How to stop being so sensitive?

by Harley Therapy
Reviewed by Dr Sheri Jacobson

People dealing with emotional issues can often find themselves feeling oversensitive. Loud noises, harsh light, crowds or even touch can all cause irritation. Sometimes it’s not only the outside world that is so overpowering. Those struggling with oversensitivity can be trapped in a cycle of their own thoughts, making everyday activities exhausting to complete.

If you are constantly questioning 'how to stop being so sensitive' try the below:

Concentrate on your breathing.

Find somewhere peaceful and quiet where you will be able to relax. Try to find balance by doing something rhythmic, for example, run the forefinger of one hand up and down the fingers of your other hand.

Identify the situations, thoughts, and people that may cause your oversensitivity and try to distance yourself from them.

Acknowledge that these feelings do not represent who you are.

Plan your day

For somebody living with oversensitivity, it might be difficult to find the right amount of stimulation. Having too much time on your hands can make you feel anxious. A never-ending ‘To do’ list, on the other hand, might initiate the unwanted feeling of being overwhelmed. Try to plan your tasks ahead so that you can have a productive day without feeling stressed out.

Know that you have a choice

When making a decision remember there are always multiple few options you can choose from. You don’t have to limit yourself to just one possibility, but also don’t overthink the vast number of choices. Try picking three that resonate most deeply before deciding which one is the best for you at the given moment. This way you avoid the feeling of being overwhelmed, gaining control of your actions.

Listen to your body

Whilst your oversensitivity might be related to your mental health, don’t forget about your physical health. Our bodies send us signals which can often help us understand our emotions. If you experience any negative symptoms such as stomach cramping or excessive sweating this may be your body telling you something is wrong. Pay attention to those signs as they will help you avoid any situations, people or thoughts that are not right for you.

Live in the now

Sensitive people may be prone to being overpowered by their thoughts. Try to avoid dwelling on the past, or indeed, worrying about the future. Instead, focus on the present, trying to live in the moment. Try to notice the beauty and joy that surrounds us and let that help you to re-balance.

Understand your emotions

The next time you feel overwhelmed, attempt to capture what exactly it is you are feeling. Is it sadness? anger? fear? This way you’ll have a better understanding of what triggers you in order to find an effective coping mechanism. If you notice certain stimuli cause certain emotions, then you can gradually limit them.

Don’t be afraid to explore

There is no right way to cope with oversensitivity. Be open to different possibilities. Perhaps journaling will be your outlet for any negative emotions, or meditation will offer balance.

Find a therapist to understand your feelings of over-sensitivity.

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