Two years ago I sat in my first graduate school class, eyes open to new possibilities and excited to start on this journey that has led me here. While I strived to start a blog to share the journey and only got two posts in (lol), I have still grown so much from the experience of graduate school. Today, I wanted to share with you a blog post I wrote on January 4, 2017. This post still sits with me and I hope it will help you in some way too.
This woman’s courage to SHARE and be VULNERABLE shows how one person can make a huge difference.
It shows how one person who is unapologetically honest and authentic can create an environment that cultivates deep connection. Imagine if we were always this real. We would nurture, support, and normalize one another’s deepest thoughts.
This week began the start to a new journey- graduate school. I’ve known for awhile that a shy thought of mine was to potentially start a blog. This new adventure provided me with the opportunity to push myself into action. I sat in my first day of class ready to soak up new information about psychology and nervous to have some sort of experience that sparked an idea in me. Small ideas popped into my head, but nothing seemed like it quite fit for that first post. I was looking for that one perfect post to get the ball rolling.
Then the most remarkable, aha moment happened…
We were going around the room sharing our stories on how we got interested in psychology, what we were excited to learn, etc. The prompt was very ‘let your thoughts flow’ and share what you feel like expressing. While everyone’s stories were heartfelt and interesting, one classmate decided to change the scene when she chose to open up in a way that I’ve never seen anyone do in person. She got raw, she embraced her innermost thoughts, and she expressed her deepest insecurities.
“Is something wrong with me? I feel like this isn’t normal. Am I not normal?”
This woman was unbelievable and said all of the thoughts that have been floating around in my head for years. You know – thoughts thoughts that you discourage yourself from sharing out loud? She said what I think a lot of us can relate to. When we did a meditation exercise it caused her to feel anxious because she could feel everyone’s moods in the room- their stress, worries, tiredness. When she talked to people in social settings she was painfully shy and terrified of speaking, even though it seemed like she was moderately outgoing. She held onto negative energy easily and everything affected her deeply. She could feel so much emotion inside of herself that she thought “Is something wrong with me? I feel like this isn’t normal. Am I not normal?” and she admitted this to the entire classroom. She made herself vulnerable and that took guts.
So this goes to you-
The woman that feels so deeply that this causes them to think they are abnormal. You aren’t abnormal, you are special. Yes, sometimes this gift of being highly sensitive to others can seem like a curse, but I promise you it is not. We feel more than others and we feel it harder. Emotional energy hits us like a tidal wave and it tries to knock us off our feet. If we can embrace the idea that this gift is a good thing, then we can work towards fostering self-compassion.
If you are a highly sensitive person and seeking therapy services, I offer a free 15-minute discovery call to see if we are a good fit. Contact me or set up a discovery call here.
Related Reading: Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive in an Overwhelming World