Are you looking for great books for highly sensitive people? In this article, guest writer Camille Parker shares 4 powerful must-reads for the highly sensitive person.
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Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
Highly sensitive persons (HSPs) are often misunderstood, with people thinking that they’re just “too sensitive” when there are actually biological and psychological factors that affect these individuals.
According to Psychology Today, HSPs make up about 15 to 20% of the population. These persons are those who have nervous systems with increased sensitivity to physical, emotional, and social stimuli. This often leads to them experiencing sensory overreaction and overload.
While challenging, being an HSP also has its strengths. There are various resources that can help you learn more about your advantages and obstacles; books, in particular, can provide a wealth of knowledge and insight into these experiences. Here are four that may just strike a chord with you:
The Empath’s Guide to Survival: Life Strategies for Sensitive People
Judith Orloff draws from her own experiences in her book The Empath’s Guide to Survival. She also discusses the different types and characteristics of empaths.
Physical empaths can draw in other people’s physical states and symptoms while emotional empaths pick up on others’ feelings. The third type of empath is called the intuitive empath. These individuals have the unique ability to experience life with heightened perceptions, such as psychic abilities and receiving gut feelings.
Identifying which type of empath you are is essential for HSPs. It gives you a way to discern what kind of stimuli will affect you most. It also helps you to recognize your strengths. For instance, knowing you’re an emotional empath can guide you to help people who are compatible with your sensitivities while avoiding others who can be emotionally draining.
The Highly Sensitive Person
Understanding your journey as an HSP should allow you to understand your past and future in light of it. In The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron, she draws on her many years of study to provide strategies and tips for changes needed to live a fuller life as an HSP. This is an excellent resource because it’s backed by scientific research and also offers a fresh discussion on antidepressants.
The book is for any HSP that wants to create a sense of self-worth and empowerment. It provides readers with a better understanding of their condition, or even the HSP experiences of their loved ones.
High sensitivity should not be considered a disorder but a trait, which Aron validates and explains thoroughly in the book — a definite must-read for any HSP or HSP advocate.
The Highly Sensitive Man: Finding Strength in Sensitivity
This particular book by cognitive-behavioral psychotherapist Tom Falkenstein provides the first psychological guide specifically for highly sensitive men and their loved ones.
He drew much of his work’s inspiration from Elaine Aron’s book and made groundbreaking findings on his own, including the latest research on high sensitivity. He talks about what it is and isn’t, how it relates to male identity, and provides advice and practical tools.
Male HSPs who are intent on taking action to improve their lives despite their high sensitivity should read this book. There are dozens of exercises and assessments that will help measure sensitivity levels, provide coping strategies, and techniques to tackle situations that are often difficult for people with high sensitivity.
People can also draw inspiration from the men interviewed in this book who have learned to live well with high sensitivity in their lives.
Understanding the Highly Sensitive Child: Seeing an Overwhelming World Through Their Eyes
This book by James Williams seeks to help adults understand the world from a highly sensitive child’s perspective. It aims to help HSP children grow and thrive despite their difficulties. Understanding the Highly Sensitive Child also provides readers with clear and concise guides which makes information easily digestible.
Children can display symptoms of high sensitivity early on, and they should understand how they can best cope. It is highly encouraged that parents read this book, which takes the complexities of HSP and aids them in guiding their children through what may be difficult times. This way, they can minimize the confusion that children face when trying to understand why they are different from their peers.
People with HSP of all backgrounds should have access to these powerful resources, including children. Books such as Sunshine and the Power of Words by Tamara S. Graham illustrate this trait in a beautiful way for younger people, something which we strive to do here at High Sensitives.