Lots of gentle hugs....

Rain said...

Thanks so much Lisa! :) Cheers to your sensitivity!!! xx

Rain said...

Thanks Martha :) xx You and I both are empaths, it can be very challenging at times. And yes, perception is reality and we need to respect that in others. Some people are just incapable of it and I label them toxic, at least to me. :) Congratulations on how far you've come too, I know your history and my gosh, you're are an inspiration to me. You overcame so much with your ex-husband and look at you now. You're so right that it's not easy to rid yourself of toxic people sometimes, but we have to do it. We only live once!

Rain said...

Thanks Wisps of Words :) xx

wyomingheart said...

Yep, I always make the lemonade with those pesky lemons! The bright side is for sure the better side! Still catching up Rain! I'm a couple of days behind!

Rain said...

I love that saying Dino, making lemonade out of lemons! That's great! :)

Magic Love Crow said...

I love the pictures of you Rain!
Always be you! Big Hugs!

Rain said...

Thank you so much Stacy! :) xx