Workshop Mindfulness for Highly Sensitive Persons
In this workshop we’ll look at how mindfulness can help you to deal with & enjoy your High Sensitivity.
Being a highly sensitive person (HSP) is high maintenance. Having more empathy and care, being more sensitive and thoughtful than an average person comes at a price. The price of good self-care. I offer a mindfulness program specifically adapted to HSP’s, in which you get the tools for good self-care.
Let’s dive shortly into two real life examples.
Imagine a conversation at work with your manager. Just when he is about to give you feedback on your work, his gaze freezes for a couple of seconds. Someone else would not have noticed this, but you did. Your mind starts analysing what this could mean while you become slightly nervous.
Or imagine you’re seeing a friend in a cafe. You hear people talking nearby. In the background you hear music. The door of the cafe keeps opening and closing. You just can’t keep your focus on the conversation with your friend.
Does this sound familiar to you?
Just the story doesn’t end here.
Because you notice much more (and because your stress system is much more sensitive), you get more easily and more often stressed than non-HSPs. High stress causes strong emotions. Being accustomed to not bother others with ‘difficult’ needs, many HSPs bottle up these emotions. This causes a lot of frustration, which causes even more stress.
The frequent/prolonged stress can lead to sleep problems, tiredness, anxiety, depression and health problems.
Probably you’ve learned strategies to deal with your sensitivity and stress. In psychological terms these strategies are called coping mechanisms. Some of these strategies sometimes become a problem themselves, like for example:
– isolating oneself
– not feeling own needs
– not stating boundaries/saying no
This may sound quite dramatic. But important to realise is that High Sensitivity is not a dysfunction. As Van Hoof (a Belgian researcher specialised in High Sensitivity) puts it; the difference between High Sensitivity as a talent and High Sensitivity as an impairment is the level of self-regulation.
So the good news is that you can regard High Sensitivity as a talent. Just there is work to do. You need to strengthen your self-regulation skills. Mindfulness can help you with that.
Using mindfulness, you can:
- learn what makes you stressed and what you need in these circumstances
- connect to yourself and the present moment (“grounding”)
- tune in to your body more so you detect stress sooner
- recognise which strategies you use to deal with stress are less helpful & learn new strategies
- tune in to your feelings more so you can give yourself the emotional and also practical care you need
- recognise when you are over-aroused/overwhelmed and give yourself what you need right then
- give yourself kindness and understanding (= self-compassion)
- use your sensitivity to thoroughly enjoy moments
What you will learn in this workshop
- About the core components of High Sensitivity
- Ways of dealing with High Sensitivity challenges
- Insights in your High Sensitivity talents
- Practical exercises which you can start using at home
- price: 30 euro (25 euro early bird if you sign up before April 29th)
People who have participated in earlier workshops of Amsterdam Mindfulness receive 5 euro reduction. If you decide to join the 8-session course Mindfulness for High Sensitivity after this workshop, then you will receive 15 euro reduction on the 8-session course.
- duration: 2 hours
- date: May 4th
- time: 16.00-18.00
- language: English
- location: Granaatstraat 38, Amsterdam
Some reactions of participants of earlier editions
“I always thought I was the only one facing these problems.”
“It feels so good to be in a group with other Highly Sensitive Persons. For the first time in my life I feel completely understood.”
“Now I realise how much I’m judging myself.”
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the difference between this program and a regular mindfulness course?
1.Training to be more mindful is a different process for HSP’s vs non-HSP’s. Whereas non-HSP’s generally start with trying to become more open to experiences, HSP’s have a natural talent for that. It’s rather the opposite, many HSP’s have a strategy to sometimes shut down/close off because there’s so much coming in. For them the challenge is rather how to handle this openness which is there already (at least under the right conditions). So we will focus on what is relevant for HSP’s.
2.High Sensitivity is not a collection of challenging features of which we want to get rid. It’s a personality type with which we want to become at ease with. To take an example: HSP’s easily experience a higher arousal (often experienced as stress). If taken as an undesirable feature, a trainer/coach/therapist might advise that it’s something we should work on to get rid of or to improve in. This will be an impossible goal for an HSP, as it’s part of being an HSP. It’s connected with the high sensitivity and the deep processing. In my course, the HS personality is taken as a a) system and as b) a given.
More differences you find here: http://amsterdam-mindfulness.nl/difference-standard-mindfulness-and-mindfulness-for-hsp/
Do I have to be a Highly Sensitive Person if I want to take part in this course?
> No. There are many reasons why you may feel highly sensitive. And for some these reasons might be temporary (like when experiencing a burn-out), for others it’s part of who they are.
How can I test if I am a Highly Sensitive Person according to the official definition?
> You can take a self-test here: http://hsperson.com/test/highly-sensitive-test/
Is ‘High Sensitivity’ an official diagnosis?
> HSP as it was defined by Elaine Aron is not in the DSM-V (the American diagnostic manual for psychiatric challenges). This keeps open the possibility that it in some form will appear in future editions. If you like to know more about this, feel free to contact me.