Why Am I So Sensitive? The Surprising Truth Behind Your Emotions

Are you getting emotional over little things or feeling overwhelmed by sensory input? Have you asked yourself, “Why am I so sensitive?” You may be a highly sensitive person. Being highly sensitive isn’t a disorder but a personality trait affecting around 20% of the population. If you’re highly sensitive, you may feel things more deeply than others and be more attuned to your surroundings.

Understanding Sensitivity is crucial in coping with it. Many factors can contribute to high sensitivity, including genetics, past trauma, and mental health disorders. Some people are born with a more sensitive nervous system, while others may develop sensitivity later in life. Whatever the cause, you must recognize and understand your sensitivity to manage it effectively.

Why Am I So Sensitive

Understanding Why Am I So Sensitive

Being a highly sensitive person can be both a blessing and a curse. You may feel deeply moved by art, music, and nature but quickly overwhelmed by noise, crowds, and intense emotions. So why are you so sensitive?

One possible explanation is that you have a heightened sensitivity to stimuli due to your genetics and nervous system. Another factor that may contribute to your sensitivity is your past experiences. If you grew up in a chaotic or stressful environment, you may have developed a heightened sensitivity to cope with the constant stimulation and unpredictability. Alternatively, if you grew up in a sheltered or restrictive environment, you may have developed a sensitivity to new experiences and a fear of the unknown.

Regardless of the cause, it’s essential to understand and embrace your sensitivity. Here are some benefits of being a highly sensitive person:

  • Empathy: HSPs tend to have strong empathy for others, which can lead to deeper connections and understanding.
  • Self-awareness: HSPs are highly self-aware, allowing them to identify their needs and emotions quickly.
  • Appreciation: HSPs can often appreciate the world’s beauty and complexity in ways others may not.

Of course, being sensitive also has its challenges. You may struggle with overstimulation, anxiety, and stress. However, you can lead a fulfilling and meaningful life by understanding your sensitivity and learning how to manage it.

Why Am I So Sensitive: The Science Behind Sensitivity

If you feel things more deeply than others, you may have wondered why you’re so sensitive. The truth is, there’s no one answer to that question. Sensitivity can be influenced by various factors, including genetics, environment, and even how your nervous system is wired.

The Role of the Nervous System

One factor contributing to sensitivity is how your nervous system is wired. Specifically, some people may have a more reactive nervous system, making them more sensitive to environmental stimuli. This can include loud noises, bright lights, or even certain textures.

Research has shown that highly sensitive people tend to have a more active amygdala, the part of the brain that processes emotions. This means that they may be more likely to pick up on subtle emotional cues from others and may be more affected by emotional situations.

Genetic Factors

Another factor that can contribute to sensitivity is genetics. Studies have shown that sensitivity tends to run in families, which suggests that there may be a genetic component to this trait.

One gene that has been linked to sensitivity is the serotonin transporter gene. This gene is involved in regulating the amount of serotonin in the brain, which is a neurotransmitter that helps to regulate mood and emotion. People with a particular variant of this gene may be more likely to be highly sensitive.

It’s important to note that genetics is just one factor that can contribute to sensitivity. Environmental factors, such as childhood experiences and life events, can also shape your sensitivity.

Emotional Sensitivity

You may be emotionally sensitive if you often feel overwhelmed by your emotions. Emotional sensitivity is a common trait that affects many people, and various factors can cause it.

Impact of Past Trauma

One of the most common causes of emotional sensitivity is past trauma. You may be more sensitive to emotional triggers if you have experienced a traumatic event, such as abuse, neglect, or a severe accident. Trauma can change how your brain processes emotions, making you more reactive to certain stimuli.

If you have experienced trauma, seeking support from a mental health professional is essential. Therapy can help you process your emotions and develop coping strategies to manage your emotional sensitivity.

Role of Personality Traits

Another factor that can contribute to emotional sensitivity is personality traits. Some people are more sensitive than others, which can be due to various factors. For example, highly sensitive people tend to have more active mirror neurons responsible for empathy and emotional regulation.

Additionally, some personality disorders, such as borderline personality disorder, are characterized by emotional sensitivity. If you suspect you may have a personality disorder, seeking a professional diagnosis and treatment is essential.

Physical Sensitivity

If you are wondering why you are so sensitive, it’s essential to understand that physical sensitivity can be a contributing factor. Physical sensitivity is when you experience heightened sensitivity to external stimuli like lights, sounds, and colors, as well as internal stimuli like hunger and pain. Here are some sub-sections that can help you understand physical sensitivity better.

Sensitivity to Environment

You may quickly be overwhelmed by your surroundings if you are highly sensitive. You may be more sensitive to bright lights, loud noises, and strong smells. This can make it difficult for you to concentrate or relax in specific environments. You may also feel more comfortable in quieter, calmer settings.

To manage your sensitivity to the environment, you can try the following:

  • Use earplugs or noise-canceling headphones to block out loud noises.
  • Wear sunglasses or a hat to reduce the impact of bright lights.
  • Avoid solid smells or use essential oils to create a calming environment.

Food and Allergies

Your physical sensitivity may also be related to food and allergies. Some people are more sensitive to certain foods and may experience symptoms like bloating, gas, or stomach pain after eating them. Others may have allergies that cause them to experience hives, itching, or difficulty breathing.

To manage your sensitivity to food and allergies, you can try the following:

  • Keep a food diary to track your symptoms and identify trigger foods.
  • Avoid foods that you know cause you discomfort or allergic reactions.
  • Talk to your doctor about allergy testing and treatment options.

Understanding your physical sensitivity can help you manage your symptoms and improve your overall well-being. You can reduce your sensitivity and feel more comfortable daily by making simple changes to your environment and diet.

Why Am I So Sensitive: Coping with High Sensitivity

If you identify as highly sensitive, it is important to have coping strategies to help you manage the challenges of this trait. Some self-care plans and professional help options may be helpful for you.

Self-Care Strategies

  1. Set Boundaries: As a highly sensitive person, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the demands of others. It is essential to set boundaries and prioritize self-care to avoid burnout. This may include saying no to social events or taking daily breaks to recharge.
  2. Practice Mindfulness: Mindfulness practices, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, can help you manage overwhelming emotions and stay grounded in the present moment. Incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine can help you feel more centered and calm.
  3. Engage in Relaxing Activities: Engaging in activities that bring you joy and relaxation can help counteract the stress of daily life. This may include bathing, walking in nature, or listening to calming music.
  4. Journaling: Journaling can be a helpful tool for processing emotions and identifying patterns in your thoughts and behaviors. Writing down your thoughts and feelings can help you gain clarity and insight into your inner world.

Professional Help

  1. Therapy: Therapy can be a helpful tool for highly sensitive individuals to explore their emotions and develop coping strategies. A therapist can provide a safe and supportive space to process difficult experiences and develop healthy ways of managing emotions.
  2. Medication: In some cases, medication may help manage symptoms of anxiety or depression that can often accompany high sensitivity. It is essential to consult with a healthcare professional to determine if medication is a good option for you.

Remember, being highly sensitive is not a weakness. With the right tools and support, you can learn to embrace this trait and thrive daily.

Key Takeaways

  • High sensitivity is a personality trait that affects around 20% of the population.
  • Sensitivity can be caused by genetics, past trauma, or mental health disorders.
  • Understanding and managing your sensitivity is critical to living a happy, healthy life.


Being highly sensitive can be challenging but not a flaw or weakness. It is a personality trait that can be both a gift and a curse. Understanding and embracing your sensitivity can help you lead a happier and more fulfilling life if you are highly sensitive.

To manage your sensitivity, it is important to identify your triggers and take steps to avoid or minimize them. This can include setting boundaries, practicing self-care, and seeking support from loved ones or a therapist.

Remember that being sensitive is not a weakness, and taking time to recharge and care for yourself is okay. You can lead a more balanced and fulfilling life by embracing your sensitivity and learning to manage it.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some famous, highly sensitive people?

Many famous people have been identified as highly sensitive. Some examples include actors Emma Watson and Heath Ledger, musician Alanis Morissette, and author J.K. Rowling. Highly sensitive people are often drawn to creative fields where they can use their sensitivity to their advantage.

How can I stop being so sensitive and emotional?

It’s important to remember that being highly sensitive is not a flaw or weakness. However, if you find that your sensitivity is causing you distress, there are some things you can do to manage it. Mindfulness practices such as meditation and deep breathing can help you stay centered and calm in the face of overwhelming emotions. It’s also important to set boundaries and prioritize self-care, such as getting enough sleep and exercise.

What causes a person to be highly sensitive?

There is no one specific cause of high sensitivity. Some people may be born with a more sensitive nervous system, while others may develop heightened sensitivity due to past trauma or environmental factors. Additionally, neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism and ADHD have been linked to increased sensitivity.

Is being highly sensitive a sign of BPD?

While high sensitivity can be a symptom of borderline personality disorder (BPD), it does not necessarily indicate the disorder on its own. Other symptoms of BPD include intense emotions, unstable relationships, and impulsive behavior.

Can ADHD make a person highly sensitive?

Yes, ADHD has been linked to increased sensitivity. People with ADHD may be more easily overwhelmed by sensory input such as loud noises or bright lights. Additionally, ADHD can make it harder to regulate emotions, leading to heightened sensitivity.

Why do I feel so sensitive in my relationships?

Relationships can be emotionally charged, and feeling sensitive in these situations is normal. However, if your sensitivity is causing problems in your relationships, working on communication skills and boundary-setting may be helpful. It’s also important to remember that your sensitivity is a valuable trait that can help you connect with others on a deeper level.

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