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Digital Subscriptions > Psychologies > No. 147 > Sensitivity is my superpower

Sensitivity is my superpower

Alice Purkiss has been criticised for being ‘too sensitive’ all her life. But research suggests that one in five of us has this inherent trait, and it comes with many benefits

self

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been told that I’m emotionally oversensitive. One of my first school reports informed my parents that I was ‘hard-working, diligent and cheerful’ but that I had the tendency to be ‘too sensitive’. In my teens, my friends told me I needed to toughen up. At university, I was advised not to take criticism so personally. Now, I refuse to watch Pride Of Britain Awards for fear of flooding the country with tears.

It’s certainly true that I feel things intensely. Often those feelings are on ‘extra loud’ and impossible to ignore: I get overwhelmed by bad news, spend days ruminating on inconsequential feedback, and am all too aware if friends or loved ones are sad, angry, exhausted, fraught or frustrated. I mirror their feelings, often absorbing them myself.

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About Psychologies

This month, we’re urging you to ‘trust yourself’. Wonderful words but, not especially easy to put into practice. That’s why we’ve dedicated 18 pages in our dossier to discovering how to do exactly that – exploring everything from to how to turn up the volume of our inner wise woman, to looking at the latest research on making the best decisions. And it’s not what you think. Be inspired and get ready to move forward. Plus, how to reinvent your career and 10 of the best budget boltholes.
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