Saturday, December 29, 2012
HSP Issue: NOT everyone is "Supposed To Like You!"
It's probably part of human nature to want to be well-liked. But sometimes we go overboard in our efforts to be "liked" end end up hurting ourselves in the process. WE do the hurting-- through how we process and treat ourselves-- not the other person.
Author Rita Mae Brown once wrote:
"I think the reward for conformity is that everyone likes you except yourself."
"Conformity" is actually a pretty wide concept. It doesn't just imply conforming to societal and cultural norms, it also can mean conforming to other people's impressions of what we "should" be, like, think, do and so forth. Since HSPs are very good at intuiting what others want and feel, we'll often twist ourselves into a pretzel shape in order to present the "version" of ourselves that would be most appealing to the person we're interacting with. But what happens to us, in our process? Often, we've "lost" ourselves... and what's worse, when our true self "returns" to the connection (once we get comfortable in the relationship) the person we're befriending or connecting with will no longer be dealing with the person they thought they were getting to know... and that's often how friendships (and relationships) fall apart.
As HSPs, what we sometimes lose sight of-- especially when it comes to "feeling liked"-- is the basic fact that not everyone is supposed to like us. And the fact is, not everyone is going to.
So where does the reality check come in?
We must stop and consider whether we have become deeply invested in "impressing"-- and adapting ourselves to "fit"-- people who don't even matter very much to us... in service of our inner need and desire to feel "liked." And we ultimately have to consider why we are bending over backwards to elicit a positive response from some random person who could care less whether we're alive or dead... let alone happy.
Eventually I asked her why she was trying to make friends with people she relatively little in common with, and who didn't share her worldview, at all. She shrugged and said "but that's what most people around here are LIKE, and other people seem to have no trouble making friends like that."
Whereas I could "see her point," the bottom line is that HSPs are not "like everyone else." And because of that very fact, it's folly to think that "everyone else" is going to universally think that we're "all that, and a bag of chips." Some years back, I wrote an article about HSPs and the difficulties they face with friendships, and addressed this very point-- among many others.
Because the highly sensitive get easily overstimulated, we have only a limited amount of bandwidth to give to "other people." We owe it to ourselves to be discerning in our choices of whom we share that energy with. We also owe it to ourselves to accept (and even embrace) that NOT everyone is going to like us... and that this is OK, and not something to obsess over. It's not an easy process, and it asks us to let go of some old less-than-healthy beliefs about ourselves, and what we "should" do. But in the end... odd are your life will be less stressful and less painful... and your relationships and friendships more rewarding.
Talk Back! Do you worry about people liking you? Do you believe that everyone should like you? As an HSP, do you work hard to "make" people like you? Do you find friendships and other relationships frustrating? Have you ever considered that it may be the people you choose that are the problem, not who you are, as a friend? Share your experience-- leave a comment!
Sharing is Love! Use the buttons below to share this article with others, and be part of spreading general awareness of the HSP trait. Thank you!
▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼
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!