As a highly sensitive person, the world can be overwhelming at times. Loud noises, bright lights, and large crowds can all lead to feelings of overstimulation, which can quickly turn into anxiety and stress. However, there are strategies that can help you manage overstimulation and feel more grounded in your day-to-day life. Here are five strategies that can help:
Create a Safe Space: Having a safe space where you can retreat when feeling overstimulated is essential. It can be a room in your home or a quiet outdoor space where you can take a few minutes to yourself. Fill your indoor safe space with things that will soothe your senses such as soft fabrics, serene music, plants, ambient lighting, essential oils, and candles.
Practice Mindfulness: Mindfulness is a practice that involves being present in the moment and paying attention to your thoughts and feelings without judgment. It can help you become more aware of your surroundings, allowing you to notice when you are becoming overstimulated and take steps to reduce your exposure. Mindfulness practices can include meditation, deep breathing, or simply taking a few minutes to focus on your senses and surroundings.
Set Boundaries: Setting boundaries can help you avoid overstimulation. Learn to say no when you need to and limit your exposure to activities and situations that you know will trigger your sensitivity. This can involve setting limits around how much time you spend in certain environments or around certain people. For example, you may need to limit your exposure to loud noises or crowds of people, or you may need to set boundaries around how much time you spend with friends or family members who drain your energy.
Practice Self-Care: Practicing self-care is essential for highly sensitive people. Take time for yourself each day to do something you enjoy, such as reading, listening to music, or taking a relaxing bath. Cleaning and de-cluttering your space, learning something new, practicing your coping skills, eating healthy foods, staying hydrated, and going to counselling are also considered self-care. By taking care of your own needs, you will feel more balanced and less likely to become overstimulated.
Seek Support: Finally, seeking support from a counsellor who specializes in working with highly sensitive people can be beneficial. They can help you develop strategies to manage overstimulation and provide you with tools to build resilience and confidence. Some tools include reframing negative thoughts, practicing gratitude, or practicing self-compassion to help shift your perspective.
By implementing these strategies, highly sensitive people can better manage overstimulation and feel more in control of their experiences. With the guidance and support of a Vancouver counsellor, highly sensitive individuals can learn to build resilience and cope with the challenges that come with their unique sensitivity. Counsellors at Constellations Counselling can help you create your own HSP toolbox filled with skills that will help you bloom in the world as a highly sensitive person.