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  1. #41
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008


    Haven't read any replies, Im really lazy (im sick its my excuse) so sorry if this is all repeat stuff.

    So, this is a really interesting question because not only is it something everyone can relate to, but there are SO many ways it can go.

    Is sensitivity a strength? a weakness? If you're crying every time you watch the news you might just change your news sources. Or.. you can see it as a weakness and an inability to function in something that should go smoothly. People that say things at work in a business like manner--neither particularly polite or rude.. are they being rude by default for not being polite because really how hard is it to just say please and thank you? Or are they okay doing that and you're the only one always upset about a culture that works fine sans you being there?

    I think the strength/weakness bit completely depends on how it affects YOU. Are you constantly losing friends? Are people afraid to tell you the truth because of how you'll react? Do you notice yourself always very upset and distraught and it stresses you out vs being able to take a few punches in the daily grind? Because the reality is there are tons of sensitive people out there... you could change your sphere, your location, be around people just as sensitive.

    But the truth is, what I found is most 'sensitive' people that go look for others like them find out that they're somewhere on the sensitivity spectrum. That someone is always more sensitive than they are, and they find themselves in the very position of the people they were getting butthurt about before. Something innocent is said out of culture/circumstance and the other person is offended.

    I think that sensitivity to the RIGHT things is absolutely a strength. Right things being things that do not cause negativity in your life. Being sensitive to the plight of others is definitely a strength, for example. Not being able to be a park because when a child skins his knees and cries it makes you cry too? Probably not such a strength. Being sensitive to the stranger yelling in line because he's got anger issues? Sure, that's fine, get a bit offended by his attitude. Crying in the middle of your work place because of it even though you don't even want to? Probably not a strength at that point. If you feel beat up by the end of the day, then I'd say that it's important to ask how to stop being so sensitive.

    Systematic exposure is best. Just like phobias, where people are irrationally afraid of spiders, being exposed to spiders over time helps. It's conscious, active effort. Will they ever be like "Oh yeah, spiders, I got this"? Probably not. But they won't scream, have a melt down, and try to set their own house on fire just because a daddy long leg happened to be in the corner of the garage. I think if you took the time to talk to others--both more sensitive than you, and tougher than you, and actively worked towards finding ways that help you turn a situation positive, you'll be on the right track.

    I think I was a bit more sensitive as a teenager than I am now. I was a pretty sweet girl. The military definitely exposed me to both tough people and more sensitive people. And the reality was, I gravitated towards the more tough skinned people. I mimicked them, and asked them questions, and tried to wrap my head around it. It worked for me.

    Even now, thinking I'm tough skinned and all of that, I realize I get butthurt very easily when it comes to someone I love saying the same things to me that wouldn't phase me from my friends. It's always a work in progress, but I like the challenge.

    If your only motivation is because people are whining and complaining that you are who you are though, I'd say forget it. Peer pressure won't work that way unfortunately. We'd have a lot less rudeness if people could make others change. So if it's just others being all frowny faced, it's easier to give those guys the boot. If it's your family, I'd say move away and visit on the holidays. Otherwise, it'll build up resentment and make you feel like a failure and you'll start bottling up emotions.

    For me, the best way to start was just to say nothing and smother people with kindness for a while. Didn't matter what they said to me, I had a formulaic answer and reply for almost anything. It helped me keep my distance as much as possible. I sort of got thrown into the sharks, but I learned to swim pretty quickly. I'd suggest something much slower. Maybe go to a place with some neutrality. For me, physical pain was much easier to figure out than emotional pain. Working out, lifting weights, shooting a gun, kickboxing, wrestling.. those things hurt. And I was okay with that. It was positive, and a good influence, and the crowds it attracts tend to be tougher people. I found myself among others in a way that bound us together for one reason or another. I didn't have to be tough.. I just had to focus on my lessons. The jokes and punches came as they would. I could figure out how to deal with them side-by-side. When my drill sergeant said something extremely sexist and it pissed me off, I could run.. and my legs burned, and my chest burned, and it felt like I was fire because inside that's how I felt. I went from being the 3rd slowest runner in the company to being in a decent regular running group. And I hate running.

    My turn around point was when I saw a girl that was suicidal. She had attempted suicide.. and I was one of the girls charged with caring for her. Every day. All day. I watched her shower. Took her shoelaces on and off every night. She slept, and I didn't, and I'd only get 3-4 hours of sleep with a 17 hour work day of constant yelling in my face. I lost personal time. Time to write to my family, boyfriend, etc. No phone time when you're on duty. I was the last person to eat--I had to watch her eat, inspect her food and pockets before and after each meal, then go get my food and shove things in my mouth like a savage squirrel and chew on the way out the door. AND SHE COMPLAINED. CONSTANTLY. I listened to her talk to me like we were friends. Like I cared. I wanted to care--why wouldn't I hear someone out who was trying to take their own life? But... I became so numb to this sensitive little (I'll c-ensor myself here.. I rarely use the word, but that's what I called her in my head) that I just lost it. All my fucks were gone when they had my favorite item on the menu for a change (pudding with whipped cream) and I could actually eat it that day and I missed out on it because, hey, time to go. And I was so upset about this stupid pudding. She didn't care not one bit about it. Any of it. She slept like her mother was cradling her. And my drill sergeant walked over to her sleeping, and me awake, and she said, "Does it piss you off that she's just sleeping like a baby?" and I just said, "Yes, Drill Sgt." without even thinking. And she kicked that girl's bed and woke her up and just smiled and said, "Hey, Private, just makin' sure you're still alive." and walked off. This girl had attempted suicide not but 3 weeks ago, and it was just a joke to this lady. Because she sees stupid suicides every cycle. Someone always is stupid enough to join while knowing they're too sensitive to handle it. She lost all her fucks for people trying to take their own lives. And I thought.. God damnit, I wanna be like that. I'm tired of caring about this girl not dying. It's too much. Also.. I don't want anyone to have to be exhausted just dealing with me. I don't want to be exhausted dealing with others. That really cemented it in that maybe I wasn't the nice girl I thought I was and that people wanted me to be.. and that maybe I was just a little sensitive and butthurt over stuff easily, and I masked it with niceness and avoiding tough situations.

    I've always been one of the guys. That part came easily to me; I was also rarely involved in joking around, or making fun of people, or shit talking. None of it was for me. Now-a-days, looking back, I'm not nearly as sensitive as other women. Clear as day I was a lot tougher than I felt at the time. But I grew tougher skin, and I did it with exposure. So.. that's what I recommend. Systematic exposure. Something you cannot just run away from, curl into a ball, and quit.
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  2. #42
    Listening Oaky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    5w6 sp/so
    SLI None


    Emotions... little emotions... big emotions... fun emotions... not so fun emotions...

    Look at all the little ways we can understand emotions. Emotions are good because they tell us something about our values. They tell us... how much we care about ourselves... others... the world... the things we have... like fear? I have a fear of death? Someone I care about that dies? I fear... uh.. being stupid? I fear not getting that thing I want? ...or something. We can complicate it as much as we want.

    Logic is needed to derive methods to our values... and give us a snippets of enjoyable emotion. Cold hard logic? you can't savour it... well.. you can but that's because our little cluster of values includes savouring it... such emotion towards logic.
    "I don't like emotion... I like logic..." Let me offend logic a little and rile up some of that little... emotion in you. Would that not be just a tad bit ironic?

    How to not get offended? Change your perception to people who offend you and change yourself based on those... uh... criticisms? Talk to them about what offended you? Imagine those who deal with the worst offence in most things and be glad you're not them? Go mountain climbing? Avoid humans for a months? Look for an Fe hippie circle? I dunno... depends on the situation. Offence of rejection. Offence of criticism. Offence of avoidance. Offence of insult. So many ways to be offended... and each are often dealt with differently.

    hmmm... let's see now... offended.. offence.. someone punched me in the face... physical offence... different kind of offended. Going of the rails a bit.... .. .... .. ... . . . .

  3. #43
    yap yap yap xenaprincess's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    6w5 sp/sx


    I agree with Kyuuei's post, above. Exposure works the best.

    You can try to 'get' yourself out of it, but to me, that seems like being in a hole below ground and trying to dig yourself up out of the hole. It's just not possible. In that case, I'd recommend distracting yourself from focusing on whatever it is. Go to the gym and pretend whoever it is that offended you is the punching bag or treadmill or barbell.

    I used to take so much to heart. One thing that's helped has been exposure. My job has exposed me at times to verbally abusive clients who don't think twice about sending hurtful emails or speaking to me in a confrontational tone. One project involved a woman who might have drinking problems. The first time she was rude to me, I couldn't sleep for the whole weekend. I was filled with self-reproach and guilt.

    The project involved many such situations. With each time, I'd have less problems sleeping, ha. The project is over now, thank god. Last week, she sent a group email again harping on a mistake I had made months ago. This time, it didn't phase me one bit.

    Take it easy on yourself. Nurse your wounds, but don't encourage your sensitivity. Try to distract yourself. At some point, you'll face more and more situations where your emotions will be challenged. Hopefully, it will get better.

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    1w2 sp/so
    EIE Fe


    It's extremely difficult to control how one emotionally responds to a situation (read: how they feel that emotion) since it is automatic. It takes a lot of practice and time to regulate it, and after repeadly going through rationale to "reason" why a feeling is felt, it becomes possible to halt feeling emotions not as strongly, or all together through repetition and experience. That said, this is usually very unappealing to an INFP an I am speaking from an Fe prospective.

    Regardless of that, what you do have control over is how you respond to these automatic feelings, and in this particular case, offense. What you should do is first think to yourself "I am offended, why?" Take advantage of your ability to understand the why's behind your feelings. Is it justified, did the other person mean something by it? Consider what lead up to this and determine if the onus is on you, or the other person. Further, the weight of it. It is possible that offenses are not intended, but the statement or situation is egregious enough that intent is not a determining factor over whether or not offense is meant. If it seems to you that it it would be deterimental to express or show that feeling offense, then keep it in. Or, maybe bring it up the future and talk through it.

    The biggest way to work through offense is to determine what offense is reasonable. Sometimes it's determined in a universal manner, sometimes it's case-by-case. Either way, approaching it calmly with as fair of a mind possible, and when appropriate talking through it can not only get people on the same page with it, through experience learn how to manage it better and have a good implicit understand over what offense is reasonable.

  5. #45
    Tragically Unhip Pandemeria's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    4w5 so/sp


    I had the same problem in the past. I've learned to approach things less seriously and with a sense of humour; it's a lot easier to not be offended that way.

  6. #46
    Moon-Truther Ghost's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    5w4 sp


    Quote Originally Posted by misfortuneteller View Post
    I'm really struggling here. I'm in my early 20's, and i'm well aware of my other functions but I can't help but get butthurt really easily unless i was asking for a reaction then i just laugh it off.
    It can help to take time before reacting. Just holding off and allowing the dust to settle can help you see things a little more clearly. It gives you time to assess and decide if pursuing that line of thought is actually worthwhile. Stepping back also helps. When I'm offended, sometimes I'll try to take a broader view. When you look at the bigger picture, some of those "offenses" begin to look petty and unimportant. Along those lines, rethinking your priorities might be a good way to approach this. Ask yourself if you really want to spend time being offended or if you can redirect your energy into something better. After a while, you might be able to pause and take stock of the situation. What do you want out of this? Will being offended help you get what you want? Does the way you're acting fit with the person you want to be? Realizing how your attitude affects yourself and others can show you which areas need adjustment.

    You could try to incorporate the other person's perspective. It's harder to get caught up in one view of things if you're mindful of where the other person is coming from. Assuming the other person meant well can help if you're perceiving slights. Taking yourself and/or the other person less seriously is good, too. Humor is good for easing tension. Also, ask yourself how much you know about the topic at hand. Perhaps feeling offended is a knee-jerk reaction, and you've been presented with an opportunity to reevaluate. Let yourself be open to possibilities when you're uncertain.

    Arrogantly dismissing comments and assuming the offender is an idiot kind of works, but I find myself holding on to more negativity when I do that. So I don't recommend it. Heh.

    And maybe being offended isn't the problem. You can be offended and fully feel it without giving it voice and spend your energy on getting over it. So instead of worrying about not being offended, another approach might be to work on your recovery time. Basically, be offended without stewing in it or lashing out.

    You might also want to figure out how you get offended and what sorts of things offend you. Let's say you're offended by...harem pants. Okay. Knowing that, whenever people bring up pants/trousers or fashion, you might keep in mind that the conversation could turn to harem pants at any moment. The point isn't to be paranoid and see harem pants everywhere. The point is to inoculate yourself against the thing that offends you—in certain contexts. I guess it's like desensitizing yourself to it, temporarily. It's a way of either mentally bracing yourself or defusing a negative reaction off before it starts. This way, you can absorb the information dispassionately and better understand what led to you getting offended. Being offended means something, after all, and figuring out what's at the root of your reaction could help you deepen your understanding which in turn helps you grow and all that other hippie stuff.

    If one person or group of people keep bringing up something that offends you, you can also set boundaries. Tell them you refuse to talk with them about that subject or let them know why it's a sore spot and ask them to refrain. My obstinacy and endurance give me an edge in those situations. People will give up long before I do. It's okay to make certain subjects off limits with some people. As long as those subjects aren't a necessary part of the relationship (i.e. money matters with a significant other or something like that), then you can set those boundaries.

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