Wednesday, November 23, 2011

HSPs and Gratitude

Thanksgiving in the USA.

Another holiday is upon us. For some, the holiday is a celebration of family closeness. For others, it might be a day to reflect on-- and count-- their blessings. For yet others, it might feel like an offensive monument to overconsumption.

For HSPs, holidays-- of pretty much any kind-- seem to be a mixed blessing. Over the years, I have met a great many who loathe holidays for a variety of reasons: Commercialization the drowns out the underlying message of a holiday; the way many find themselves in situations of "forced family cheer;" or simply the fact that many holidays tend to be about "groups and crowds" which generally lead to a sense of feeling overwhelmed.

On average, I'd have to say that I hear more complaints (from HSPs) about holidays, than I hear joy and reasons to celebrate.

As a group of people, we tend to be very good at looking at a situation (a holiday, for example) and noticing-- and then pointing to-- everything that's "wrong" with it. Of course, there's nothing fundamentally wrong with that-- "noticing details," combined with a sense of natural caution is a core part of the HSP trait. However, sometimes this focus on what's wrong and what we don't like about something can push us over the edge into territory where we, perhaps, start to come across as whiners and complainers.

Misery loves company?

Sure, there may be a lot of things wrong with the world, and there may be a lot of things we don't like, or don't have... but there are also lots of things (even if they may seem insignificant, on a greater Cosmic scale) we can be grateful for. And perhaps the spirit of the holiday we celebrate tomorrow can be remembered if we stop the lamentations for a moment and consider the things we feel grateful for; thankful for.

Just because something might seem small or "insignificant" (say, "warm slippers") compared to worry about world hunger doesn't mean these small things should pass unnoticed and unappreciated.

We recently moved. Moving is a very stressful pain-in-the-ass, but I can still find a moment to be grateful that the move was only five miles (easier packing, easier to move bit-by-bit), and not 2000.

Whereas I may struggle with friendships and connecting-- as many HSPs do-- I can still pause to be thankful for the connections and sense of understanding I have found with fellow sensitives in the world of cyberspace.

And something we often take for granted: I have a roof over my head and a warm bed. Even if you are couch surfing with friends or relatives, that's still better than living in a box, under a freeway overpass.

I think I'll leave it there, and wish everyone here in the US (and beyond, for that matter) a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Talk back! What are YOU grateful or thankful for, at this time? Even if you are going through difficult times, pause for a few minutes... I am sure you can find something. Then leave a comment and share! Why? Because "putting it out there" makes it real, in a way you don't experience if you just "think it." And it makes others feel like they are not alone. Thanks for reading!


  1. I am grateful that I found your site on blogger as well as having you return to the blogging world. I also appreciate your candid and insightful blogs.

  2. "Whereas I may struggle with friendships and connecting-- as many HSPs do-"

    Why do HSPs struggle with friendships and connecting?

  3. @VP: Most HSPs look for more "depth" in their friendships than most people are willing to give, leading to a mismatch of expectations. At the same time, there is also a conflict between wanting to be close to others, while also tending to feel easily overwhelmed by that same closeness.

    That's a very short answer. If you'd like to read more, here's an article I wrote about this topic:

  4. As an HSP,I have been called both a "whiner" and "complainer". It does help my attitude to think of what I am thankful for, rather than always focusing on what doesn't feel right.


What's YOUR opinion and experience? Please leave a comment (Please note that comments are moderated to keep spam out).

Support My Patreon!

If you enjoyed your visit to HSP Notes and found something of value here, please consider supporting my Art and Creativity Patreon account. Although it was created primarily to generate support for my ART, there is a special $2 support level for HSP Notes readers! Look for the link in the right hand column... and thank you!