Have you ever been told to let go of something or that you are too sensitive, and you take notice of things that happen around you? Chances are you are a highly sensitive person (HSP). It is estimated that around 15 to 20% of the total population is highly sensitive. While it is not a diagnosis of a disease, it is a behavioral attribute that may lead to self-harm.
However we at Surf Therapy Travel, rather see you thrive in life as a highly sensitive person than harming yourself. That's why we like to share information on how you can reduce your high-sensitiveness using surf therapy.
Who are highly sensitive people (HSP)?
Research conducted over the years suggests that being highly sensitive is a personality trait that is widespread across the world. Being highly sensitive is a characteristic of humans that permits our nervous system to undertake a detailed analysis of minor changes.
Most of these are changes that many people ignore or don't ponder over. It is a natural trait and not a disease. Just a variation of temperament. However, it is perceived differently by people because they don't have any idea about it.
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Signs of highly sensitive people
Highly sensitive people get stressed out by little things. They are vulnerable and often feel overwhelmed by small issues.
While symptoms may vary from person to person, these are signs usually observed in sensitive people:
- They notice small changes in other people such as that fake smile of their friend, or a minute change in the behavior of the class teacher.
- Get overwhelmed by any emotional change in the environment, such as crying over a heart-warming, sentimental scene in a movie.
- Worry about their conduct while being continually watched over. Highly sensitive people tend to perform poorly in such situations.
- Highly sensitive people tend to get stressed out, or even immobilized when experiencing chaos, danger, or clutter.
- They may start crying over being scolded by a teacher or even if someone tells a mean joke about them.
- Sometimes they get frustrated and often overwhelmed, trying to achieve perfection.
- When seeing a thing of beauty such as the rising sun, or a beautiful flower, highly sensitive people are strongly moved by it.
- They can read people's minds, i.e., can clearly judge when someone is lying to them. Their brain has well developed cognitive functions.
- Highly sensitive people daydream and keep thinking about the rich inner world inside them.
- Loud noises and sounds trigger them, and they feel awfully irritated by it.
- People with high sensitivity are usually hesitant, shy, and quiet.
- These people are very innovative and creative.
High sensitivity is not an illness. It's just similar to living with heightened senses. Although they face some challenges, highly sensitive people are very creative, conscious, have the power of reading people's emotions, prove to be more empathic, problem-solving, and loving.
Highly sensitive people tend to be good at observing small changes. They can notice something as insignificant as a change in room furniture or the stressed environment in the office. They can help prevent and avoid possible complications before things get out of hand. They live with fluctuating emotions where joy is pure ecstasy and sorrow is deep.
Challenges faced by HSPs
Highly sensitive persons have some great qualities, but they also have a few hiccups they struggle with. They experience life a little differently than ordinary people. Highly sensitive people look at life through a more in-depth perspective, observe things significantly, and they are very compassionate.
Here are some challenges faced by highly sensitive people.
Although 30% of HSPs are extroverts, the rest, 70%, are introverts. They have an inner-thinking process going on. When these thoughts continue over time, they become negative and worrisome and begin to shift their mood, and their emotions are affected.
Thus, they feel overwhelmed, exhausted, and anxious. One other reason is their empathy, which forces them to take responsibility for others that they find harder to manage later.
HSPs experience emotions with higher intensity. Bright colors, loud music, or itchy clothes, all affect them and have an impact on their feelings. They become uncomfortable at parties because there is too much going on, such as lights, colors, a lot of people, or loud music, etc.
When having a problem, everyone looks onto highly sensitive people for a solution, for consoling. Still, when they are in difficulty, they feel unnoticed, unseen. They seek reassurances as they are hypersensitive and quick to notice any behavioral change or signs of rejection.
People with highly sensitive personalities suffer from low self-esteem. You can't be happy and self-loving when you are told to toughen up, to gear up, be more like others, throughout all your childhood. Humans are born with two social modes; ranking and linking. When focusing on ranking, factors such as power, influence, and status matter. However, when focusing on loving, then love, compassion, and empathy matter. Sadly, the world we live in focuses more on power and influence than affection and emotions.
Although they are as diligent and capable as any other, they feel emotions more than others. Too much social and sensory stimulation at the workplace can make them tense and withdrawn and ultimately overwhelmed, making it difficult to manage work. Even after that, understanding managers rate highly sensitive persons as their best performers. But sometimes, they have difficulty in finding a job that fits well. And for being different from others, they can be ignored for promotion and other perks.
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Surfing is a great sport in which a surfer rides the waves, which carry them to the shore. You face challenges, have an adrenaline rush, and a feeling of ecstasy. Surf therapy is derived from surfing. It involves the treatment of people suffering from stress, depression, traumatic brain injury, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Ocean therapy, or surf therapy, as it is famously known, involves treatment via the sea, improving mental health, increasing self-confidence, and enhancing the ability to face challenges and stand in front of them.
Benefits of Surf Therapy for highly sensitive people
Everyone faces some challenges in their life, but that doesn't mean one should stop living. Life is a book full of chapters of trouble and problems that cannot be skipped. That's not how life works. You have to go through every section, whether you like it or not. Keep going.
That's how success stories are made. But sometimes, you don't need to bear it all alone. Take help from professionals. And for people feeling overwhelmed and frustrated all the time, surf therapy is likely to make their life easier.
Overcome stress and anxiety
Stress and anxiety are something every individual suffers from at some point in his life. But highly sensitive persons are more prone to anxiety and depression since they are hypersensitive, making it harder for them to confront the emotional arousal. The ocean, for many, is a healing space, like a sanctuary.
The serenity, and the calmness of the sea, help soothe your mind and the brain. You forget about all the problems of the world and live in the moment. Each surf therapy program takes a planned approach to healing. It helps you to get out of your head and into the vast ocean. Surf therapy focuses very much on the mental well being of a person. It has been proved to be successful by researchers.
Source of entertainment
Surf therapy is a treatment on the one hand; plus, it is a source of amusement, a distraction from sorrows and everyday challenges. It is an enjoyable sport that is fun and challenging at the same time, yet it proves beneficial for mental health. Research suggests that exercise can help overcome depression.
In this modern age, people have become so busy in their life. Smartphones and electronic devices keep you connected to the world always. As a highly sensitive person, when you go surfing, you unplug yourself from the world and dive into the ocean, which is beautiful, free, wild, and mysterious. Whatever is going on in the world, whatever is happening anywhere but in the sea, doesn't matter to you. What matters is you, the sea, and the peace you are looking for.
Surfing induces an adrenaline release in your body. It is a sport that requires mental and physical sharpness. It improves your alertness and helps you cope with your stress. Surfing therapy very much relates to achieving therapeutic benefits involving the mind and the body. When you are happy, dopamine, a hormone, is released inside your body and gives you a feeling of happiness that alleviates your distress.
Communication with others
As a highly sensitive person, you may be often being labeled as being shy or quiet. You can relate to the feeling of being left out. When you go to surf therapy, you can talk with people who know what it feels like to be highly sensitive. You can speak to your consultant. They will listen to you without being judgmental.
Getting a sense of accomplishment
Surfing requires physical strength. It is not easy. It is not simple. Experts suggest the reason for its success is because it's challenging. It requires your input, your efforts, and demands from you to get into the zone.
Riding the waves in the ocean is a challenge. It leaves you with a sense of accomplishment and boosts your morale. You connect it with the life challenges that you face. It makes you feel that you can, and you will go further as you discover your potential that you already had in you.
Overcoming the trauma
Sometimes trauma is the trigger cause of high sensitivity. Trauma may refer to any disturbing experience you have had in your life. It could be an injury, damage, hurt, death, or anything that happened to you or any person around you, which left an impact.
Even a small trauma affects a highly sensitive person to a greater extent since you have a high functioning brain area that relates to emotions and cognitive processes. Our surf therapy consultants help you get over the trauma by addressing it by listening to your story that you have wanted to tell for a long time.
While in the ocean, you feel connected. Connected to mother nature, you feel a sense of freedom, a sense of joy. You build a relationship of trust with people around you. The ambiance and the sound of waves as they return to the shore; it is an experience that gives you immense joy.
The calmness of the waves, and the absence of worldly noise. It puts you in the moment, and just after 30 minutes of surfing, people report significant improvement in mood and feel relief from stress. Surf therapy is athletic yet therapeutic at the same time.
Alternative to traditional therapy
One of the key benefits of taking surf therapy is the fun and recreational part. While traditional ways of therapy work, not everyone is responsive to them. Surf therapy is an excellent method of treating people. The technique is used for therapeutic purposes without the person noticing it, unlike those monotonous and tiring sessions every now and then.
Above all, it is free from any medications and their possible side effects on your brain and other systems of the body. Surf therapy is a holistic approach and promotes the psychological, mental, and spiritual well-being of highly sensitive, traumatized, and stressed persons.
When you attend one of our retreats, you understand your self-worth and how important you are to yourself and to the world. You start to feel better. You feel more relaxed. You begin to enjoy life better. You learn how to maintain your calmness, stay happy, and be productive. You can focus on your goals without being distracted with every little unwanted change.
There are millions of people who feel the same as you do, who go through similar situations as you do. You are not alone. So, if you are struggling with high sensitivity, your suffering ends here.
Join hands with Surf Therapy Travel and achieve the sense of completion, joy, and peacefulness with our Surf Therapy Retreats and learn more about the improvement of the well-being of highly sensitivity through surf therapy.