The missing piece

All my life, I’ve watched in awe how people around me seemed to take life so easily, how they took life less seriously, were less easily upset and did every thing with greater ease. My awe turned into frustration when it became apparent that I could not keep up with them. They had flourishing careers, some even combined with kids, and still had energy left to do things in the evenings and weekends. I seemed to get tired just by the mere act of living. From the age of seven I could see that my life unfolded differently than that of most others, but I did not understand why. I felt weird most of the time, different, not one of them.

Last week, I discovered my brain processes information differently than that of most people. It appears I am a rather sensitive type. Strangely enough, for the first time in my life, I don’t feel different anymore. My brain is wired differently, that’s all. And I’m no exception either, it appears almost one fifth of the population has my kind of brain. A brain that processes more information than the average brain, because somehow the information processing filter works differently. Apparently, I see, hear, smell, taste and feel more than most other people. Being highly sensitive to ordinary things like sun light, bright colors, disorganized spaces, crowds, loud, harsh or sudden sounds, the constant noise of traffic, and being hyperaware of my body, my emotions and those of others have made my life intense, regularly overwhelming and stressful, but most of all very tiring and frustrating.

All of a sudden, everything in my life is falling into place. Everything makes complete sense. That is amazing. And liberating. If you’d miss your thumbs you’d grab things differently. Imagine how frustrating life would be if you didn’t. So when your brain is easily overstimulated, you treat it differently than if that were not the case: you allow it more rest. It’s as simple as that.

If you can relate to some of the things I say, you may want to do this test. Elaine Aron is an expert on High Sensitivity and has done extensive research on the subject. She has written several books that may be of help.